Friday, 19 October 2012

Battle Scars

I have many battle scars that I will have to live with. Today I am leaving to begin a new chapter in my story. I am going away travelling for two and a half months by MYSELF!!

Today is not as stressful as I thought it would be. I have packed everything and am ready to leave. I will miss Mum and Dad but I think that it is important for me to do this. It is a big step of me regaining my independence and confidence back.

Poor Dad and Mum though. At this point in time I am healthier than my doctors would have hoped I would have been but I am also not as healthy as Mum and Dad would have wanted me to be. I still get tired and I still have trouble walking long distances and standing up for long periods of time.

I went and saw my physio on Tuesday and he said that my leg has reached a plateau. I still can't really bend my leg ninety degrees which means that I will always have trouble going up and down stairs but today is a beautiful day in which I set off on a brand new chapter.

Today the battle scars that I have are part of who I am but they do not define who I am.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Up Up And Away

Sorry I haven't updated this in a while. I was so preoccupied about getting ready to go to Chicago and saying goodbye to friends, which I admit is a little over dramatic as I am only really gone for two weeks... For now anyway!

I still find it difficult to say 'I had cancer' as it still feels very real to me but as I am starting out on my journey I feel I am truly beginning a new sort of chapter in my life. Not to say I am leaving my old life behind but as to create new beginnings  in a life forever changed.

Anyway, the more I thought about it the more I thought that I should start a new blog and leave this for cancer related purposes as my experience with dog is now much more sporadic and not consuming my life as my life starts to move in different and exciting directions.

Naming this blog was a difficult thing for me to do. Much harder than my experience of walking the dog was. I think it was because I had more time to mull it over and thus more naming options. I found it difficult to find me the right one. 

However I have decided to call it 'Plan B'. As my life is 'Plan B'. It's not turned out how it was supposed to go and it will never be what it used to be but that's ok because different is not a bad thing. (The link to the blog as at the bottom of this page). 

Luckily the test results I had before I went away were still according to this plan and showed me to still be in the all clear! However they made me have THREE of my immunizations again in ONE day! My arm was sore for like a week after.

I am lucky that the only sickness I have had recently is a sore arm and a cold. It's makes for a nice change of pace!

Check out my new blog at:

Friday, 31 August 2012

The Longest Year Of My Life

I'm not kidding when I say it has been THE longest year of my life. Not one other year has had such lows or one that has changed me so much. It has now been one year since I was diagnosed. I cannot believe that one year has come and gone. It feels like a lifetime ago that I was a normal teenager with hair and just a sore knee.

I sent the year off in style with an awesome party with copious amounts of drinking and dancing, it was the best way I could have imagined to finish a horrible year and set the scene for what is to come and oh is there ever things to come.

Today, I went to Victoria University open day. It was such a nice day and it made me really look forward to next year. It sounds so interesting and exciting but also it's getting closer to the time that I am going traveling!!!

I have booked a Contiki which is UBER exciting!! I am going with my lovely friend Steven Petris who is one of the most lovely friends I could have asked for. He however will murder me for giving away that he is secretly a wonderful person. I'm going away for three months in 23 days!!!

But before I can even contemplate that I am going to Auckland to visit the suregon, Christchurch to visit my friends down there and to Hawkes Bay to stay with my grandma! Life is going once again at such a fast pace and I could not be happier.

I am healthy, I am happy and it's amazing. To not wake up every day and want to vomit or not to walk up the stairs and need a sleep!! Even having enough energy to have a shower is a massive achievement!!!

Not everything is perfect but it's so much better that I really cannot complain. I truly am blessed with a wonderful bunch of friends and an amazing family. Speaking of which my amazing cousins all came to stay for my birthday!!! Don't they look dashing???

Monday, 13 August 2012

How A Haircut Can Hurt

Miley Cyrus is such a beautiful girl, no matter what you think of her music this is a fact. At the moment all over Facebook is pictures of her 'radical' new hair cut and it kind of hurts me looking at the comments that some people are making about her.

Miley Cyrus is a stunning girl who rocks short hair or long hair. I on the other hand am very ordinary but when people call someone who looks like she does "ugly", "a butch looking dyke", "dumbf**k" and so many more names it shouldn't hurt me but it does.

Is that what people think of me when they walk along the street? If someone who looks like her can't be considered beautiful with short hair what is the chances that I can? I find it difficult to accept the way I look because it has changed so much but how can I like how I look if nobody else does?

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Scarfie For A Week

Last week I turned into a scarfie who awkwardly had no scarf as I forgot it. That's right! I braced the cold and saw my friends in Dunedin and what a wonderful week it was. I have not been as happy as I was during that week in the longest time.

I arrived on Wednesday the 25th of July and stayed til Wednesday the 1st of August!!! It was the most amazing time running around and seeing where everyone lived and catching up with them!! I went out for the most fabulous meals, saw the most amazing people and I even had a shot of Madori while partying in the cook!!

