Jane Ballot

Being me in the world

Thursday 26th March

I went for a run at the dam this evening – something I haven’t done for a long time. It was nice to be running the route I have run many times before, well, part of it anyway. I can still only run a limited distance at a slow pace. Slowly, slowly, though, I will get fitter.

I have a new discomfort when I run: the feeling is starting to come back in the site of the mastectomy and my right underarm and these either get bounced around, or just get pulled when I run, so they are quite uncomfortable.

Oh boy, just something new to deal with!

It’s good that the feeling is starting to come back even more strongly. There have been hints of this for a while, but now there is real evidence that the nerves are starting to work properly again. As pleased as I am at this next sign of returning to normal, I am also a little trepidatious because I remember a friend telling me that, once the feeling started coming back, the site of her mastectomy became almost hyper-sensitive. From one extreme to the next.

Not, of course, that there is any guarantee that this will definitely happen to me. I have, after all, learnt a number of times that there seem to be very few commonalities between patients with breast cancer.

Actually, I’m not sure that that’s the term to use – patients. Perhaps it would be better to say ‘sufferers’, as I am, surely, no longer a patient.

On one hand, I can legitimately describe myself as a ‘survivor’, I suppose. That is the term that seems to be commonly used to describe someone who has had cancer and who has been treated successfully.

And I am – a survivor. No matter what new challenge this cancer thing throws at me, I will definitely make the most of everything and make sure that I forge ahead, stronger than before.

Today was a day of the chemo taste. I have had it the whole day very, very strongly. This has not been fun at all. Apart from tasting the horrible taste with literally every breath, it also reminds me of the less happy times during chemo and the aftermath. I don’t understand why, after all these months, I would be tasting it so badly. It really must go now!

I am reminded that the oncologist said it can take up to 3 / 4 months to get rid of all the side effects. Well, it’s getting on for 3 months since the last chemo, so maybe the taste and everything else will eventually go.

Maybe not. Who knows? There are, after all, no absolutes and no guarantees with this cancer thing!

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