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Cohen Sandy

Cohen Sandy

I have a bad needle phobia. I have had breast cancer and a scare with bowel cancer. I have had chemotherapy. I am getting over all these to work toward work. I still need blood tests and all so need to work on my phobia some more. I went to see a psych about it and ended up worse. Now I am depressed about it all. I am depressed that I can't find work. I am depressed cos I spend all my waking hours inside at the computer, or read.
Monday, 30 September 2013 04:44

Every day a new post

After having gone through surgery and then chemotherapy, I felt pretty flat at the end of it all. It was November and my hair was just a little layer of soft fluff on my head. We in the chemo circles call this "bum fluiff" So I was still wearing a bandana or scarfe...I also occasionally went to the extent of wearing the wig..

So here I am feeling hot and bothered..the weather in Oz was warming up a treat and we were in for a right hot summer in 2011. I perservered with my head this way, trying not to scratch, but using lots and lots of sorbeline in an effort to stop the eternal itch from coming in. 

December came and went and with it Christmas. I was glad of being still alive, but..didn't like the hot flushes I was getting, courtesy of the chemo....

Then January began and I was determined to be more positive. But how? What could I do to prove that I was turning over a new leaf? How could I look after myself any better so I would ne happy and gay and not sulky and begin to think the world owed me a favour just because of my bad luck.

Well, I looked at my facebook page and then it hit me - I will post a positive thought every day from here on ie. And that is exactly what I did. Sometimes it was short and sweet, other times it was long and newsy, then other times it was positive and inspirational. Every day was a real challenge cos I didn't really feel positive, or inspirational or like talking. BUT I had promised this to myself and I hate to break my promises, much less my new years' resoluion. I kept it up for months and months..

Summer came and went, autumn, then winter. I started getting colds and flus and was struck to bed with these awful lurgies until it all passed. Two weeks at a time was not very niice. This was also the year I got to experience another cancer fear - bowel cancer. By the time that was over - from January to September...it took them three goes to get it out and months to check it out and find out finally that it was BENIGN! I was elated. Flat, though elated!

I started to miss a day or two...I had people commenting on my page to ask if I was ok? Then I had oithers messaging me to ask the same. Still, others emailed. Where ever I went and people recognised me, they said "I read your facebook posts" I was amazed at how many people came to rely on reading my posts AND liking them too! From me, I was just another poster..talking about my life on a daily basis. Sometimes my dogs, sometimes my partner, other times, my tirals and tribulations or how I felt. Though I always tried to be positive.

So I started to realise just how many people relied on me. It was great to have such a following. I still try to on a weekly basis to put something positive in. However I have hit a slump in my path right now, so I must rely on reading other's posts.
I hope that you all have a really great day and that you also have a really terrific week.

Bright blessings

Thursday, 26 September 2013 07:07

Needle Phobia creates its challenges

I have needle phobia. It is not very strong, though it is there and to the point (arrgggg, sorry for the pun) though that I will argue with the person who wants to give or extract anything to/from me in any way as a needle. If it has a sharp point on it, then it doesn't come near me. 

During my time in hospital from my surgery, every day the vampires would come seeking a pint of my blood. Of course it may not have been a whole pint, though it certainly always looked like it was THAT much! When they would come to my bed I would spend the  next 10 minutes arguing with the poor nurse (sometimes male, sometimes female) about my needing a blood test today. I asked why, he/she said the doctor wants it, I said cut the crap, you know you want it...of course that didn't come right out aloud, it was the voice in my head that said that. I looked at him/her and continued to argue until finally I said "well, yes, okay...if you insist" Then it had to be in my left arm cos my right arm isn't allowed to have needles or blood pressure anymore on account of my lymph nodes being taken out as well. So that when they put the needle in it hurt like crazy cos there had been one the previous day!

So this kind of thing just went on and on and on. Each time I go to hospital for something or other, they want to put a canula in my left hand and I keep telling them "NO" They say "YES!" and then the charade continues. When they ask why I tell them I have needle phobia and that I'm likely to faint or something worse. I don't know what... just know that something worse can happen. Well, those doctors and nurses in there are quite adamant about me having a canula in my hand so eventually it goes in. Last time it happened was - on my birthday this year! I said No, the doctor said Yes and finally he managed to put it in. I was just feeling proud of myself when he had finished it and I could look around again, and that's when it happened!

Oh, oh, I said...I looked at the doctor and said I'm gonna be sick! Quick Get something! 

Sometimes I think those doctors react in slow motion, cos this time he said (rather conversationally) I don't have a vomit bag, hang on and I'll get one...as he finished off what he was doing. I started to panic cos I could tell something was coming up that I didn't want to come out. I saw a bin just a few metres away and said to my partner, quick, get that bin over here! Demanding that I was, then I said...oh oh,,.I'm gonna faint.

(As I am typing this, I am giggling cos now it is funny to look back, although it was far from funny at the time)

Then he says to me "Well, you can't do both, so  make up your mind!" That was the last thing I heard being said. I woke up a few minutes later to the doctor and a nurse calling my name. Didn't they know that I knew my name. They asked me silly questions like what is your name....do you know where you are?...do you know what you're here for? Of course I know where I am and who I am and I just thought I'd give myself a new Harry Potter scar this evening when I head butted the barbeque just for fun! DAAaaa!!!

