Moving fast

I went to see the oncologist today and was surprised to hear “your radiation starts now” wholy-moly-smileyhoopee – miscommunication.  I was hauled off to the radiation room.  I will receive 5 radiation sessions, one a day, for a week until Monday 24th. Radiation is no big deal, it’s not painful at all, best to just relax and get in an extra nap while you’re there. (I have no idea what they do with people suffering from claustrophobia.) They did some X-rays first to make sure the scan is 100% in the correct position and the whole process took about 30 minutes all in all.  I will be scanned again after 2-3 months to see what the effect has been from the radiation.

I’m so glad that I can start weaning off the cortisone from Monday 24th but it will be a
long process over 5 weeks at which point I need to contact the doctor to michelin_bikinireport on my progress.  If I’m okay there will be a further reduction period.  Making progress. I’m so bloated from water retention, that’s the worst side effect – I have a double chin, my feet and fingers hurt… long term cortisone is not easy.

At this point the tumour is still there, it has not reduced. What happened originally was that the tumour was ‘leaching’, known as a ‘brain oedema’, and the cortisone has helped to dry it up which is why I’ve been feeling better. When I heard that the tumour is “as big as an eye” – I said I would have preferred a pea!  I never asked what part of the eye….

hairlossI may have patchy hair on the left hand side where I was radiated. Disappointing as my hair was coming along nicely for summer but a small thing, hardly worth complaining in the bigger scheme of things.


My hair, my weight, my scans…


Here are some photos of my new hair (my head was shaven.) It’s still a bit batchy and I’m not sure of the colour or the effect of the scheduled radiation so I’m going to wait and see first before doing anything for summer.  But all I know is that any form of head covering is extremely hot even now and it’s not even summer!


I went to my Integrated Health Specialist on Monday 10 October and guess what – I gained 7 kg in a month from the cortisone!  He said not to worry about it too much because I’m retaining a lot of fluid from the cortisone.  I feel like an Oros man – swollen face, stomach, fingers and legs. There are other symptoms as well like redness in the face. I guess I’ll have to continue with the cortisone until we know the effect of the radiation (which is still to come.)

N1 City

My 11 October started off with an MRI scan at 08h00.


The MRI scan was incredible noisy.  I usually imagine myself on the beach but this was impossible.  It reminded me of sitting on the side of the road at Dimitri’s in RSE, waiting for my car to be fixed!  Clanging, grinding and banging.  That was the only image that crossed my mind.

I was then taken to have a mask made.  They shaped hot melted plastic around my face which cooled into a hard, unbending mask.  It was wonderful because it felt just like a facial, except the smell of chocolate was absent!

Thereafter, time for the CT scan, where I had dye injected into my arm. No big deal but I have to drink about 2 litres of water today to flush out all the chemicals.


And by 9.30am I was done.  The one thing that kept me going was my reward – was I going to order a img_0335-largecappucino or chocochino!

I’m meeting the oncologist in a week’s time to hear about next steps.



Fun and games for October ’16

mixed-emotionsI went on a high cortisone dose at my hospital visit on 7 September 2016, whereafter it was gradually reduced, but on 30 September my brain shutting down again, whereafter the dosage was increased.  I am currently (6 October) still on the increased dosage and functioning well.  I am scheduled for radiation and not sure at what stage I’ll be coming off the cortisone.  The bloatedness is already evident in my face and stomach!  Last time it took about 2 months for my body return to normal. My diet can’t cope well with the cortisone cravings….it makes me obsessive compulsive, it’s terrible.  I’ll tackle my summer body when the cortisone is at an end.


On Monday 10 October I need to go for a port flush (that horrible plug in my chest into which they stick a needle to flush it out and to clean it open).  Future chemo will pump into my body through the port that’s why it should be maintained.

In the afternoon I’ll be at N1 City for 2.5 hours where I’ll be getting a mask for the head (to keep the head still & in place so that the radiation is always done in the correct position – the head gets strapped in), a MRT scan and a CT scan.

