Christmas cheer

I blame Christmas. Thats why there hasn’t been a blog from me for ages. The chemo is still really tiring but when I’m feeling well, the best thing in the world is just enjoying doing ordinary stuff. I’ve even made my own Christmas pudding vodka!

Xmas vodka!

Okay, it’s not just Christmas thats got in the way. I also had an emergency stay in hospital. A little while ago I suddenly became very ill in the middle of the night. It wasn’t long after a session of chemo. I had hours of severe pain and then I started vomiting. Sorry this is another blog post about being sick!

I couldn’t even get out of bed. Instead I was using the plastic bin in my bedroom. I’d actually bought it thinking that one day it may have an alternative use.

As I’ve had so much of this, I knew it was different this time. This was something much worse that the normal awful. Speaking to one of my consultants on the phone it was clear I would have to go into A and E. The moment when being ill turns into an unexpected hospital visit is scary. You get used to coping with being poorly but when you need proper medical help, it turns the situation into something much more stressful.

30 hours later and I was still vomiting. By this point the only thing coming out was bile. I was too ill to sit up in my uncomfortable hospital bed. Moving made things worse. Instead I was lying on my side, resting my head on a cardboard sick bowl, in place of a pillow. When I needed to throw up I just had to turn my face into the bowl. This is genius, I thought to myself, as I filled another bowl.

Genius??? It was only a few days afterwards when I’d stopped vomiting that I realised just how bad I must have been to think something like that. Drips and drugs helped me to improve. My parents brought in some of my post so I managed to make my stack of sick bowls look a little bit festive.

Christmas cheer

Almost a week later and I was out of hospital. No one was quite sure what exactly made me so ill but it wasn’t anything serious thankfully. As a veteran of getting bad news, I can’t tell you just how relived I was.

The problem was probably something to do with my stomach lining becoming inflamed. Apparently the correct medical term for my horrific sickness is that it was….”just one of those things.” Excellent.

Since getting out of hospital, I’ve had another dose of chemo and I’m fine. I managed to make the Christmas pudding vodka above. It wasn’t that which put me in hospital!

I have all the usual nonsense that goes with chemo of course. But that’s alright. That’s more than alright. I’m alive and feeling (relatively) well. I’m so looking forward to celebrating another Christmas with the people I love.

30 thoughts on “Christmas cheer

  1. Christmas pudding vodka – I’m clearly missing a trick here! Have a wonderful Christmas and enjoy the party! I will be watching for your next missive in 2015 x

  2. I am so relieved you’re feeling better. I think about you often and wondered how you were doing. As a retired nurse, I can only say, “I wish I could take the pain and discomforts away”. I’m send you a big hug and hope you find comfort with family and friends during the holidays.

  3. Merry Xmas from the far Italy to the strongest Woman I’ve ever read about.
    You are The Fighter. Lot of Respect for you.
    Keep on fighting we are with you bearing this huge rock with you.


    Motoclub UISP Bats of the Road

  4. Have a wonderful festive season and all the best for the new year.
    (Do you think it’s possible to make Christmas pudding whisky?)

  5. Happy Christmas Helen, like you I get to see another Christmas which is all good. x

  6. Hope you have an amazing Christmas with your family Helen. And there was I feeling stressed because I couldn’t find a parking place……….your blog puts it all into perspective x

  7. I hope you now have a relatively good period especially for Christmas with your loved ones. Keep up that fighting spirit. With love and prayers.

  8. So good to hear from you – I have been thinking of you. I am just worried that I can’t see the vodka in your photo – am I losing my faculties or does one drink all the vodka while stirring the pudding? If so it is a remarkably focused photo.

  9. Blessing of healing and the season to you from across the pond in the States.

  10. I am always inspired to read your articles Helen. I feel by your efforts one can gain insight into how the mind works when confronted with a world of hurt,pain and survival like your own. We can all search into rhe recesses of our brain to attempt imagining how we would be. People like yourself who share such a personal journey really do enrich our lives. My thoughts like many other peoples are with you. I look forward to your vontinuing bloggs

  11. You are an amazing lady. Have a wonderful Christmas. X x

    Sent from my iPhone


  12. Christmas pudding vodka!?! Genius! So glad you’re out of hospital, Helen. All love for Christmas!

  13. Helen, although we have never met, you have been such a positive inspiration to me. Your appreciation of the littlest things remind me of how precious each little moment of life is. I live with chronic pain, nothing life-threatening, but a real quality of life bummer just the same. You urge me to take better care of myself, and to push myself harder to participate in life. Bless you and your family through this Christmas season, and during the year to come. Thank you again for your posts.
    Raleigh, NC

  14. Glad you are home and doing better. A great big hug and enjoy the holiday with all your friends and family!!! And ring in a new and better year!!!!

  15. I’ve been following your blog for a while. You’ve had some rubbish treatment and horrible side effects. Its good to hear you are feeling better – all things being relative! – and looking forward to a happy xmas. Good luck

  16. hope you have a chemo free Christmas and a great time with friends and family

  17. I hope you have the best Christmas that you possibly can, enjoy the vodka along with the thoughts that so many people will be raising a glass to you. I hope to read in 2015 that you enjoyed yourself and are still fighting
    Peace and love to you Helen Happy Christmas

  18. Helen, thinking of you from a steamy Australia. What a turbulant year you have had, your strength has been incredible. May you enjoy many treats and great company this Christmas…. Indulge if you can in whatever way possible. Till we hear from you in 2015… Anne xx

  19. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas Helen, I will be thinking of you. Stay strong lovely lady, many blessings and love to you. xx

  20. Happy Christmas from one Helen to another. It’s a beautiful day and we are still here so enjoy!

  21. i wish you a great new year helen with less treatment hopefully and more activities on your list. always in my thoughts despite not knowing you in person. xxx

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