I almost felt like a normal teenager. I still have a long way to go to being like everyone else, I still occasionally need naps in the afternoon and my leg still hurts if I push it too far!! But life is looking up. I actually cannot wait til it's me at University!

This is a photo of the lovely QMC girly dinner!!

 The lovely Sarah and Kate and I had a lovely girls night in watching 'Finding Nemo' and having a cheeky few. The blue thing's are shark lollies because obviously they wanted to go swimming!

I used to have trouble even imagining my life would be like it is now!! Everything is happening so quickly, time is seeming to fly by. I have now been back for over a week (I needed a wee bit of recovery time!) but it only seems like I just got back!

It's nearly my birthday too which means that it has nearly been a year since all of this started. I was diagnosed on the 25th of August last year, the day before my birthday and in 16 days it will be my one year of living with cancer.

1/19 of my life. It feels like a lifetime ago that I was a normal eighteen year old. I don't think I ever will be normal again. I think in a way this will affect me for the rest of my life. Not just physically with things like not being able to play sports and being limited with movement but also mentally it will always be a part of me.

But as I move further on I make new memories that don't relate to cancer. It will always be there but there is life after cancer and those who care that I had cancer don't matter and those who don't care at all do.

I love working at the library because the kids do not care about anything, not what you look like but just if you are nice or not. It also supplies great entertainment. Today a little boy came into the library crying, apparently some girl had given him a hug and he now he had girl cooties and they were incurable. He said this as he was hugging me, he then looked up and said "Oh no!!! You're a girl too!!!" and howled harder.

Thankfully cancer is not contagious but obviously girl cooties are.

Monday, 16 July 2012

A Confused Working Girl

Today I officially became a working girl!! Or a volunteering girl. I have come to the end of my constant lunching and brunching. This however is amazing. I am volunteering at the Plimmerton School library helping out the lovely librarian Fiona with anything and everything.

It feels amazing to be useful again. It also makes the time when you are not working feel more like downtime making it more special. I also went for my first trip to the Porirua pool today. I managed to swim a measly six lengths before retiring to the spa but as the weather was so grot outside the spa was actually rather lovely!

I have been keeping myself busy and I am sure annoying my friends to the brink of insanity. It was interesting because one night I was at a mates flat and some guy who I hardly know said to me "Why do you always talk about cancer? It's over and it's kinda depressing that you always talk about it."

These weren't his actual words but just the general gist of what he was asking me. It got me thinking, do I talk about cancer too much?  Am I obsessed? Is it really over??? I asked two of my friends if they thought I talked about it to much. One said yes, one said no.

I don't think I am obsessed and I think maybe it is over for everyone else but not for me. I also realized that this is what I have done for the past year. It's such a big part of my life. Everything in my life for the past year has centered around it but what to do? 

I don't want people to feel uncomfortable around me by talking about cancer all the time but I still want people to feel comfortable to ask questions if they want. I think maybe it's just time will mean it will be less of a presence in my life and more things will take center stage. 

Becoming a working girl is just another step to becoming normal again.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

A Happy Freak

So life is better than amazing right now. I have been having the most amazing last couple of weeks! Last week most of my friends came back to Wellington. I was busy morning til night and then early hours of the dawn. Dad almost killed me when he got my food bill for last week alone. I am lucky he loves me so.

Right now, I am writing from my lovely room in the goregous Sea Temple hotel in Port Douglas. Mum and Dad really pushed the boat out and this place is FANCY!! I feel properly spoiled! It's a poolside apartment which is swim-in swim-out!

This is the deck from our apartment! 

As you probably can tell I am incredibly white. I was almost translucent when I got here but hopefully it is slowly going. What it means is I have to be onto it with the sunblock. No more cancer for me. Hopefully! 

It's been a bit strange going out so much. I forgot a bit how different I look to everyone else. It's funny because I quite often catch people staring and I always wonder what I look like to someone who doesn't know. Do I still look sick? 

I would have thought that I wouldn't still feel like the sick kid but I do. It's not so much sick but invalid. My leg feels different. It's like it knows that their is something foreign in it, something not right. It just doesn't want to work as well as it did.

It doesn't stop me acting like a teenager again. I went to a party on Friday and Saturday and it was amazing because I managed to stand for long periods and even dance!! I think the fact that I was rather intoxicated helped me not notice!! 

Last week though I even managed to go shopping with my friend I managed to walk for 45 mins as well as try on clothes!! And I managed to find a dress which made me feel pretty which is really rather hard. 
My pretty!!

As much as I  try to pretend it doesn't bother me, my appearance really is something which depresses me. I look so abnormal and at eighteen your appearance is a big part of who you are. My appearances have changed and its hard because it means every time I look in the mirror I am reminded that I am a freak. Different. 

But to be fair, I am a happy freak. I am healthy and I am lapping up the sun in Port Douglas! I am even going to visit some crocodiles and some snakes tomorrow and if I am really lucky I might even get to cuddle a koala! I am a happy freak, a happy freak I am.   


