Hello everyone

Hello everyone

Hi there ovacome pals,

I'm sorry I haven't been around much for a while. I have had a busy, sad and traumatic couple of months.

Since my 50th bithday party when I was on such a high things went down hill fast. Firstly my wonderful mother in law had a stroke and even though the hospital said at first it wasn't life threatening within a week she passed away. Our whole family were in shock and my youngest son took it really badly.

Then 5 days after her passing our beloved dog Oscar's back legs became paralysed. I rushed him to the vet and then to a specialist who operated that day. He came through the operation but one of the disc's in his back had ruptured causing damage to his spinal cord. It was touch and go whether he would make it and sadly 3 days after that i sat with him while he was put to sleep. He was only 4 years old.

I have never been in such an awful place as I was dealing with this grief. I had to be there for my husband, my two sons and deal with my own grief. It was the darkest time of my life maybe even worse than being diagnosed with OC. I spent days crying in between working as a childminder and trying to raise my sons spirits.

The week after this we attended my mother in laws funeral which was tough not only because of the grief of losing her and also my dog but the reality that all these people will be at my funeral including my georgeous boys trying to be brave and deal with their grief. It may not be for a few years but being terminally ill brings the reality of it home to you at such events.

Our summer holiday itiniary went totally wrong but I still managed to get to london for a week sight seeing with the boys and we attended the paralympics and saw some incredible athletes.

Just before the boys went back to school I saw my oncologist who said my cancer has spread through my lymph nodes from my neck on both sides down behind my lungs and to my lower abdomen. Still contained in my lymphatic system and not affecting any major organs as yet so that is good. Also my ca 125 has only risen by 80 to 575 since March (I thought it was going to be up to over 1,000 by now) so mixed results.

I start Topetecan on 1st October so fingers crossed with that. I will then have other options after that and he said caelyx should be available again from next year.

Next week I am having another port a cath put in so fingers crossed it doesn't all go wrong again.

Anyway on a brighter note the picture above is of my new beagle puppy, Alfie. He is 11 weeks old and full of fun and mischief. My husband brought him for me to help me get over Oscar. Lovely thought but I will never get over Oscar as he was such a special dog and we had such a close bond but I am sure with time Alfie and I will get a close bond as well. He is very cute and cuddly!

I am also going to drive a hovercraft with my husband next week just before starting treatment again so that should be fun. Hopefully I am coming back from that dark place and my fighting spirit will keep me going and dealing with whatever is thrown

I have so many plans for the coming weeks I hope I tolerate Topetecan as well as I have the other chemos and can continue working throughout with my childminding. Plus I will need my energy to train my puppy.

love and hugs to you all Jackie xxxxx

27 Replies

  • Hi Jackie,

    Thank you for this very hard blog to write...we are here for you...when you hit rock bottom there is only one way to go and that's up...so keep climbing....Alfie is so cute we love him already...and I know you do...even though I think you have a hard task with his mischievous nature...I am sure he is just what the doctor has ordered..lots of love x G x :-)

  • Hi Jackie,

    Could I ask you to tag your pic under "pets" so it will be easier to find later love x G x I say pets so others might have different pets to show :-)

  • So sorry you've been through such a rough time. Enjoy driving that hovercraft - what will you think of next!


  • Thanks Monique,

    I'm always open for new ideas for my next adventures. I will let you all know how the hovercraft thing goes

    Hugs Jackie xxxx

  • Dear Jackie

    Your post really said it all. It was written with such honesty and clarity that I felt I shared all those ups and downs with you. Such is the journey we're all on.

    I'm sending you a big hug for all the terrible things that have happened in the last few months. Your family and friends, and that fab little Alphie, will get you through this and we're all here for you too.

    It didn't surprise me that you ended up on a brighter note. Driving a hovercraft! Please let us know how that goes and how you get on with Topetecan.

    Sending loads of love xxx Annie

  • Thank you Annie,

    I will definately let you know how the hovercraft driving goes.

    Hugs Jackie xxx

  • Dear Jackie,

    It's so difficult to imagine that one person would have to face so many adversities in such a short space of time. It's little wonder you are feeling sad and despondent. How lucky you are to have a lovely husband who cares for you so much he bought you a puppy to help take your mind off the sadness.

    I think it helps to share your feelings with everyone here - there's many shoulders for you to cry on and help you feel better. Your boys sound lovely and they have obviously suffered the storms with you and your husband.

    I hope the port installation goes without a hitch and that the Topotecan will work miracles on eliminating the cancer. Sending teal hugs and warm thoughts to you ...


  • Thank you sandy,

    It is true that there are several shoulders to cry on here which helps greatly. My boys are fantastic and so brave but I just feel life is so unfair for them at the moment. Such grief over the holidays and constantly dealing with the uncertainty of my future.

    Alfie is helping and stressing me all at the same time but he is cute and fun to have around.

    Hugs Jackie xx

  • The grief of losing a pet is terrible. My thoughts are with you. I've heard that cancer in the lymph nodes isn't as bad as cancer elsewhere. I hope this is true for you.

  • I hope you are right about the lymph nodes. I always worry that in the lymph nodes it can spread easier all over the body.

    It is slow growing though which is good though.

    Hugs Jackie xx

  • Hello Jackie,

    Just want to send you all my sympathy for the rotten time you've been having lately. I've so admired your attitude with the super positive things you do with your family. You've had a dreadful time but I dohope you're coming out the other side now. I'm sure the boys spirits will be immensely lifted with your adorable new pup - and yours too. I hope he soon settles down and fits in with the family beautifully. What a super thing your husband did!! I expect you may have a few moments, when you're really tired, you may think "What have we done", when Alfie is being particularly mischievous and boisterous - but he'll bring so many smiles, as well.