On 18 October (a week later) I need to meet the oncologist, who will inform me of his decision, based on the above scans. I may need 5 treatments of radiation.

In between (on other days) I need to find time to have my hemoglobin checked with a blood test and another blood test to check my blood level (whether the blood is too thick or too thin and gets chemically adjusted).

I’ll add more photos and results when I know more.  Thank you for your thoughts and good wishes.

Dopey? No way!

While marijuana plants contain high levels of THC, hemp contains very little of the psychoactive chemical. This single difference is what most rely on to distinguish hemp from marijuana. For example, countries like Canada have set the maximum THC content of hemp at 0.3%. Any cannabis with higher THC levels is considered marijuana. Medical marijuana produces anywhere between 5-20% THC on average.

Hemp and marijuana plants contain another important cannabinoid: CBD. Hemp plants produce more CBD than THC, while marijuana produces more THC than CBD. 

Hemp and marijuana are grown for different uses, and therefore require different growing conditions. Achieving maximum THC levels in marijuana is tricky and requires close attention to grow-room conditions. On the other hand, hemp is usually grown outdoors to maximize its size and yield and less attention is paid to individual plants.

In South Africa, Hemp is legal to grow under licence but Marijuana is not. Hemp supplement suppliers are legal and operate on the internet (like

There is a group of cannabis strains collectively called Medical Cannabis. And that’s where the confusion comes in.

Because cannabis is under the radar, the information about it is often contradictory, hazy, word-of-mouth, and one must rely on the internet.

There have been many changes in the illegal world of cannabis oil for the sick worldwide. Behind the scenes in S.A. there are groups working towards legalisation too.

In the meantime there is a list of “approved” suppliers. The “approved suppliers” methods have apparently been inspected to ensure that their bottles/containers show the % of cannabinoids and that the labels contain batch numbers. Those requirements all add to the cost of the product of course, but on the other hand the customer is assured of a quality product.

I have been told that one has to have the oil specially made for your type of illness. Oil for stress may be quite different to that of lung cancer. I’ve been told to take majority CBD with a tinge of THC. (The THC is wonderful before bed for sleeping.)  I have been buying from different suppliers as Medical Cannabis costs much more than Hemp.


15 Months later

As at 15 September 2016.  I had an MRI scan today that showed the following:

All the old tumours have disappeared but a new one (13 mm) started up (somewhere in the region of the left parietal lobe) and that’s what gave me problems last week. I’m on cortisone for 2 months to reduce it (brain is functioning correctly normal now) and the doctor has applied to the Medical Aid for brain radiation which will happen at the N1 City hospital. (They have different radiation machines at different hospitals. I have not been to N1 before.)  The doctor said 2 months’ cortisone will not affect me (e.g. gaining weight before summer!) He found it strange that I woke up like that (suddenly affected by the symptoms), because a brain tumour usually gives advance warning. There is a possibility that something like that could happen again unexpectedly but unlikely. I queried why the symptoms described by Dr Google were so different to mine and he explained that there are many areas of the parietal lobe and that they all respond differently.

(Mouse over the pics to see the captions.)

Left Lung
The original cancer tumour has shrunk further. He doctor said it’s due to chemo & radiation and laughed when I mentioned cannabis. Doctor claims cannabis can help for nausea (during chemo) and pain and that there is no proof of cannabis curing cancer. That is of course the medical view.

Right Lung
There is something but no evidence that it is cancerous. It remains stable and is probably cystic.

The “rotting” spine was caused by the chemotherapy treatment but I received bone strengthening medication intravenously as part of the chemo treatment (in the same drip), there is now evidence that areas of the spine have healed. I have felt pain free for the last couple of days and I was wondering why.

Abdomen All clear.

Afterwards I went to Pathcare to have a blood test to check blood levels. I’m still on Warfarin to prevent blood clots and the blood level has to be checked monthly. So I had two injections in one day! One on one arm (an iodine injection during radiation – awful stuff, makes you burn up from head to toe), the other on the other arm to draw blood.


