Nearly there

On Friday I had treatment number 25 of my 30 radiotherapy sessions. So I’ve got five more to go, which is a week’s worth or would be if the machine wasn’t closed for maintenance tomorrow. It means, assuming no other problems arise, we should be home in Ibiza on Tuesday August 13. Hooray.

Actually finishing on a Monday is, perhaps, not a bad thing. Otherwise we’d arrive at Ibiza airport on Saturday. Ibiza airport on a Saturday in August is not the most relaxed place on earth.

Also, next Wednesday, I have my last dose of chemotherapy. I didn’t have much in the way of side effects from the first one. The second one left me feeling pretty shit for two or three days. Who knows what’ll happen the third time? Again, an extra weekend to recover is not a bad thing.

Apart from that, I’m still not using the pain-killing patches. When I saw him on Wednesday the oncologist described this as “muy valiente” which I think translates as “bloody stupid”. The radiotherapy doctor, on the other hand, said she thought it was a good idea to avoid the patches and their side-effects if I could. Hmm. There could be a gender difference here in attitudes to pain.

It is getting increasingly difficult not to count the hours before this painful exile is over. Although I won’t be able to rush out and play even when I get back to Ibiza. The oncologist said it would take three to four months to recover from the radiotherapy. Of course that doesn’t include the effects of the surgery. Hopefully my voice will come back fairly quickly and the persistent wet cough – the least unpleasant way I can describe it – will disappear equally fast. Learning to eat and drink again will take a little longer. With a bit of luck, though, I’ll be able to get out and about a bit by September. (And, frankly, I’m happy not to have to go anywhere in Ibiza’s August. Worst month of the year.)

I also hope to start writing again in September. I got a nice note from my former boss at the Wall Street Journal telling me there’d be work available when I’m ready. I’ll also finally get on with writing the novel. All I need to do is get through these last five sessions of radiotherapy.

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