Friday, 22 June 2012

To Be Human

I am no longer an alien. I no longer have probes sticking out of me!!! Today, I got my Hickman line taken out. Today, I took a step forward to being a normal teenager once again. I ended up having to have surgery to get it out but it is finally done and I am so happy!!!

It is a big step as it means that my blood counts are returning to normal! My parents are really excited by this, for me it was just another thing I had to do on the way to get better. What was more exciting for me was the feeling I had when I stayed over on Sunday at a friend's place.

It was odd, we were sitting in the lounge and they were taking the piss out of me for being so spoilt, keeping me grounded as only good friends can do. I was hogging the couch when I realized something, I didn't feel like a sick kid at all. I felt like a normal teenager hanging out with their mates.

It's not that I mind talking about being sick because it is part of who I am, it's what my life is based around at the moment. It was more the fact that whenever I used to leave hospital I would feel great because I would be healthier than most of the people on the ward but as soon as I got home I would realize how sick I still was compared to a normal person but I don't feel that anymore, I don't feel like I am on the same level yet but I am no longer looking at them like their level of health is a million times higher than mine.

I'm getting there.

PS Happy Birthday Toby, thank you for always being there whether it was bringing me my cheeseburgers or putting up with my bad jokes and just being a generally amazing friend.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

A Little Kindness

It's not hard to commit a random act of kindness. In Wellington, my favorite restaurant is a place called Arthur's. They have such yummy food but they are so nice to me every time I go in there. It's not hard to make my day but the fact that the staff there always so welcoming and nice. It makes it such a lovely experience going there.

When I was at Lady Gaga, I saw these two Japanese ladies in the seats in front of me and they had on the coolest colored wigs that I had ever seen. While we were waiting for Lady Gaga to go on I asked where they had got their wigs from and they replied that they had got them from Japan. 

I thought that this would be the end of our conversation but these lovely ladies came up to me after the show and asked me what my address was as they would send me their wigs. This was such unexpected kindness. These woman did not know me from a dot yet they were so kind.

These woman show what extraordinary people live on this earth. I found it so amazing they would chose to go so far out of their way for a stranger.   

This is one of gorgeous pink wig that arrived in the mail. 

PS Happy Birthday Jannie. I love you to the moon and back! xoxo

Monday, 11 June 2012

What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger

Today I managed 7.5km on the bike!! It's great because it means that my energy levels are coming back!! It's crazy to think that exactly 6 weeks ago I was getting out of hospital and having only enough energy to walk from my bed to the couch and only retreating back to bed when it was time to sleep usually having a nap on the couch during the afternoon. 

On Thursday, I went up to Auckland to the surgeon who said my leg is progressing well which is exciting!! Then we had lunch with one of our great family friends!!! I then had to have a nap but that evening we went to LADY GAGA!!! 

She was amazing!! She had a five level castle, more costume changes than you could count and she is an amazing performer. How she dances and sings like that for two and a half hour. It made me tired just watching her!! I spent the next 2 days in Auckland catching up with friends which was amazing. 

On Sunday, as I have done for many years I went to see the Warren Miller ski movie with the Walsh's. When I was younger I used to look at these movies and dream about being in them. I probably never would have been because those movies contain the best skiers in the world but it did make me realize that I could never do that now, never ski like that ever and that sucked.

Some dreams like skiing in a Warren Miller film or sailing in the Volvo Ocean Race probably never would have come true but it's hard to know that I am physically never going to be able to complete those dreams but I guess this gives way to new dreams.

Six weeks ago how I am now would seem like a dream. My dreams have changed through this whole experience, it's not that I have lost my old ones, I still would like to work for the UNCHR at some point in my life. I still want to help people too but I have new dreams like dancing with Anthony when he comes back from Dunedin or meddling in Toby's love life or just having lunch with Kate but more than anything I want to stay cancer free.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

And Off I Go!!

I drove and IT WAS SO MUCH FUN!!! I forgot how much I like to drive. My mother and father got a manual car when my baby bruce decided to give up on life. I am not ashamed to say that I suck at driving a manual.

Driving a manual sapped a lot of confidence as I had learned how to drive in an auto and I had never driven a manual. I am VERY uncoordinated and it just didn't come very naturally. About 2 weeks before my diagnosis I finally was getting it but it had hit my confidence a lot.

While driving the manual I stopped enjoying driving so much and more than just being able to drive. I am no longer stuck in my house. My friend Ollie came over last week after I had spent the day alone and at home, I may have gone a bit insane. Just a tad. He may have picked up on this and compared me to a coped up chicken.

There is only so much daytime tv you can watch and after a while you just need to get out and the best thing about having a car is that I finally have the freedom to do that!!

It may be a small step but it's a step and I intend to celebrate every little step.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Monster's Under The Bed

I have monster's under my bed, I have even more monster's in my head.

