Archive for September, 2008


My first round of chemotherapy

I’m just home from having my first round of chemo. It went fine- I still feel grand for now, the side effects won’t kick in for another few hours or so, apparently.

The first three rounds are FEC and the second three rounds will be taxotere.

I thought it was going to be a drip, but because I had the picc line put in, the nurse just pushed it all through that, so it was all quite quick.

One of the drugs made me sting all over, but it was over quickly. The nurse warned me that it would feel like I was sitting on nettles, and she wasn’t wrong! πŸ˜€

So- not too bad so far. It’s done. One down, five to go. πŸ™‚

I also saw “The Wig Lady” and my government supplied wig is en route. I have gone for a long style, the shorter ones were not good with my chubby cheeks. Ian said they made me look like Kelly Osborne. Will be kicking his ass for that later!!!!

For those of you (Jenny!!) who want to know such things, the wig I’ve gone for is a Rene of Paris one called Stevie, in marble brown. I’ve already ordered myself one on the internet which is also Rene of Paris, on Jenny’s recommendation, it is called Jade, in light chocolate.

The wig looked so nice that I will definitely model it for you all once it arrives. It’s a big improvement on my naturalΒ frizzy mess! πŸ˜›

OK, off to put my feet up for a while. I actually feel fine, and might work for a couple of hours this afternoon.


Mini Me?

I was just clearing up the house a bit and found some old photos of me as a baby. I haven’t seen them for a while, and was shocked at how like me Robbie is!

They’re a bit grainy as I don’t have a scanner, but have a look and tell me what you think! πŸ™‚






Monday Music

Alice In Chains- Angry Chair

So, they say lightning never strikes twice in the same place. This is a theory that I completely and utterly refute.

Firstly, I work as Engineering Controller for a telecoms company. Phone systems HATE sudden surges of electricity. Every time (all once a year or so) that there’s a thunder storm here, I find myself rolling my eyes and waiting for the phone calls from distressed customers, inevitably saying “there was a bang, and now our phones won’t work”. We have a number of customers whose sites get hit by lightning on a regular basis. Their systems get fried once a year, unless they take additional (and very expensive) measures to control the situation. I’m pretty sure that, if you ask them, they’ll confirm that lightning does, indeed, strike twice, and often three, four or five times in the same place. πŸ™‚

This song is a little bit like that for me. It’s happened to be on my CD player twice when I’ve crashed my car.

The first time was my first ever accident, and wasn’t my fault (no, it BLOODY wasn’t, Dad, I know you’re reading… πŸ˜€ )- some numpty pulled out of a side street and then turned across my path without indicating. It was my parent’s car, a red VW Polo.

Second time…well…again, I know Dad is probably reading this, but this is one of those occasions where I think it’s OK, and enough time has passed, that I can ‘fess up.

Again with the red Polo…it was my Mum’s car. Me, my brother and Mum fought over it once we’d got our tests.

I think every accident I’ve ever had has slowed me down a bit- this incident is one of the major influences on that.

The yard we used to keep my horses at had a really narrow gateway. People were always catching the back end of their cars on it.

I was in the stage of full complacency of the newly qualified teenage driver, and used to drive that wee Polo like a chicken orientalist. I used to drive like a maniac up the driveway of that yard and through the gates as if the very hounds of hell were after me.

Well…my luck didn’t hold, and one day, predictably, I clobbered the back end of the car pretty hard off the gate posts.

This came pretty hard on the heels of my first accident (see above) and I was a little apprehensive about telling my parents, so…I kind of put it off…

The damage was on the passenger side, so my Mum didn’t notice right away.

The next evening, I was looking out of my bedroom window, and my Mum was reversing the Polo into our very narrow driveway as she came home from work.

As luck would have it, she gave that very same part of the car a good, hard whack on her way through the gateposts. I was very sympathetic! πŸ˜€

OK, not proud of this now, especially as my Mum isn’t around to confess to…I am sure she’s up there screeching down at me now…sorry Mum…. πŸ˜€

Dad- I really am sorry. Call you later- love you….

