Three years clear!

22239_245584604708_511244708_3137715_6127093_nThis is always a difficult time of year for me. Firstly, 7 December is our daughter Louise’s birthday. She would have been 27 last week, but instead she is forever a glorious 21 – young and beautiful. We celebrated her life with some close friends at the Bench last week and later in the Steele’s where we held her wake.


At the Bench


It was three years ago, the day before Louise’s birthday, that I had my soft tissue sarcoma removed. I was lucky to survive that operation with my leg and life intact, and since then we have been counting the years of recovery. My surgeon says ‘Three years, small party; five years big party; ten years gigantic party’. If I get to the ten years then I can breathe a huge sigh of relief. Until then the six-monthly tests continue.


This time the run-up to the tests have been more stressful than usual as I lost my health insurance when we returned to London. I thought it would be easy to get a transfer to the NHS. How wrong I was. I battled with my GP and Camden for 3 months, but luckily my lovely radiologist Dr Miah from the Royal Marsden Sarcoma Unit managed to effect the transfer from her end. I had to provide three proofs of address as well as a passport – so to all you who complain about NHS tourists, all I can say is they are most rigorous!

So it was that yesterday I returned to the Marsden where I had my radiotherapy and was greeted by an all enveloping hug by the diminutive Dr Miah. I was seen and x-rayed and given the all clear all within an hour. That is until the next tests.


Orchids at the Flower Dome in Singapore

But until then I will continue to follow my recipe for life – healthy eating (no dairy or red meat), yoga and Pilates 3-4 times per week, the lingzhi tablets now supplemented with some essential oil drops and, yes, some moderate drinking, all combined with a good dollop of hopeful activities – travelling and writing. So merry Christmas dear followers, and let’s hope 2017 is another healthy year for all of us. Carpe Diem!


Louise touches lives even after her death – these Big Issue sellers decorated the Bench with tinsel and left this note

Here is a link to Little London Lou – listen and dance. ‘You were sunshine’


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