I hate sleeping. It's really awful. I always used to think that sleeping was such a waste of time but now I hate it for a new reason. The dreams won't stop coming. They aren't even dreams. I have nightmares.

They started about a week and a half ago and now I have them every time I close my eyes. I never really have got nightmares before but they scare me like no tomorrow. Last night, I managed to get to sleep at about midnight and at about 2am I woke up and I just couldn't handle being in my room. I had to get up and I went on the Exercycle trying to clear my head and when that didn't work I ended up watching cartoons for hours trying to get the nightmare out of my head.

I could deal with the nightmares if they were to do with spiders or heights but of course they are about cancer. For example last night I was suddenly in the most excruciating pain (it was like just after my surgery when the epidural didn't work) and I saw a little morphine tablet on the table next to me. I quickly took it trying to get rid of the awful pain but then it turned out to be full of maggots which then started eating me inside out. Suddenly they became restraints holding me to a vertical bed and I had to sit and watch as a procession of people had chemo injected into them and I could do absolutely nothing but watch.

 I hate going to sleep because there are monsters in my head.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

The Oreo Life

I was stalking the internet and look what I found!!
And anyway's this random comic got me thinking. Today was a rather big day!! I went out for lunch with some of my friends and then I went back to my friends hostel and hung out with her and her new friends and then I went out to dinner with some friends!!!!!! I WAS OUT FOR SEVEN HOURS!!!

I cannot remember the last time I managed this, to be fair I was sitting down the whole time but at least I was able to be out!!! I have been kind of pessimistic the last few weeks as I have been feeling rotten and glad chemo is over but I have still been grumbling about being sick.

As my wise friend said "Things are looking up, oh finally!!"

Friday, 11 May 2012

The Silver Screen

This new Harriet certainly gets cold easy and I say new Harriet because I think it sounds better than post cancer Harriet. This is what I always will be now. The people who meet me from now on probably will remember me as 'that chick who had cancer' and I guess I am. It's not like I want to wear it like a badge of honor but I don't really have a choice.

These scars are thing that will stay with me for the rest of my life no matter how much bio oil I use. People will ask 'how did you get that???' because who would expect the reply. The reply I am thinking of giving is 'I saw this kid getting beaten up, I ran over to help and the guy pulled out a knife. He managed to get me a few times but at least the kid got away.' and when I get the reply of 'REALLY?!?!' I, of course, will confess the truth but really which would you believe??

I am still at home, my immunity is going down again. It kills me a little because it's hard because I just want to go out and party and dance and be ridiculous but I can't. My leg is getting better but I still can't really walk properly. I have a limp but at least it's progress.

The local video hire has become my new best friend. My brain has been really fried so I am trying to read but at the moment I am still struggling with magazines so blobbing and watching endless amounts of movies seems to pass the time well.

I seem to have a lot of it and every-one seems to be busy during the week with uni and work and so begin's my love affair with the silver screen.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

The Brain Dance

I would like to introduce you to something that is very dear to me. My darling reader I would like you to meet my completely normal brain.

When I had the seizure the main concern was for my brain. This lovely beautiful and completely wonderful scan shows that my brain is perfectly healthy and normal. The main worry was that I had a brain hemorrhage. 

"A brain hemorrhage is a type of stroke. It's caused by an artery in the brain bursting and causing localized bleeding in the surrounding tissues. This bleeding kills brain cells." So I am doing a little dance for my perfectly healthy brain.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Would You Feed This To Your Dog?

I have not exactly had the best couple of weeks. Last I wrote on here, maja had just brought me Hugo while she was down south with her friends for her birthday. The next day (the day before I was due to be readmitted anyway) I ended up going back into hospital because I was generally very unwell.

I really couldn’t eat much. Anything I tried to eat I would vomit or it would end up coming out in some lovely diarrhea so I really wasn’t getting any nutrients in. I really do put my parents through hell sometimes.

Now I have to quote my Dad about what happened because unfortunately I have no recollection of the next events.

“On Wednesday night just after Tom left for the night Harriet was found unconscious and unrousable by a nurse seeing her roommate. They called the crash team and she came around slowly. She had had a convulsion, not witnessed so we dont know how long for. She had a CT scan of her head overnight that was normal but she has ecg abnormalities and low potassium and other electrolytes. She was transferred to the coronary care unit for monitoring. She was quite out of it overnight and her brain has not been functioning well since, but at least she doesn't remember anything.” 
And I really can’t remember anything much from last Wednesday as my friends Sophie and Ollie discovered last night when I couldn’t even really remember them coming to visit on Friday but everything is getting better.

My Oncologist Anne has decided that it is too dangerous to continue with Chemo so chemo is all over. I still have to come in at least once a week for a while and do tests and stuff and apparently next week I could be quite sick because I am coming off all my drugs which my body has got so used to.

