Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Thank You............

.................for all your thoughts and prayers, much appreciated, let's hope they work.

 I've got over  the reality shock  so we've just been carrying on, one day at a time, keeping busy, although because of the speed that his white blood cell count is increasing Col is running out of energy, even with the steroids.  Someone asked if this really was the only 'choice'  and yes it is at the moment because all the things tried so far haven't worked. His only other option would be bigger doses of one of the chemo drugs tried last year,which didn't work then and neither he nor the consultant want to do that.
 The new drug he will be taking is called Venetoclax, it's been used mostly in the US and very successfully against CLL Lymphoma and also tried on Mantle Cell Lymphoma, which is what Col has. Only a handful of people in this country are taking it.
If it works and when the white blood cell count is low enough he will have a donor stem cell transplant from a sibling.
He'll get a phone call later today to say what time they want him in. The first thing they do is to give lots of fluids for 24 hours before starting the tablets. He might have to go in each time the dosage is increased, it depends what reaction he has. The big risk is Tumour Lysis Syndrome this is when large amounts of the cancerous cells are killed releasing uric acid, potassium and phosphorous into the bloodstream too quickly. This is why they now start on a very small dose and increase it week by week.
The consultant said he was very excited about being able to trial these new tablets, we said excited wasn't the word we would use!

Anyway,  we've trying to keep things as normal as possible which meant going to a car boot sale on Saturday afternoon at the Leisure Centre in our nearest big village. I was very pleased with this little grandchild sized chair for £3 and the box of Brio type railway for £5.
 Then Sunday we went for Mother's Day lunch at our son and daughter in law's home - lovely roast lamb - he's a very good cook.
On Monday we went to visit our youngest daughter and little Florence. We took  a Jumparoo which I won off ebay for her ( I hadn't heard of them until Eldest daughter told us about the one she borrowed for Jacob). She thought it was great fun and was soon worn out from all the bouncing.

After visiting A and Florence it was up to hospital so Colin could have the picc line put in, this is the way they can give antibiotics intravenously and take numerous blood tests while he is being closely monitored at the start of the drug..

Keeping busy has involved more garden clearing, I've finished forking and weeding my way across  veg. bed # 1, a little at a time as I'm so out of gardening practice.  We've sown lettuce and beetroot seeds in Veg bed#3 and planted the potatoes in bed #4, leaving space for 2 tripods of beans. Veg bed # 2 is still full of weeds, that's my next job. With much less space than at the smallholding we have to decide what's best to grow both from the freshness and expense point of view.
The soft fruit bed is cleared and ready and waiting for the arrival of two gooseberry bushes and I decided to use part of it for asparagus too. My cucumber, tomato, pepper, aubergine and basil seedlings have been pricked out into bigger pots - in the conservatory during the day and indoors at night. There's no sign of leek seedlings and very few lettuce seedlings coming up in the greenhouse. May have to try a different packet of leek seeds.

Latest reading was Problem at Pollensa Bay, a collection of Agatha Christie short stories with some characters I'd never heard of before- Harley Quin and Parker Pyne. Looking through the lists at the back of the book there seem to be quite a lot of short stories and collections that have been republished very recently.
Followed by a brilliant book by Rory Clements called Corpus...........this is what The Fantastic Fiction website says about it............
book cover of 


1936. Europe is in turmoil. The Nazis have marched into the Rhineland. In Russia, Stalin has unleashed his Great Terror. Spain has erupted in civil war.

In Berlin, a young Englishwoman evades the Gestapo to deliver vital papers to a Jewish scientist. Within weeks, she is found dead, a silver syringe clutched in her fingers.

In an exclusive London club, a conspiracy is launched that threatens the very heart of government. When a renowned society couple with fascist leanings are found brutally murdered, a maverick Cambridge professor is drawn into a world of espionage he knows only from history books. The deeper Thomas Wilde delves, the more he finds to link the murders with the girl with the silver syringe - and even more worryingly to the scandal surrounding the Abdication .

A very well written and gripping novel, which I really enjoyed. It says in the back that he is writing another featuring the same character. I've now run out of library books so have started The Winter is Past by Noel Streatfield which is one I bought from Grey Ladies Publishing last year.

Onward and onward we go, I'll keep blogging as it's another way of keeping busy.

Back Soon


  1. It is a very worrying time, good to keep busy which you have been doing.

    1. There is plenty to keep busy with here which is good

  2. Oh yes, I like the sound of that book shall have to see if the library has it, it sounds right up my street.
    The brio was an absolute bargain, its so expensive new. We went car booting on Sunday but didn't find much, it goes like that sometimes, roll on Sunday lol
    As I said before my friend has the stem cell and it worked for her, all fingers crossed that everything turns out fine.

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    2. Cols own stem cell transplant didn't work so they hope to try donor. The book was really good better than his previous series I thought

  3. I am keeping my fingers crossed that this new drug works. My thoughts are with you.

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    2. Thank you - (I put the wrong reply on the wrong comments - hence all the deletes!)

  4. It's such a shame that drugs that are supposed to help sometimes have such horrendous side effects, which themselves have to be treated, or it's necessary to take more drugs to counteract the side effects. I hope it works for Col with as few side effects as possible.

  5. I am hoping and praying that the new treatment will work. Best wishes to you both.

  6. You will be in my heart and thoughts as you and Col go through what is to come and I am wishing so, so hard for everything to go well.

    I wish Marlowe was still small enough to use her Jumperoo. I have never laughed so much as when we used to see her in it. All we needed was some Irish music and she would have been a shoo-in for Riverdance....hilarious.

    Loving reading about what you are up to in the garden. I missed that while you were at the bungalow.
    Hugs to you both-x-

    1. Florence can just touch the floor with her tippy toes so it should last her a while, she was so smiley and loved it - a joy to see.

  7. My thoughts are still with you, Sue. Onwards and upwards, or as Churchill said, "KBO!" Keep B*ggering On!
    Margaret P

  8. Fingers crossed and positive thoughts

  9. My fingers are crossed too, that it all goes well, but it does sound like the Consultant is feeling upbeat and positive about it, although Col must still feel rather guinea-piggish about the treatment!

    When he is up to it, I recommend Banana-Applesauce cake, still warm from the oven, with ice cream. I've just got outside of a bowl of it and it was DIVINE! I'll put the recipe up for you this week.

  10. Very best wishes to you and Col.

  11. Prayers and healing thoughts still be sent your way.

    Oh that child's chair is so cute!

    God bless.

  12. Sending good wishes to you both and positive thoughts that the new drugs will work for Col. What a lovely chair for a grandchild and glad you both could enjoy visits with your family. It's lovely to hear about your garden and it must be something nice to talk about, looking forward to harvesting fruit and veggies. :)

  13. Still rooting for you both, and watching and waiting to see how things go. And, as ever, sending big hugs.
    You are really keeping busy with the planting. We do lose muscle power when we have a break from what were routine activities.
    I like the sound of that book- will look out for it.
    I have just come in from a pleasant evening - Susan Hill at our local Waterstones, talking about her new book. She writes so many books, in so many genres.
    I can't remember if you read her Simon Serrailler series of crime novels, but I love those - about to read the 7th, A Question of Identity. Ordered from the library.
    Using the library to death at the moment, as it is threatened with drastic downsizing. If we all came away with armfuls like you do Sue that might tell the council something!
    Love to you both. xx

  14. Thinking of you both and sincerely hoping the treatment works. Your garden sounds has thou it will have a bountiful crop thus summer. Good buys from the car boots. I love reading also and support our libraries.
    Take care of yourself Sue .
    Tender hugs Hazel c uk