Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A Little Bit of This & A Little Bit of That

A big 'Thank You' for your response to my previous post. Definitely a case of 'a problem shared is a problem halved.' I remember being told as a Social Science student that my talking was my thinking. I suppose that I have simply replaced the 'talking' with 'blogging.' What a difference a week makes!

Last week I had an appointment at the John Hunter Hospital Physical Therapies department. I was under the impression that it was for assessment by the Occupational Therapist. I was not quite right! In actual fact I saw Jeanette, and whether she was a physio or OT is irrelevant. Together, we went through some testing to see exactly where I stood with my right hand. On a scale of 0 - 5 [5 being the best] I was 5 in some areas. Unfortunately, when I was bad I was very, very bad. There is absolutely NO strength in the grip of my right hand. My index finger is almost straight, with absolutely no bend. My little finger bends spontaneously and is almost impossible to straighten. The idea is to use exercise in the hope that I may eventually regain some use as the nerves regenerate. Apparently this happens at approximately 1millimetre per day [I think that is the figure] What I do know is that there are lots of millimetres in the length of my arm.

Jeanette shared with me that her first thoughts, on reading the referral from the doctor were that, 'this is not good.' When I walked in that changed to, 'this is not to bad.'  Saying goodbye, she was convinced that there was 'HOPE.' I will hold onto that! How I would love to 'once again' be able to touch type and even to write again, using my right hand. I do not make a good left hander.

Had an enjoyable lunch on Saturday with Group 33, which is the Breast Cancer Support Group that I have the honour and privilege to share my journey with. Not sure when I bought my digital camera but I have faithfully taken photos at each of our monthly luncheons. Unfortunately, the girls had never been given copies of the prints. On Saturday the situation was rectified when I handed out dozens of prints to the 12 in attendance. Problem was that I left in a hurry as Haydn was waiting and I did not get to take photographs on the day. I believe it will be the first luncheon that no pics were taken. Such a shame as we had lots of laughs as we noted the changes with individuals always at a different stage with hairstyles. No doubt, chemo and radiotherapy show up in the hair.

I had also purchased cute, pink, knitted bears with the breast cancer ribbon attached. These I handed out, and it was decided we would use them as Christmas tree decorations. There was only one problem! I did not have one for myself, so cannot even show you how cute they are. Hoping to be able to order another one for me.

The other thing that is of interest to me at the moment is the possible use of using hyperbaric chamber therapy. The problem being that I have absolutely no idea where this thought came from. Or indeed, how I go about getting my doctor to warm to the idea. As with all things cancer, I like to have the blessing of the doctors on my 'team.' I suspect I have heard somewhere of the benefits of using it in some way as a cancer therapy and also for radiation burns along with lymphoedema. Now, doesn't that sound interesting?

Have just put the last log on the fire for the night, and finished a ginger tea. Guess it is time to say 'goodnight' one and all.

Love and gratitude


Kaz said...

Hey Chez.
So good to know your last blog that was so helpful to you,Yes.

Chez so hope with exercise you will regain some or at least most of your hand and arm back.Was good to hear what Jeannette said,there is always hope my friend hope it comes quicker then she thinks.

What Chez you never brought a pink bear for you,what??xo

Good to hear you had alot of laughs and share your stories.Not sure what is the hyperbaric chamber therapy is,thinking you told me the other day and my brain is not bringing it to me,sorry.

Gentle Hugs
Love ya Kaz..xoxo

Unknown said...

Great to read that therapy may bring some use of your hand back to you Cheryl! I could feel the hope and excitement in your blog! Yayyy! We will certainly hold on to the HOPE with FAITH! Glad to read you had a pleasant luncheon with the Breast Cancer Group, I know you were a breath of fresh air to them with your sharing of pictures and the gift of the knitted bears. What a fantastic gift to them from you! Sure it will be a keepsake for them too! I know they enjoy your company and they all seem to be a group of lovely ladies from your pictures. Oh Cheryl keep up the good work you are doing with optimism as you have and we are sure pulling for you from miles away to see some good response for you with the hand!! Have a most wonderful blessed week and thanks for letting us in your thoughts again. :-) BIG {{{HUGS}}}XO

Diane Rodgers said...

Cheryl....You never cease to AMAZE me!!!! God love you and keep you forever and ever!!!! Keep on keeping on my friend! xox

Debby said...

Hope is a good thing to have in your arsenal. As is time to visit with friends. I'm glad that, on this day at least, you had a heaping helping of both!

diane b said...

It is good to hear you sounding more cheery. Hope you can improve the movement in your hand. Keep up the good work.

Cheryl said...

Thank you for your Comments!
I think it will work, I hope only in the short time, to do a generic 'thank you' for your input. Why is it that I always feel so much better after reading what you have to say.
In the meantime, I am working on new notebook which will handle voice activated software somewhere in the future.
I class each of you as friends and therefore struggle to limit the number of words I type when replying so I will give this ago today. Who knows what may happen next?
Love and gratitude. Thanks for caring xo

Sara Diana said...

I have had problems with my hands, I have oedema caused by either herceptin or tamoxifen which makes them stiff some times and I have joint pain and loss of grip. They have stopped putting IV's in my hands and that has helped some but I keep exercising in the hope that they will eventually go back to normal, I sincerely hope the same happens for you.

One thing struck me whilst reading your post and that was how self less and caring you are. xxxx