So they put this canula in cos they think I may need some antibiotics or something for the big gash in the side of my temple that has blood coming out of it. Well, they didn't need the antibiotics, instead they put some saline in. Then they told me they needed a blood test from me and it was to come out of my arm! I said "You've got to be flamin' kidding me!!! :(  (I am very good, I don't swear these days) I demanded they take it out of my canula and they said they couldn't cos they were giving me some saline by now, so I had to go through all that again. This time it wasn't too bad cos the needle was finer.

After a few hours the doctor came and told me I would need stitches...again - the argument begain with No - Yes - No - YES! He won! I don't get it - how is it that they always win!

Well, he got everything ready and was about to start when I warned him I was going to be sick again. He just looks at me with his big brown eyes and I saw a slight roll...ever so slight...it was weird. As though he was thinking "here we go again" Then I said "I'm gona faint" and again my partner says "make up  your mind, you can't do both!" (another funny moment, eh?) So the doc says to me - would you like something to take for the nausea! I looked at him like he was some mad comedian! OF COURSE I'D LIKE SOMETHING FOR THE NAUSEA! shouted the voice in my head! I was mad by this time. The nurse was taking my blood pressure and noticed my heart rate climbing steadily. They gave me something for the nausea and then continued with the stitches. Telling me that the needle for the anaesthetic would hurt more than the needle for the stitches did nothing to help my tummy relax. My partner alongside of me is telling me to breathe! breathe! breathe! I AM BREATHING!!! again the voice is so loud in my head, my ears were ringing.

So eventually the doctor finishes my stitches and tells me to relax and lie back and sleep a little while until the tests come back for my blood test. By the time the tests were back I had been in there 8 hours and finally was relieved to be going home. My partner makes some funny ha ha, very tongue in cheek comment about the hospital being my second home and am I sure I want to leave? YES! I'M BLOOMIN' CERTAIN I WANT TO LEAVE! I HATE NEEDLES! I yelloed out aloud this time so he could hear it.

Yes, I hate needles and never want to have another one so long as I shall ever live....then I know there are more hospital visits in the future....just for tests mind you...but still more needles

Thursday, 26 September 2013 05:00

Coming home from hospital

Well, here goes - my first diary post.

I have always been a quiet person. Very private and very shy toward other people. When I was growing up, I had issues with my friends all because as my father so befittingly pointed out - I was acting the way I thought they wanted me to act. How observant he was then..and still is today. Now he tells me that I could not cope without a dog in the house-hold. Again he is not only observant, yet accurate to boot.

My two dogs greeted me the day I came home from having breast surgery for breast cancer. I had a drain hanging out of my right side and we took all precautions so that I would not have any accidents with it. That I would get into the house without them pushing me down like Dino did to Fred Flintsone! It was a good challenge and we actually made it into the house, then into the loungeroom and onto the lounge. "Phew" I said "that was a blessing" then the phone rang..

It was my birthday you see, and I had been allowed home with one drain. I was told that the Home-Care nurses would visit me on daily basis to check the drain and ensure everything was fine. When the phone rang I expected it to be my mother. It wasn't it was a friend who rang me to wish me happy birthday. He then went into length about how he was so proud he remembered it was my birthday. So I felt fine..still listening to him and then heard him say he might need to look for a second job..

I foolishly, though not without compassion, asked him why. This was a mistake. He spent the next 20 minutes telling me how broke he was, how there were two invilids at home and how hard it was to find work these days. Well, I wondered - how interesting all this was, yet inside my head a voice could be heard to yell very loudly "HEY! I THOUGHT YOUR PHONED ME TO WISH ME HAPPY BIRTHDAY!" You see, the conversation seemed to be all about  him. He was sad. He was depressed. He was lonely. He was having a hard job of coping with life.

I couldn't get a word in edge wise and when I did, I tried to sound posive. Isn't this, after all, the way one should be with friends. Forget that it was my birthday. Forget that I had just had major surgery to remove my breast - a part of my body that I was kind of attached to, having been together for the better part of 50 plus years..albeit in my young youth I wasn't really aware what it would be like to have them swollen and looking beautiful as they became.. Forget that I still had a drain inside my chest and that I needed help to dress and undress, as well as to shower. Forget that it would take me weeks, months even before I would feel confident in driving any distance at all...

No, the conversation was all about him. It was all about him not being able to go on holidays (I had wondered what holidays were for a long while now that we had two dogs and realised how expensive it was to board them). It was all about him not being able to take the weekend off and go for a drive in his you beaut new 4WD. It was all about him.....

Finally the conversation came to a slow drawl and I took the opportunity to say "well, thanks friend for ringing me and...oh yes, wishing me happy birthday...I think I hear someone calling me.." then I put the receiver down. I looked up at my parther and almost burst into tears. I would have too, if not for my beautiful and wonderfully spoilt two dogs we so quaintly refer to as "the kids" or what I refer to as "the monsters". They both jumped up on the lounge and jumped all over me. I flew caution to the wind and opened my arms to hug them both having them lick my face as though it were smeared with chocolate or something. 

Then I knew - I was home! Home to two four legged people who loved me for me. Home to my partner who went through everything with me. Now I could cry with joy in my heart. Joy and Relief.

Surely, life could only improve from here on in.

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