It was interesting talking to Mum today because we were talking about all my medications, especially one called cyclizine which I did not know but when it is given through the IV line can be addictive. I really hate the idea that I could be addicted to something but I do wonder if I was just a little.

I know I like it because it is what works best. I can have three different forms of pills and then half an hour later hopefully I will feel better or I can have cyclizine and five minutes later I feel better. It really does work very well and that’s great because up until now all I have cared about is not vomiting, feeling functional and all that.

It is scary though how easily it could happen though, to be fair if my mum had told me cyclizine could be addictive I probably would have just stopped taking it because I hate the idea that I could become dependent on something.

It show’s how easy it would be to become dependent on all these things. I thought and still do think I like cyclizine because it works so well but what if I am wrong??

I am very happy because I am now going to be sort of finished chemo. It’s going to take me about another month to 2 months to feel normal again but I can handle that. What’s two months in the grand scheme of things??

It’s weird because it sort of just stopped. I still thought I had another month and a half of chemo to go and now I am sort of reeling. I want to say it’s an amazing feeling and it is but there is just that feeling of it being too good to be true.

I’m done but now what? I actually have no clue. I have spent the past 8 months geared towards getting to this point but now what?? I am in this sort of limbo because I am not better but I am not having chemo anymore.

Anyway I thought I would leave you with some food for thought. I know I have avoided eating hospital food for the last 8 months by getting family & friends to bring me a constant supply and the picture can’t really leave you with a proper impression of the smell but would you feed your dog this?

Sunday, 15 April 2012


My mummy got me a puppy!!! However, wasn't really the sort of puppy I was expecting... let me introduce you to Hugo (and a happy-ish looking maja)

He may not be exactly what I asked for but as maja says "it's the closest thing to a dog you are getting from me". So I will just have to love Hugo with all my heart and accept that my attempt at attaining a cute wee puppy may not be very attainable.

As for actual progress, I seemed to be healthy the first couple of days out but it sort of went downhill from there. From about Wednesday on everything I ate or drank ended up coming out of me one way or another, neither pleasant.

So it's now Monday and I am back in hospital and will reside here for a good couple of weeks. Things better be getting close to the end because I am not sure how much more my poor body will take. 

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Easter Filled Fun

I am finally home, I have a sore throat, but, lucky for me my temperature is not sky high for now anyways!! :) I had an amazing Easter and ate way too much chocolate and left myself feeling rather sick, thank you anti-nausea drugs!!! I hope everyone else was naughty and ate way too much too!!! Otherwise I am way to badass for my own good.

I think I kinda rule out being a badass considering I have spent the last two months in hospital. It's kinda hard keeping up your "badass" pretense when you are as sick as a dog!! But I am finally out and Anthony is back!!!! As is nearly everyone from Uni!!!!

I kinda excited coz I can see the end of the treatment but ahhh another 3 week block starting next Monday but until then I am a free chicken!!! As long as I don't start to roast and get temperatures, if so hospital will be mine again.

My mun went on her girls walk in the middle week of my treatment. It was our first big separation since this treatment started and it was surprisingly hard. She now knows everything and is very good at organizing me. I think she missed me too because look what she brought back!!!

Every time I have had surgery I have been a little cheeky and teasing mum about how she doesn't want me to have another because then she has to get me another charm on my Tiffany and Co charm bracelet. Never actually thinking she would get me one because Tiffany and Co are places that mothers shop, not Harriet's. However, she surprised me with this beauty!! I have 5 pretty charms, not six because apparently six looked a bit odd!!!

I am wearing it in hospital because I may have been allowed out one night last saturday night to attend my friend Catherine's wedding!!!! :) And I must give my big congrats!!

One week later I went and saw Geraldine Brophy's new play 'Floral Notes'. It was very good, apart from  Geraldine's character happened to get breast cancer and die. I hate movies and books to do with Cancer. Originally when I got sick I kept everything they gave me, but as time went on I realized it depressed me to read about it.

Ollie probably know's more of the specific's of my treatment. I kinda just take it as it comes and try not to look forward too far. It depresses me sometimes because although I can see the end of my treatment I still have another 5 weeks of chemo.

Strangely I think my hair is starting to grow back!!! Even though I am having chemo I am not having Cisplatin so maybe these ones don't make you loose you hair. I have now a nice sprinkle of stubble on my head!!!!!

Gosh, life is sooo odd. Let's just eat more chocolate!!!

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

The Body Doth Protest

My body has decided to stage a revolt. It has had enough of what I have been putting it through and has decided that enough is enough. I went into hospital on Tuesday morning feeling pretty crap because Pan and I had broken up the night before and were just generally feeling under the weather.

As I was sitting in the waiting room my breakfast decided that it didn't like my stomach so up it comes. It turns out that my entire digestive tract has had become inflamed and irritated so it's going to come out one way or another and hurt like no tomorrow doing it.

So I have had to put off doing chemo this week as my body is having to heal itself which involves me drinking some foul concoction three times a day, having salt baths and more random doctorish things that I love so much.

