Spoonfulness

Wow it’s been a while. So hello again!

I haven’t been writing for the past few weeks or so as I’ve just been incredibly tired. I’m still short of magnesium. Stupid, stupid magnesium. Ever since January when chemo ended I’ve been having a weekly IV drip of the stuff. Hours of being hooked up to a machine on the chemo ward. There’s been no escaping that place!

I’ve gone from having almost non-existent levels of magnesium to having half what is considered normal. Thats where it’s stopped. For ages my levels have refused to budge. Here’s the irony….having chemo depleted my stores of magnesium so I need more but because of the chemo my kidneys can’t retain it.

It’s so very frustrating. Plus on top of the exhaustion, it also causes muscle weakness and cramps.

With limited energy I have to be quite selective about what I do and how I spend my spoons. I’ve mentioned the spoons before. When you have such fatigue it helps to think of what energy you do have as something tangible like spoons. You only get so many spoons a day. Sometimes none at all. There has been a severe spoon shortage just lately and so I’ve been using them sparingly.

I have used some spoons on exciting things. Hopefully soon I will blog about what done from my List for Living but have been too tired to write about!

No 21 on the List for Living

21) Hold an exhibition of my cow photographs

For as long as I can remember I’ve loved taking photographs of cattle. Growing up on a farm in Gloucestershire meant they were always in the fields around us. With a gentle and curious nature, I think they are wonderful animals.

I’d always fancied having an exhibition of my pictures but never thought much more about it until I came up with my List for Living. My friend Gill, who runs the Garden Tea Rooms in Worcestershire offered to display my work. Over coffee, cake and chemo, we planned the exhibition – ‘Have I got MOOs for you’.

Many of the images that I selected were taken while I was going through cancer treatment. There are not only cows in my collection but also plenty of steers. In other words both girls and boys.

Taking pictures of these big, beautiful beasts has helped to get my through the difficult times. Over the past couple of years my parents have looked after me as I recovered from major surgery and relentless chemo. Being in the countryside was a tonic in itself, plus taking photos of the cattle over the garden fence took my mind off things.

Now once again I’m trying to recuperate from chemo. I’m still ridiculously exhausted but putting this together has given me something lovely to focus on while not moving far from the sofa.

The exhibition opened this weekend. It was good to feel nervous about something which didn’t involve blood tests or scans. We arrived early in the morning to get it ready. There were 15 pictures to put on display. This is my favourite, it features a pair of cheeky brothers.

I should say that it was my friend Rache who worked out how to put up the hooks on the walls. That nervous excitement meant I wasn’t much use. She also took these photographs of my photographs. Really all I did was stand back and decide where to put them!

It was a great feeling, such a sense of satisfaction, to finally see my pictures on the walls in their own exhibition. With the cattle grazing around us, there was only one thing left to do and that was to celebrate with a cream tea.

‘Have I got MOOS for you’ runs until the end of the month at the Garden Tea Rooms which is next to Witley Court in Great Witley, Worcestershire.

http://www.witleytearooms.co.uk

Special thanks to Gill Edmonds – Making People Happy With Cake!