This is my first post, so I just wanted to start by wishing you all the very best with whatever stage of this really crappy journey you are on…reading your posts has given me so much encouragement and inspiration already.
I know I’m fortunate not to be posting for myself, but I am desperate to help my BFF who was diagnosed Stage 2 (borderline thankfully, with very slight upward spread away from cervix) in mid-January. Week after next, she start 5 weeks of Mon-Fri radiotherapy, concurrent chemo (Cisplatin) once a week; rounded off with 3 doses of brachytherapy during an overnight hospital stay.
My problem is, despite me being a ‘details’ person (did you guess? ) - my friend is the total opposite! Although she has plenty fight and positivity - after the awful wait for staging, during which she convinced herself (and almost me) that she was ‘done for’ - she has no desire to read ANY literature (including the excellent Macmillan leaflets) or hear about/prepare for the possible side-effects.
She has a young family and is a brilliantly energetic, healthy-living, never-takes-paracetamol-for-a-headache kinda girl, which I hope will stand her in good stead for what lies ahead, but I know everyone reacts differently to treatment, so I’m terrified she may find herself totally under-prepared.
Anyway, the upshot is…I want to put together some kind of treatment ‘survival’ kit…the kind of thing that if she wakes up in the middle of the night and is too cold, too hot, can’t poo, can’t stop pooing, can’t swallow cos her mouth’s sore, feels sick, feels hungry, feels bored, pretty much anything - then there might be something in there to help, instead of having to suffer until someone can get to the shops in the morning!
So any ideas that you ladies have would be so, so appreciated…especially those who have been through a similar regime. I’ve told her to be absolutely open to anything that the nurses offer to combat side-effects but, knowing how much she hates to be medicated, are over-the-counter remedies generally OK to take eg. Imodium, Senokot, Corsodyl? For lounging, did you prefer PJs or trackies? Was feeling cold an issue? What sort of foods did you live off (or couldn’t stand!)?
Phew, that’s probably the longest thing I’ve written for years, so I’ll go now…any ideas - no matter how small - would really be great!
Much love and strength to you all xxx