So yay for this week and being not so healthy.

Friday, 16 March 2012

What We Dream About

I found this photo while I was doing my nightly hunting on the internet and as you sometimes do you feel a connection with a photo or phrase and this one happened to catch mine and I wondered why.

I think it's because I seem to spend all of my time in hospital and all I want to do is go back to the time when life was easy, carefree. It's true, I may have partyed too much but the way I figure it is life is precious and I had no intention of wasting it. 

I want to do so much but I physically can't. I can't even walk THREE HUNDRED metres without feeling like I have walked a marathon. It's so hard because I have been doing this for so long and I just cannot wait for it to be over.

I dream of the days when I can be like everyone else. When my parents yell at me for spending too much money or my brother gets pissed off because I keep on trying to offload my jobs onto me, where I am not a burden on my family.

They are amazing and never complain but I know it's soo hard on them because this has taken over their lives. It's not that I don't appreciate it because I do but I just wish that this had never happened to them. They are very good people.

It just show's how quickly life can change.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

The Cutest Wee Visitor

I had the cutest wee visitor yesterday. I managed to get out of hospital late saturday afternoon and managed to spend a lovely Sunday and Monday catching up with a few close friends and my adorable new one. Her name is Penny and she is 10 weeks old!! She was so cute I thought I would share!!

Friday, 9 March 2012

A Not-So-Quick Update

I have now been in bed for so long I have officially got bed sores!! The past three weeks have been rather rotten. I ended up having to have my Hickman line replaced not last Thursday but the Thursday before. The other one ended up having a rip in it. Who knows how that happened!!!

On the Friday (yes the very next day!) I started chemo but one little thing was different from usual. They forgot to give me the aprepitant and steroids so as soon as the chemo started so did the vomiting. I threw up every pill and was vomiting for about 2 hours until they managed to get it under control. That, in conjunction with just having a general anesthetic and the general fact I was having Cisplatin I was left feeling rather rotten.

 I managed to get out of hospital on the Monday, only to have to go back in on the Wednesday because of a temperature. Luckily I was not neutropenic this time and was sent home with antibiotics. I was still feeling quite rotten all week. We had our lovely friends come up from Christchurch for the weekend and it was absolutely amazing to see them, I wish I had been better but I guess that's not how life goes. On Sunday I ended up having to come back into hospital and I was much sicker.

I had developed severe mucositis which meant I could not really eat or drink anything because my throat was so raw which left me feeling miserable but to top it off my immune system had decided it had enough and i was neutropenic again. Also my red blood cell levels were very low so I had to have two blood transfusions. My platelets were low too so I had to have two platelet transfusions.

I also had low magnesium and potassium. Also on the Monday I got a migrane so that left me throwing up and feeling generally awful. I am finally feeling better and hopefully will be leaving hospital tomorrow.

Let's hope the sun will shine tomorrow.

Friday, 24 February 2012

A Cry For Help

Help needed. I have been put in a double room. I need as many visitors as possible.

1. I am bored but but too sick to do much.
2.  The more visitors I have the more likely I am to get complaints.

The stories of O week are awesome!! I miss you all like mad but glad to see you're having a good time.

I am in bed 35, pod c, ward 5 north and should be here til Monday lunch!! Love you all!


Sunday, 19 February 2012

I Am Different

I finally did it. I changed my Facebook profile picture to one that actually looks like me. I know it seems like something stupid but I always love looking at the photo's of me with hair. I really was quite pretty but as much as I hate to admit it, that was a lifetime ago.

Tonight at dinner with my family we were talking about last year. As Tom said "I have memories from when I was eight years old that seem more recent than that time." We have been stuck in this time for a long time now.

It was hard last week, there were problems with my Hickman line. This is the third one and if I have to get it taken it out.... well lets just say painful is an understatement. To get out a hickman line out (a line which has to be put in surgically) is literally just tugged out, no anesthetic needed.

More importantly it messes with my schedule. I have started to plan things for the future and things for now. It's hard because a lot of my friends left for uni last week and I may have got a little lonely in hospital so to try and make it easier I am trying to organize things in the little time I am out to look forward to. I have also invested in some more coloring-in books.

 Don't you think my Postman Pat is beautiful???

Monday, 13 February 2012

Another Week

It's finally here. You are all leaving. HELP!!!!

I may be a little bit of an emotional wreck this week. I am about to let my Anthony and millions onto the world. It's odd because I have known that this point in time is coming for a while but now it's finally here. 

My friend Toby was over. Toby for all those who doesn't know is amazing. He is one of my best mates and one of the coolest cats you have ever met. Anyway on Monday we were lying on my bed listening to music and just generally chatting when I realized that I won't have the beautiful pleasure of just being in his company.

Today is valentines day! Joy for commercialism but hey! Pan wrote me a card and in it he wrote "My favorite thing is when we just... are. A simple moment. Quiet. Unassuming. And then you say something and suddenly the world seems beautiful... different. clearer" and this is so true but not only of Pan but all my friends. 