Bloody well never playing THAT album in the car again!!!!!!!




There are some of you who have stuck with me through everything, even though noone is making you read and you have never met me offline. There are also plenty of you who have stuck with me through everything, who know me offline, and you already know how much I love you! I do really appreciate it, but I do sometimes worry that I am driving you away with negativity. Blogger’s remorse or something… πŸ˜€

Anyway, I had a lovely (why do I want to say “last”) weekend, not doing anything particularly exciting, but spending some quality time with my guys, both little and big.

Tomorrow night, Ian and I are going for dinner at Balloo House, one of our favourite haunts, which will be partially funded by a very generous and much appreciated voucher from my girls at the January Jubilees. Love you, ladies!

Then- the serious business of kicking this thing in the ass will really begin.

Tuesday should be the first day of chemo. I say “should” partly because everything keeps getting changed, and partly because I have a very minor cold, something which normally wouldn’t even begin to knock me, but I am really hoping it won’t delay things. I think they can tell if you’re well enough from your white blood cell count.

I’ve had surgery. I’ve had the diagnosis. That said- the next few months are going to be as rough as a badger’s arse. It somehow won’t be real until the drip is in my arm.

In a fortnight’s time, my hair will be coming out, and I will be getting it buzzed. I’ll probably be feeling very tired and sick. I’ll be trying to cope with work, the kids and housework.

I don’t know if I know what I’m doing. Really and truly.

I DO know that I am stronger than I ever gave myself credit for. I have real moments of blackness, the likes of which I’ve never had before, but that is what they are- moments. I feel certain I can get through this. I HAVE to get through this. There is no option.

Tomorrow I am posting another Monday Music, and am determined to make it something funny- tomorrow is my last day of feeling like the real me for a while.

But- no matter how hard you kick me, cancer, I am NOT going down, Mo-fo!!!!!!!!!

Suzy will be back- with better hair, a nicer waistline, and more attitude than ever, once this is all over! πŸ˜€


Damned if they do…

I’m not a very political person, to say the least. I don’t pretend to know the first thing about it all.

However, I am looking at the situation on both sides of the pond, and find myself thinking, bloody hell, how do these people even WANT the job?!

I think it’s becoming increasingly clear that we are heading for a global recession of possibly unprecedented levels. That’s a pretty scary thought. Major banks are crashing around us. I am actually shocked by it all- not being very politically aware, it came as a bit of a surprise to me to be honest. I’m not proud of that, and should have been paying more attention.

Electricity in NI anyway has gone up by 50% in the past six months alone, fuel costs so much it makes me nearly faint, and my grocery bill is cause for heart palpatations. Ian and I are not well off- but there are SO many people who earn less than us, but who have much bigger outgoings. We have been spectacularly lucky in moving house JUST before the housing market hit the deck here, and we sold our first house for a huge profit, so our mortgage is comparatively small. If we’d left it another year or two before we bought that first house, I don’t even want to think about what financial position we’d now be in, but it would not be good in any way.

That’s the problem- people have bought houses, thinking complacently that, as everyone used to say “you’ll never lose money on a house”, and at time of buying, their repayments were affordable because overall outgoings were so much less.

Now- hmmm, not so much.

The girl who bought our first house was a first time buyer who was buying as an investment. House prices in that area have now plummeted since we sold by Β£40-50k (about $100k), and I actually think about her and feel bad that it’s turned out to be a poor short term investment. I hope in a few years time the market will recover and she’ll be OK.

The house we bought hasn’t really lost much value, not that we want to move, and at the moment it’s SELLING- not value. Can you even find a buyer? Who can blame buyers? Who really knows when the market has hit rock bottom? Scary times.

