Day 6: Mother’s Day

Today was Mother’s Day and a nice reminder of how important mine has been down the years.

Today was Mother’s Day and a nice reminder of how important mine has been down the years.

  • In 1977 I was born with a hole in my heart. That was obviously pretty stressful for her at the time (but I don’t really remember as I was a few seconds old)
  • In 1982 she took me to the local cinema to see Steven Spielberg’s E.T. and various other films throughout the 1980s (often on my birthday!)
  • In 1985 she got the family a VHS recorder, an amazing device for the time (also handy for me as I was the only one who could set the timer!)
  • In 1986 she rented out Commando on video and let me and a friend watch it! (take that BBFC!)
  • In 1988 she bought me a VHS copy of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1966)
  • In the 1980s and 1990s she did so much to help and support me navigate life, that there are too many stories to mention in a single blog post.
  • But this one from early 1995, when I worked at a local hardware store (Saturday job during my A-levels), is illustrative. A co-worker once said to me: “Oh! Is your mum that lovely Irish nurse I sometimes see in the village?”. “Yes, it was” I replied. So if you are ever in my neck of the woods, be prepared to meet a feisty but kindly Irish nurse who enjoys laughing and a nice cup of tea.

Remember, these posts are all about raising funds and awareness for Marie Curie’s Great Daffodil Campaign this year.

To find out more just visit: www.mariecurie.org.uk/get-involved/daffodil-appeal

You can donate to my campaign at: justgiving.com/ambrose-heron


Playlist/Checklist

  • House of Cards, Chapters 47-52 (Netflix)
  • Oscar Poker, Episode 125: Oscars Post-mortem (Apple Podcasts)
  • Exercise: Walk, 2.25 miles

Day 5: Recap

Given the events of yesterday, I had to rest up a little and thought it was a good time to have a recap about things.

Given the events of yesterday, I had to rest up a little and thought it was a good time to have a recap about things.

Ready? Here we go:

  • These series of 39 posts are about my experiences as a cancer patient this month.
  • Part of the reason I’m blogging about all this, is to give some insight into the world of cancer and the day-to-day experience of living with it.
  • I’m doing them in aid of Marie Curie UK, a cancer charity that really makes a difference in patient’s lives.
  • It is part of their Great Daffodil Appeal this month, where all kinds of people raise money to help people suffering with a dreadful illness.
  • The money raised during this month will pay for Marie Curie nurses, who provide invaluable support to cancer patients and their families.
  • Although I suffer from brain cancer and usually raise funds for The Brain Tumour Charity  (I’ll be back doing things for them soon), it is important to branch out and help others.

You can donate via my Just Giving page at: www.justgiving.com/Ambrose-Heron

Or click the following badge:

JustGiving - Sponsor me now!


Things Done:

Day 4: Endoscopy

The fourth day of my Marie Curie campaign saw me in my local hospital, but it wasn’t anything to do with a brain tumour.

The fourth day of my Marie Curie campaign saw me in my local hospital, but it wasn’t anything to do with a brain tumour.

I won’t go into any great detail but I went to the Endoscopy unit and had a procedure known as a Flexible Sigmoidoscopy. Let’s just say it was challenging.

Shall we move on?

JustGiving - Sponsor me now!


Picks:

Day 3: Wanderings

Walking has been a big part of my life since 2008 and it has served me well during my cancer years.

Walking has been a big part of my life since 2008 and it has served me well during my cancer years.

On average, I walk about 2 miles per day outside in the fresh air on various random routes and today I walked

Not only is it good to get out of the house and get some fresh oxygen into your lungs, but it is also an opportunity to listen to podcasts, music or chat with friends on the phone.

I also have some apps which monitor things like distance, time and calories burned, so it is also an opportunity to monitor my health.

But the real thing about walking is the sense of being ‘out there’ and not knowing exactly what you will come across: a nice dog, a strange hedge or some daffodils arranged in the shape of a heart (which I did actually see!).

Heart of daffodils 03.03.16

As Swiss writer Robert Walser once wrote:

“With the utmost love and attention the man who walks must study and observe every smallest living thing, be it a child, a dog, a fly, a butterfly, a sparrow, a worm, a flower…” – Robert Walser, The Walk (Serpent’s Tail, 2013)


JustGiving - Sponsor me now!

Picks:

Day 2: Birthday

Today is my 39th birthday and despite all the problems I’ve had over the last four years, there are still reasons to be optimistic.

March 2nd this year was my 39th birthday and although the weather was bad, the food and presents were pretty good.

Some worry about getting older, but I’m in the unusual place of trying to savour every single day, due to my health issues.

February this year was tough for various reasons, so I was glad to see the end of it.

Some regard the age of 40 as something to get depressed about, but if I can survive the next 365 days it will be a cause for celebration.

The average outlook for my type of brain cancer (a grade 3 oligodendroglioma astrocytoma) is not good.

Cancer Research UK say:

“For grade 3 oligodendroglioma 30 to 38 people in 100 (30 to 38%) will survive for 5 years or more after they are diagnosed.”

But I’m weirdly optimistic.

I’ll just keep living every single day as best I can, for as long as I can.


Picks