Tuesday, February 21, 2012

First week of recovery mode.

It's been one week since radiation finished and so far my scalp seems to be holding together pretty well. Pre-radiation I was advised to expect my scalp to blister, peel and weep - but none of those things have happened so far (touch wood). I am putting down to the fact that I rub about 43829834kg of Moo Goo scalp cream into my head twice a day. I don't know what is in that stuff, but I am sure it has some magical quality. Overall, I am feeling not as bad as I had imagined. I haven't had the vomit monster come and visit me again. I have been feeling nauseous, but luckily I have managed to ward off the vomit monster with a range of drugs. I still feel dizzy at times and feel like I am going to lose my balance, but luckily Barney is never too far away so if I do fall, I will have a soft landing. I am on a reducing dose of steroids and seem to be coping with it well. I still feel angry and short tempered, but instead of my poor mother bearing the brunt of this, I am aiming it at Thomas and Carla from My Kitchen Rules.

The overwhelming feeling I have at the moment is exhaustion. I just feel like I have zero energy and the same amount of motivation - which is so unlike me. I feel like staying in bed, going to sleep and waking up some time in June when I am back to normal. Although, that would mean missing a few of the Reds home games, which of course I would never, ever do! I have been out a few times for short periods and then find that I have to come home and lie down for a few hours to recover. I look forward to the day when I can go to brunch for an hour and then still have energy to do something else. A friend of mine invited me to head up the coast for the day and my first feeling was that I felt nervous about going out for so long, so far from home. I have got to snap out of that! Hopefully, I will be up for a beach trip in the next few weeks. I have been feeling a bit down this week and not wanting to do anything. I have noticed that I have been struggling to remember words, people's names and have been writing down wrong numbers. Also my balance has gotten worse since the radiation finished. Add to that I have hurt my back and now walk like I should be wearing a cloak and living in a remote bell tower in some dark Eastern European county. I am really bummed about not being able to drive for another three months. So, I am taking things in hand and going to try and do something about it. I am going to see an Occupational Therapist who specialises in post-brain surgery and have an assessment. A friend of mine pointed out to me that essentially I have had a brain injury and that there are things I can do to work on it. I would hate to get assessed in May and be told that I can't drive for another three months!

I hate this feeling of running on empty. In true Mama Bear style, I am on every vitamin and nutrient that boosts brain function and recovery known to man. I think there is a correlation between how good something is for you and how gross it looks and tastes. I am on this "super food powder shot" which apparently is amazing, but looks and tastes like dirt. It isn't that bad, once I block my nose to drink it, wash it down with a glass of water and follow it up with a double Kool Mint chaser.

Tomorrow I have my follow up with the neurosurgeon, so will be interesting to hear what he has to say about my progress. I have been doing my balance tests and they have been pretty bad. Although, mum also tried the balance test and let's just say I don't think she is going to qualify as a deep sea diver anytime soon. It is the first Reds home game next Saturday and my aim to to get there and not fall over in the process! Here's hoping the boys will follow up their victory over the Tahs with a squashing of the Force.


  1. Hi Karen, great to see you Sunday. We had a 2hr wait at the PA Hospital Tuesday, so busy they are having a job to fit me in for treatment next Tuesday. Hope the OT can improve things for you. Might me able to can up again once Lara gets back on 11 March. XX Jean


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