I don’t pretend to know how we have got to this point. Like I say, I should have been paying closer attention. But, I look at poor sodding Gordon Brown, who has made some major mistakes in the short time he’s been Prime Minister, but who probably couldn’t have stopped this anyway. He’s not long for this job, and looks increasingly exhausted and irritable with every passing day. Even those closest to him are scenting blood; no-one can wait to be rid of him. David Cameron, the Conservative leader, looks smug and complacent. He’ll almost certainly be looking more exhausted in two years time, when he’s PM and the country is still in recessionsville- sure, it might not actually be of his doing, but you can bet your bottom dollar that the British people will be blaming him for the financial state of the land…it goes with the turf.

I look at the US, where two interesting candidates are battling it out for the Presidency, (going to stay neutral here, ha ha!) both of whom under normal circumstances could be great…

Things are SO bad- anyone in the top job on either side of the Atlantic is going to be blamed, whether or not the problems are their fault. All of these people are inheriting problems which have resulted from the work of others. Yet, in the year or so since Gordon Brown took over from Tony Blair- it’s all his fault. It will be the same in the States- whoever wins the race now will be to blame in a few years time when the recession isn’t over.

I don’t envy anyone that level of power. I’d hate to be held accountable for the fate of a nation. I wonder if, in the back of their minds late at night, those who desparately want to hold the reins ever question their own judgement on even wanting that role in the first place!



My obsession with ebay is well documented and ongoing. As part of my “eff you, cancer” campaign, I bought myself a scarlet dress to wear to my first chemo session, and planned to buy a red lipstick to match tomorrow.

I got the dress today, and it’s lovely. Only problem is, it’s designed for someone with way bigger boobs than me.

I tried it on when I got home from work, and went downstairs after getting changed back out of it again, lamenting to Ian, “Just how big do they think your boobs need to BE to fit that dress!”

Stalking my way through the living room to get a consolatory glass of wine from the kitchen, I hear Ricky in the background going “But Mummy, your boobies ARE big!” which I admit raised a smile from me, except that he came into the kitchen to follow this up with, “look how saggy they are!”

Well, thank you, my little darling. Those same saggy boobs kept you alive for the first two months of your life, and Robbie alive for the first ten months!!! πŸ˜€

Plus, the way things are at the moment, they may be slightly droopy these days but at least they are still THERE!!!

My beautiful son has clearly inherited the male gene for lack of tact in this area… πŸ™‚

For the record, he made me laugh so hard that he got given some chocolate!


Those Feckers in Work!!!

So, I normally avoid blogging about my job. I think I’ve mentioned that I am happy in my job, and that the people I work with are great, but that’s as far as I’ve taken it.

There’s a good reason for this. Most of the folk I work with know about my blog, and some of them even actively read it. Some of their relatives read it too (hello, Pamela!!) πŸ˜›

BUT. There’s something I just can’t keep to myself any more.

Recently, I’ve been feeling really irritated as I sit at my desk. It started a few months back, though I’m not exactly sure when. It’s one of those things that gradually builds, if you know what I mean, and before you know it, it’s a constant thorn in your side.

The engineers initially put it down to PMT, I think, but behind closed doors, they know it’s something more serious. I even think they are feeling it themselves, hidden away in the office they share. I’ve even heard them complaining about it, in fact they called my colleage Joanne to complain about it a few days ago when they thought I couldn’t hear.

It’s just…I don’t know…a BUZZ….nothing you could put your finger on…

Only winding you up, guys. The “tiny black fly” issue is driving us all mad.

I don’t know where they came from, or how to get rid of them. Joanne has become the Mrs. Miyagi of the office and is the only one who can save us- she is able to kill them with only her two hands. πŸ˜› The engineers keep calling her into their office to deal with the annoying little buggers.

Before people reply saying to put bowls of vinegar around the place- I tried that in my house, and it didn’t work. I don’t even know what they are living on, but they are driving us all BATTY!!!!! πŸ˜€

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