Archive for July, 2008


Appointment with the surgeon

Firstly, thanks for all your messages of support. I can’t begin to tell you how much I appreciate them and how much strength I have drawn from them.

I went to see the surgeon today and will have an MRI scan, mammogram and chest xray done tomorrow morning. They won’t have a full picture of what’s going on until they’ve analysed all of that, and the surgeon is going to call me tomorrow afternoon to discuss what they have found.

My surgery will most likely be on 20th August, further away than I had somehow thought.

The surgeon seemed a little more optimistic today. They ran some more tests on the samples they took on Tuesday, and found that the cells are not respondent to oestrogen (sp!!) and a couple of other hormones which he mentioned but which I forget!! I am deliberately staying away from online searches at this point so as not to drive myself insane, but that seemed to be a positive thing.

The actual tumour is about 2cm across, which I have no idea about but am hoping that is quite small…it has spread to the lymph node and I don’t think that is a very good thing but will wait and see what is said.

The biggest news is that the surgeon is hoping he can save some of my breast, which would obviously be wonderful, though on the downside I won’t get the lipo on my stomach which might alleviate the effects of childbirth, lol!!! 😀 Only kidding, obviously this would be much easier to recover from than a full mastectomy and I can easily live with a bit of a dimple!

I will still need the chemo and he did mention radiotherapy today as well but I have no idea what that really means yet.

Emotionally, I think I am surprising myself and those around me by how OK I am feeling. Yes, initially I was horrified and I am still scared about the future.

However I am absolutely buggered if I am going to sit around and wallow in self pity. This thing is NOT the boss of me!

This is my 100th blog post. I know traditionally you post 100 things about yourself, and I even have it typed up and ready to go, but somehow it isn’t seeming very important at the moment. I will post it later. 😀

Lastly, my blog is NOT going to revolve around my condition from now on. I’ll post updates, so obviously for the next week or two it will mostly be about what’s going on, but apart from that I will still probably just be posting the same old stuff about the kids driving me mad and my life in general.

Thanks for listening.


I have some bad news

I can’t believe I am having to type this.

I found a tiny, barely noticeable lump under my arm about three weeks ago, and my GP referred my to a surgeon to get it checked out.

I have breast cancer.

I went to my appointment yesterday evening. The surgeon couldn’t even find the lump, but sent me to have an ultrasound on the area just to be sure. They found two lumps in my underarm area (the second one is too deep for me to have felt it). They put a needle in both of the lumps and drew cells out, and when they dyed it and looked at it under a microscope, they were able to confirm it.

I have another appointment with the surgeon on Thursday afternoon. I will have an MRI, and they will tell me what the course of action is.

I will definitely be losing my right breast and will have to have three courses of chemo. They tell me they can reconstruct my breast- in fact I have to look at pictures on Thursday (!!) and I will be losing all of my hair.

One of the lumps is the lymph node under my arm.

I’m shit scared, vomit-enducing terrifed at the moment. I am alternating between complete shock, terror and tears.

I don’t know what the future will bring. Please pray for me that we’ve caught this early. They couldn’t give me a prognosis at this stage.


The most high maintenance cat in the Universe

This is the culprit. His name is Max, he’s 8 years old and possibly the most spoiled, lazy, overfed and high needs cat in the entire world.


Max likes to make his needs known to all the family, in fact, to anyone who is willing to listen. Max can cry extremely loudly and with a persistance which is quite staggering.

Last night, just as I got Robbie back to sleep at 4am, Max began crying loudly from our living room. I soon realised that his problem must be a very serious one (!!!), and staggered downstairs cursing under my breath.

The issue?

Ricky had (gasp!) left a toy on the seat of Max’s favourite armchair, and his demands mainly revolved around me removing said object so that he could climb in and go to sleep. He is so petulant, he didn’t even say thank you.

Things have got to change around here!!!!

One of his main redeeming features, however, is the way he puts up with the kids, who are mind blowingly rough with him- he would never, ever retaliate. Here he is, meeting Ricky for the first time. 😀


I must be grateful for small mercies.


Garlic Tiger Prawn Recipe

I’ve literally just finished eating this, and wished I’d made twice the amount (greedy cow!!)

Serves 1-2

100g raw tiger prawns, I used shell off but you could leave the shells on if you wished
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (mine was organic and fresh from the garden)
1 spring onion/scallion, finely chopped (ditto the above)
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley (and NO, dried will NOT do- if ever there was a waste of a good thing, it is dried parsley!!)
1/2 red bird’s eye chilli (according to taste)
1 tbsp butter
1 tsp olive oil to prevent butter from catching
1 wedge lemon
salt & pepper

1. Melt butter and oil in non stick or heavy based pan
2. Add scallion, garlic and chilli- cook on low heat for 3 minutes or so and then raise temperature.
3. Add prawns and cook over high heat for 1-2 minutes. Turn prawns, then cook for a further minute until pink on all sides. Do not overcook or the result will be rubbery.
4. Add parsley and squeeze lemon over. Stir thoroughly. Remove from heat and season.

I ate this with freshly steamed potatoes and mange tout from our garden, but you could easily add a tbsp of creme fraiche and serve it over tagliatelle for a quick but delicious meal. 🙂


Home grown goodness!

This year, with us having a much bigger garden than before, we decided to make a project of growing our own vegetables in containers in our garden.

Ian’s brother Neil bought us as a family many containers, grow bags, seeds and other bits and pieces for Christmas in order to get us started. We were excited for the kids to be able to grow and eat their own produce, it’s been an excellent and fun way to teach them where their food grows.

Also with the credit crunch in action, it has been so rewarding to do this and save some money!

Plus, with veggies like these, you wonder why you didn’t do it before! They are magnificent!

This year, we grew our own potatoes (three different varieties), mange tout, beans, onions, and courgettes, and have tomatoes and chilli peppers on their way!

Next year, we have ambitious expansion plans 😀 and will definitely be doing more!

Here are some of what we grew- looks good enough to eat, huh?!! 😀



Part 2- I pity the foo’…

…who allows their three year old son, pretty much unsupervised, to play in next door’s garden with three ten year old girls who are doing makeovers on each other.




Which animal totem pole suits you best?

I don’t know if this is very accurate. Those of you who know me, what do you think? Do it yourselves too and let me know what it comes out as! 🙂

Which animal totem best suits you?
created with
You scored as DeerYou are the Deer. You tend to be very gentle with other animals of your domain and are also considered the innocent one, which is a good thing. You tend to be able to perceive more than others, which is a handy skill.


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copingwithchaosblog AT gmail DOT com