I just love being with you. Toby, Ollie, Caitlin, Jess, Hannah, Kate, Sarah... I just could go on forever, I have that many amazing friends. I really hope you all know how amazing you are to me. Just spending time with me in hospital, I know it's hard but thank you.

I do go insane in here. Visits from everyone make me sane, well as sane as I ever am. BUT GOD HELP ME!! I AM GOING TO MISS YOU!!!!!!!! 

Friday, 10 February 2012

I Could Never Ask For Better

I am so close yet so far. My methotrexate levels are 0.02 too high. This is soo annoying as I got them down from being in the hundreds to 0.08 but I guess this is what my life is, just waiting to be told that I am adequately healthy to being dragged back to become sick yet again.

The end is in sight but not so close that I can begin to get really excited. On this day in a term and a half I will be dancing like there is no tomorrow and that's because there will be no chemo tomorrow or hopefully ever again but that is a about 15 weeks away.

At the moment I am having to say goodbye to my friends. They are all moving on with their lives. It was really hard last night because one of my best friends Toby came in to see me. I am going to have afternoon tea with him on Monday but this was the last tine with it just being us.

I couldn't really help it, I am rather ashamed but I was a bit of mess. He as with so many of my friends have been here week in week out.

Chemo is hard but not just for me, it's hard for everyone. My friends who have watched me going from the overly social healthy 18 year old to nothing more than a shell who is so sick that I hardly remember what I saying. They have been there for it all.

I couldn't ask for a better group of friends. So thank you for being there and I love you.

Tuesday, 31 January 2012


I am so happy, it's hard to describe how I am feeling. I keep on randomly breaking down into tears because I am soo happy. I can't stop laughing, crying and smiling out of sheer joy.

When I got my bad histology results I had to slowly came to terms with the fact that I was unlikely to live past the age of 20. I had to at 18 years old face the fact that it was unlikely that I would live long enough to see my brother start university.

I startred to look over my life and appreciate how lucky I have been. I have had one of the most amazing life. Most people don't get to see the sun set in Africa, the beauty that is the sunflower fields in the south of France, explore Petra (a city that was lost for hundreds of year), sail on the Turkish sea's, ski in the mountains in Japan, America and Canada and so many more experiences.

Then I thought about the people I love and those who I would leave behind, I thought about what I could do to make loosing me easier for them. I thought about how I could make the fact that they lost a sister, a daughter, a niece, a best friend.

I had to thank god about how lucky I had been to experience so many amazing experiences and been introduced to so many amazing people. I had to thank god for the life that he let me live.

When I had my bad histology results I had accepted the fact that I would not grow to be old, I had to say goodbye to those I loved. I was thinking about not continuing with chemo because I didn't want to spend the little time I had being sick.

And now I am going to live, I don't have to think about how my death would hurt those who love me so much. I am so unbelievably grateful for this. So unbelievebly happy that I start randomly crying because I so happy that  I AM GOING NOWHERE!

I AM GOING TO LIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, 27 January 2012

The Life Of An Addict

I had a brain wave this morning. This does not happen often but it was so obvious it has been crazy. I have finally managed to completely stop taking all morphine which is so nice because it means that the pain is getting less and less.

I realized this morning that the reason I have been feeling so sick is because I have been feeling the symptoms of withdrawal. I stopped taking morphine on Sunday and I was thinking that it's quite odd because I have been feeling rather sick and horrible, getting chills and sweats, diarrhea, insomnia and odd random shooting pains.

I contributed everything to the fact that chemo had been so horrible but normally by this point the only residual effect I have from chemo is less energy. It sucks so much because I have to feel sick still. I actually ate soo much food on Thursday when I got the good news I made myself sick!!! Mum was out at a work dinner so poor Pan and my friend Kate had to clean it up. They are seriously such good friends and I owe them BIG TIME!!!

I am excited because Dad and Tom are coming home tomorrow!!! It may sound odd but things like this really show you what matter in life. In some ways I am lucky to have had an experience which has opened my eyes so much. I used to complain about my family like every teenager I know.

"Mum won't get me this." "Dad said I can't go to that" but you know what? I am so lucky I actually have such an amazing family. Poor mum has had to run around after me like a house elf because I haven't been able to do much and she is so lovely like she doesn't even complain.

On the topic of lucky, I have officially dated Pan for  5 months today which is pretty impressive considering he asked out a girl who he knew had cancer. He is the stuff of legends, he literally is so amazing to me. He helps me out with anything and is always there. He even lets his brother and I stick on a beautiful temporary tattoo that was a pick heart made out of flowers.

So... I may be an addict but at least I am a lucky one.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

I Adore You Anne!!!

Anne O'Donnell is my oncologist, she is a seriously amazing woman. She is so kind and hard working and has given me the BEST NEWS EVER!!!

