I apologise for the delay in blogging the past few weeks. I have been keeping a low profile, adjusting to the new schedule but above all I have been busy living my life as.. wait for it.. normal! I have actually had more of a social life the past month than I have ever had in the past twenty five years. I have begun my second round and if the first round is anything to go by I must prepare…. for absolutely nothing in my life to change.
I had my first session on Thursday 7th July 2016. I wasn’t sure what to expect; I held my breath, closed one eye and waited for the impact of the drugs to hit my system. Sitting back on a recliner chair, fluffy blankie keeping me warm, a sister/ friend/ mammy as my personal slave, I waited and waited but… nothing. The couple of hours came and went. The nurse actually had to tell me I was finished, more enthralled in the newest episode of Suits rather than the time I could leave (usually I am trying to bargain with the doctors to leave early). I jumped out of the seat, felt like doing a couple of cartwheels just because I could do so. It’s crazy how the little things in your life can change; I was happy I could stand up without help, but I’ll take the little things. I rested Thursday evening, but more out of obligation to the Momma Bear than actual necessity. That weekend I went to Kodaline AND Beyoncé. Two amazing concerts where I stood and danced for hours with the other thousands of eager fans, I had the time of my life. One might say I slayed the first round (leaves room immediately). So like the 38000 at Kodaline and 80000 at Beyoncé I put all my problems aside and had an amazing time with a great bunch of family and friends. Perhaps the next day my motor functions dwindled a little, but sure that’s like half the country on a Sunday morning.
The following Thursday was my second round. Feeling little side effects since the last I felt a little surer of myself with this one. A couple hours of my life were spent; I was hooked up, I was unhooked, I ran out of the place as quick as I could. The next day we took a trip down to Kerry. I always yearn to go to beautiful foreign places but I constantly forget the little gems we own here in Ireland. I had never been to Kerry so that was on the bucket list for the weekend. We stayed in a beautiful lodge 5 miles outside of Tralee. Situated in such a peaceful serene area, Gortbrack Organic Farm was the absolute perfect getaway from traffic, people in general, needles, pitiful stares etc. The lodge had no T.V and a wood stove blazing on arrival, throwing out heat with its raging flames. Saturday was spent exploring the beautiful scenery; Dingle, Slea Head, Ladies View, Conor Pass just to mention a couple. A trip to Tralee’s Quinalan’s Chipper was a must for the famous fish and chip. Waking up to silence and not the N7 traffic was pure bliss, followed by a morning exploring the farm which grows its own organic vegetables and herbs. We got hours of fun out of the three playful sheep doggies. So that was the second weekend after my treatment, things were just getting worse.
The final bout of my first round came the day before I went to Copenhagan and Sweden for ten days. I was unhooked from the chemo at 5.30pm on Thursday, went home, had a rest, tried to sleep but was hard because I was so excited and then the next day my buddie Luke collected me and the adventure we had all been waiting for finally began. I was so lucky to be heading off on my favourite holiday of the year with my best buds Luke and Danny. We spent two days in Copenhagan and explored the city by cycling. What a pleasure to feel the wind blowing those two inches of hair in a different country two days after my treatment.
On Monday we began the real adventure; Emmabodafestivalen, my yearly escape from adulting at a six night festival brimming with crazy music, amazing friends, amazing Swedes, amazing weather, should I go on? I had the pleasure of completing my Bachelor’s thesis in Sweden and I was so lucky to meet great friends that brought me along to this random festival in a wood in the middle of Sweden. Needless to say I was hooked the minute I entered the mini heaven. Four years later it is a tradition, with the brilliant additions of Danny and Luke. So sleeping in a tent for six nights (actually so comfy with my blow up bed and blankie. Every story involves having a blankie), dancing, laughing, slagging; pure bliss. I forgot about any anxiety or worries that may simmer under the surface and I embraced every moment. I could have easily felt sorry for myself, thought about it constantly and let the fear take over. I could have been so afraid of not living that I forgot to live. I didn’t, I let nothing get in my way and enjoyed it so much. An inspirational paragraph about living life to the max because things could change in a second comes to mind here, but the place will reek of cheese, so instead I’ll keep it short and say; Stop waiting and just live.