As I say, one gets used to everything…..

From early morning I kept “seeding” (as per John Kehoe), by saying “My result will be excellent.” And it was. I’m happy. I believe that the power/energy created by the mind influences how the body responds.



Brain Soup


On Wednesday 7 Sept 2016 about 4.30am I woke up totally confused, spoke in bubbles and tried to indicate to mum & sister in house as to my situation and I eventually opened the front door pretty naked to explain my situation. They eventually caught on that this woman is slightly mad!

My sister dressed me (back in pajamas!) and mum and sister took me straight to emergency at Panorama.

They took me to be scanned twice. My daughter Bianca & Nige arrived. I was so glad to see her.  I cannot remember much of the evening. I was informed afterwards. The scan showed a tumour in my left parietal lobe above the ear.

Dr Google describes different symptoms to mine. I up to today (9 Sep.) couldn’t remember the name of the street I live in, or the complex, or to switch on the TV. Battle with writing/typing, comprehending. I still see visions that do not exist, hear voices and have blurred vision. One gets used to everything. In the past, before I got diagnosed, I heard the most unusual music in my head which I quite enjoyed, but unfortunately it didn’t ring any bells – not enough for me to investigate why all of a sudden I’m hearing twiddles.

In hospital they put me on a high dose of cortisone on a drip and I get better every day. I’m still on cortisone for +- 3 weeks (at home) and then a retest. If it has shrunk, they will radiate the spot.


The worst was being in hospital without memory and no phone or laptop, I felt so lost! Eventually on the following day I got permission from the doctor that I could slip out for an hour to go home to pack. One of the nurses accompanied me. I live 10 mins from Panorama and I was much better by then. Every morning in hospital I went walking for 10 – 20 minutes (wearing out their passage!) with nurses running after me to try to stop me but only the last day they realised I can walk.

The previous weekend I went walking for about 30 minutes fast in Boschenmeer – I thought I was doing a roundabout but then I was told “no we must retrace our steps!” I handled it well – no huffing and puffing. I always keep my mouth closed when I walk.

On 15 Sept I’m having further scans – lungs and spine. Not looking forward to drinking two large bottles Barium.  Thereafter seeing Oncologist.  Doing INR on the same day – blood test to check level.  Blood must be at a certain level to prevent blood clots. I’m not phased by these tests anymore, I just take them in my stride and relax. Bit of mind control.



My Mantras, every day, twice a day:
Every day in every way I’m getting better and better.
I’m in perfect healthy.
I’m the miracle, I survived cancer.

The book Mind Power by John Kehoe is really highly recommended.

I will update the blog after my next scan.




Mixed emotions

I had my last chemo session on Friday 22 July.  I was elated and as I was saying goodbye to one of the sisters, she said, ‘No but I’ll see you soon, your port will need to be flushed.’  I looked at the other sister and they both laughed.  I thought they were having me on.  I didn’t know that – no one mentioned it!  And they all know how I hate it when they connect that needle to the port, they have to anesthetise mine for at least 30 – 60 minutes beforehand and then it’s still sometimes sore.

mixed-emotionsSo now I have to look forward to going back every 8 weeks to have my port flushed.

The only alternative is to have it removed but I’m too scared I may need chemo in the future.  It is just an awful thing to have to live with as it protrudes from inside the skin plus there is a long scar. It’s located on my chest area.

It will be difficult to disguise in summer. I myself can’t even look at it and I don’t even go near it – “ek gril” – in other words I find it creepy and offputting.  Plus the thing moves in the night, or at least that’s what it feels like.  Sometimes I think ‘oops it’s tilted sideways.’

My scans are set for September when we’ll see the effect of the chemo.  Until then I may stay off the airwaves.  Friends who want more updates can send me a friend request on Facebook.  I appreciate your comments and thoughts!