Anne has just called me and told me that she had sent off my histology results for a second opinion because she is amazing like that and wanted to be sure because clinically my leg had improved so much. It stopped being sore and went down and everything pointed towards the idea that the chemo HAD WORKED.

AND GUESS WHAT!!!!!! IT DID!!!! The second opinion came back different. So she sent it to the world expert who said that the histology  were actually 98%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This means that I now don't have to have the worse chemo's!!!!!!!! AND EVEN BETTER my prognosis for kicking the cancer is conservatively at 80%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anne O'Donnell, I really do love you.

Dancing In The Rain

This morning I woke up to such a lovely message from one of the girls who I went to school with. She had found this quote on the internet and had thought of me. This is so lovely in itself but I have been having a really hard week with chemo, last week was the worst chemo yet.

I actually chucked my guts up from it which has never happened before. It's rather impressive when you consider that in hospital I have a pump which injects 2 different anti-nausea drugs into my arm, I also take an aprepitant, multiple steroids and about 5 form of oral tablets to try to keep the nausea at bay and it has worked until this time. 

I also have been given a sort of rough end date. If everything goes to plan I should be done with all of this by early August. However apart from feeling glum because I have been feeling so sick and missing my brother and dad (they have been skiing in the US of A for 10 days) I have been feeling kinda irritated.

It took me a while to work out why I have been so but I figured it was down to the fact that I just want to be over now. I have really had enough of feeling sick and not having enough energy to walk anywhere or do anything. I just wanted it to be done now. In short, I think I hit a five month wall. I have done five months but I still have another seven to go. 

This quote that I was shown was:

"Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass... 
It's about learning how to dance in the rain" 
-Vivian Greene

This is so true and it actually made me think about my irateness and I have now finally come to the conclusion that it is stupid to waste my time being irritated. I can't change the fact that there is still another seven months. Moaning and groaning about how long I have left will just put me in a bad mood.

I am in the middle of the biggest hurricane of my life, it's trying battering me every which way. I can hardly walk but I am doing everything I can with a smile because who cares. In the end the storm will pass, so for now I am just going to do my utmost best to be the most obnoxious dancer in the rain.

Monday, 16 January 2012

Let's Hold Hands And Start Again

Tonight, well i guess it's actually morning I am sitting here with a bit shellshocked Anthony. He has just seen my xray's of my leg and I think I scared him a bit which is fair enough as he can be scared. He has been one of my best friends throughout all of this.

Some girls are a bit mean about him because they think that he is "flaky" and "like a typical gay guy" but I am here to tell you he is totally not. He is amazing. He entertains me even on my worst days and never fails to bring a smile to my face.

 I really wish everyone had the pleasure of meeting him as he really is one of the wonderful people I have ever known. He worries about Otago but I am sure he will be fine as because of all reasons mentioned above.

I have to start chemo again tomorrow, lame right?? I am nervous and a bit worried because my oncologist Anne said that it would be harder than most because my body is not used to it anymore and it also happens to be the type of chemo that makes me really sick so YAY/not really.

I have only got one week in hospital so that's good and then I will have another 2 weeks out. Tom and Dad have gone away though, this sucks. For anyone that doesn't know my dad and my brother are both my friends. They are awesome, when I am in hospital they come in every afternoon after school and night after work and feed me.

I am going to miss them heaps. I am a little worried I am going to get lonely in hospital because everyone is soo busy right now enjoying the sun (very little of it ever hits Wellington). Loneliness sucks because there is nothing I can do about it and when I am on chemo I am too sick to do a lot of things so finding a distraction can sometimes be hard.

I am saved when I have visits, people are the most interesting distraction as I love hearing about their lives because everyone has different experiences and problems.

People are interesting.

Friday, 6 January 2012

How Odd Is Life

Tonight I was feeling a little nostalgic for better times after Pan went home, not because we fought but because I had to tell him about the not so good news. He has been on a walk (not a tramp, he lies if he tells you it was) and had not read my latest blog post, it was harder than telling anyone else.

He has already been through so much with me and never once complained when I told him yet again to get me more food, to get me this or that. He has been amazing and more than I deserve. He even puts up with me when I am totally spaced out on drugs and trying to convince him that he should have rampant gay sex with my brother or putting jelly in his hair or any other of the million of things I do.

I hated having to tell them that things again hadn't gone our way and things were going to get harder yet again. So I was looking through my photobooth photos. I have had photobooth since year 9 and my friends are the biggest photo whores I know. Thank you Anthony, Rebekah, Rahera, Claudia and the millions of people who had so many hilarious poses and facials.

I also found a few photos which reminded me how unpredictable life can be.

 This was taken just over a year ago on the day I decided to go blonde again
 This beautiful photo I took with Jess in the July school holidays, one month before my diagnosis
When I got my hair cut short when it started falling out

This was taken in my last set of chemo before surgery
Til tonight. 

Life can change in an instant so appreciate every one, who knows what is around the corner.