Ringing the bell…

I was all set for chemo number 15. My favourite chair was free and I settled into it. The port angel arrived at my side and I knew she’d get the blood flowing. “Wave your magic wand please,” I joked and she slid the needle into the opening. In a flash, blood flowed into the tube. And then it stopped. My body was not going to play ball. Last week was a fluke. Another attempt proferred the same result. Nope. “Perhaps I haven’t drunk enough water this time?” Lying down was an option. That would work. Nada.

It was as if my body had decided enough was enough. It had offered up too much blood and just wasn’t going to obey any longer. “We’ll have to go into a vein,” my angel whispered. Two more attempts proved fruitless. “It’s not your fault. It’s me,” I confessed. But she wasn’t buying it. Finally, another special needle did the trick and I watched the red liquid fill up the vial. “Thank you!” I couldn’t bring her smile back. Not just yet.

Now to wait for the results. Coffee, a delicious sandwich and a chat with my neighbour filled in the gap and soon, the news came. My blood results were good. All systems go. As the saline drip began, one of my nephews and a sister-in-law arrived to cheer me up. I flipped my lazyboy into recline and was about to lean back, when Dr Gudgeon appeared. “No chemo today. You’re done!” That was it. A quick meeting in her office confirmed the team’s decision. No more chemo. An appointment with the surgeon was made for the following week. My operation would be followed by radiation. The journey had moved into phase two. ( I think I mentioned divine timing in the last blog, didn’t I? )

I’d just pop into the chemo room to say my goodbyes. The nurses had other ideas. My port angel made a moving speech about my journey and then invited me to step up. After a few words to my fellow travellers,  I rang the chemo bell three times. I’d been wanting to do that forever and suddenly the moment had arrived. My eyes pricked a little as I hugged nurses and waved my way out. Who would have thought…

Archie was lying at the front door when the car pulled up. He gave me a thousand words for deserting him and then disappeared before I could pick him up. I felt a bit lost. For a moment, my balloon deflated. But no. This wasn’t the time to get all melancholic. I reached for a bottle of sulphur free bubbly and popped it into the fridge. A family supper should include a glass, surely? No, it wasn’t the end of my journey, but yes it was the end of this long phase. A celebration was necessary!

My three drops of CBD oil had me drifting off to a peaceful sleep that night. In the middle of a complicated dream, I was awoken by a gentle head butt. Archie was re-assuring me of his love. His powerful purring lasted a few minutes, before he jumped through the window. Places to go and creatures to hunt. I think he was reminding me that he still had a role to play in my healing. Recovery depended on so many things. Cat therapy was definitely up there with the best…

2 Replies to “Ringing the bell…”

  1. Elspeth says:

    Such wonderful new darling Gail xx

    Liked by 1 person

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