    I feel for you with the spread of this horrible cancer to those Lymph nodes as I have the same thing. Good Luck with your next lot of treatment. I'll be thinking of you. Keep your chin up,

    With love, Solange

  • Thanks Solange,

    I'm sure things can only get better now at least for a while. I've had my share of rotten stuff for this year time for more fun.

    Good luck to you as well

    Hugs Jackie xx

  • Hello Jackie

    I just replied to you on Gwyn's poem then found this. I'm so sorry you've had such an awful time over the summer. Sometimes it's beyond belief what the human spirit has to endure, and I so feel for you. I agree with Annie you have put it in such a way I feel I've lived it with you.

    Your profile picture is lovely, you look so well and your boys look gorgeous, as for that puppy....well.....just adorable!

    We have to all take comfort in what we have and the things that bring us joy, and knowing you have the support of everyone on here.

    Enjoy your weekend.

    Love Linda xx

  • Hi Linda,

    Thanks for your message. I do take a lot of comfort knowing I have my virtual friends here for me when I need them. Alfie is both frustrating and cute all rolled into one.

    Hugs Jackie xx

  • What a lovely Beagle my daughter has just got one he is gorgeous to, they do help with stress ,I have a springer spanniel who i adore and needs lots of excercise which gets me out, So sorry to hear of your losses, life so cruel sometimes, when I lost my labrador like you was put to sleep in my arms,broke my heart. he was part of our family and I felt as upset as when I lost my darling Mum who I loved dearly people who dont have pets will never understand the love and devotion a dog gives, do hope all goes well with your treatment take care love Jennyxx

  • Thanks jenny,

    I agree with you that non doggy people just don't understand about losing what is essentially your best friend. I hope I get a close relationship with Alfie but I don't think it will ever be the same as I had with Oscar (who was a sprocker spaniel).

    Hugs Jackie xxx

  • I thought i would not love poppy like my labrador, wow i was so wrong she found her way into our hearts,and is so bright, did take a couple of months to feel the same so now shes the best ever bitch and arny the best ever dog. take care Jenny xx

  • Hi Jackie

    Loving hugs to you, what a time youy have had. Hope that sharing this episode with us has helped you a bit.

    What a beautiful puppy Alfie is. The week i was diagnosed with OV My beautiful redheaded daughter arrived!!!!! The sweetest cocker spaniel ( we don't do girls in our family this is the nearest I get!!)She has been a source of such love,comfort and joy to the whole family and many more. Like you I thought I would never love a dog like my beloved 17 year old springer, but they have their ways of making you forget your hurts even if just for a while.

    You have inspired me to look at the hovercraft idea. I think my wonderful husband deserves a treat for putting up with me during my carboplatin mood swings( never had them with carbo or any other chemo before). So thankyou

    Best wishes for health and happiness to come your way


  • Thanks sue,

    I love cocker spaniels. My dog Oscar was a sprocker spaniel. I decided I didn't want another spaniel when he died as I would compare them too much and that wouldn't have been fair.

    The hovercraft driving looks great fun I can't wait. I'll let you know how it goes.

    Hugs Jackie xx

  • Hi Jackie,

    So sorry you have had such a rough time with everything.

    But look what has come into your life now, he is lovely, and will bring the smiles back to all your faces and lots of love as well.

    Thinking of you.

    luv trish x x

  • Hi trish,

    thanks for your message. I'm sure Alfie will cheer us all up but no doubt stress us out a little too but look at those eyes - you can't be angry for long if at all!!

    Hugs Jackie xx

  • hello Jackie.

    So sorry for you loss.. I hope you do find your fighting spirit soon.. I hope you enjoy your hover craft trip too that sounds like great fun.. You are in my thoughts and my prayers..

    lots of love

    suzanne.. xxxx

  • Thanks Suzanne,

    Fighting spirit definately on way back. I want to take my sons to Disneyland Paris next year and so much other stuff to do so lots to keep strong for. Also I need to train my little Alfie to be a lovely obedient dog!

    Hugs Jackie xxx

  • Dear Jackie

    I am so sorry to hear of all that you have been through. You have definitely been very brave & I am sure your fighting spirit will help you move forward. Life does throw us some exceptionally hard challenges & somehow the human spirit seems to know how to overcome these challenges. I am sure you must have witnessed this when you watched the paralympics.

    I pray that you get through the next course of treatment well & you can make the most of each day & enjoy Alfie.

    You are truly inspirational!!

    Lots of love, Samixa X :-)

  • Thank you Samixa,

    Yes we saw so many inspirational athletes at the Paralympics. One guy amazed,e at the swimming. He walked up to the end of the pool and took off his track suit. He then took off his left arm and both his legs and put them with his clothes. He then manovered himself to the pool and took part in his race where he came third. A colleague of his brought his clothes and limbs to the other end of the pool so he could "assemble" himself again!


    Hugs Jackie xxx

  • Hi jackie.

    Im dorry for the loss of ur dog...they r part of the family ...we lost our springer last year... She was a fantastic little dog...and just recently we adopted a little cocker spaniel ...called libby. See the brill poem.. Gwen wrote abt her...she took a liitle while to get used to us.. But she is just a liitle star...and i cant imagine life without her...good luck wid puppy training... It will all be worth it.

    Luv shenxx

  • Hi Shen,

    Cocker spaniels are popular on here. Soapsuds has one as well. I do love spaniels. Oscar was a sprocker spaniel. He was so loving and used to wag his whole back end when he was happy to see you.

    I start puppy classes the week after I start chemo again so fingers crossed I cope alright with topetecan.

    Hugs Jackie xxx

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