Tuesday, February 19, 2008


No chemo for another month. This morning I had a blood test and this afternoon I visited the oncologist who had the results of the test. And.......... the platelet count is far too low for me to have chemo tomorrow, so he's given me a month off. Yeah! For those not-so-medical buffs the platelet count is 66 and the normal range is 150-450.

What does this mean for me? It means I have to take care not to bump into things and not to cut myself as the low platelets will not allow the blood to clot and I'll be bruised and bleed a lot. Sounds easy, you think. If only you knew how many times I bang into things in my hurry to get somewhere and cut my fingers with sharp knives! Anyway, I'll just have to slow down and be more careful. The exciting thing about it is that I have a month when I will have a normal level of energy and probably not have to schedule a nanna nap quite so often. I'm really quite excited. It means my trip down the coast next week will take on a new dimension. I'll have much more energy to do things than I thought I'd have, so I'm going to take my golf clubs with me and see if I can get that swing back with a little bit of practice every day.

I can hear you saying "just take it easy, Terrie, don't do too much". OK. I know, and I will.

For those if you who have been reading for some time, you'll know my friend, Wilna who lives in France at Chateau Lalinde, is doing the amazing Pilgrims' Walk across the top of Spain. She started last Sunday and has been walking every day over mountains on rocky paths and really punishing her body to achieve her set target of kilometres each day. I've been following her progress and exchanging text messages with her daily. She says it's the hardest thing she's ever done, at the same time, the most wonderful experience. She's been writing a blog in the weeks leading up to her departure and there are some amazing photos in the early entries. So, if you're interested, you can see it at http://caminoforterrie.travellerspoint.com/

The other exciting thing that has happened this week is that I've been talking with Tim and Oscar via Skype and webcam. It's so lovely to chat to my son and see him while we're chatting as well as seeing my grandson, little Oscar, and hearing him gurgle and laugh and squeal - and scream! Oh how I continue to love being a grandmother! Soon the Hong Kong family will be doing it with me too.

I visited the Nan Tien Temple, near my home, with a friend during the week. The photo at the top was taken looking across the waterlilies towards the temple. I love the willow tree. Talk again soon

Monday, February 11, 2008

Two Weeks Later

Well, it's already 2 weeks since I last put an entry here. I know there are some readers who would like me to write more regularly, but honestly I really don't think there's that much to tell!

I've been enjoying spreading the good news that I reported last time and everyone is so pleased for me - as I am too, of course! You are all such wonderful supporters for me and it's so great to hear from so many of you as often as I do.

Since I last wrote I've had another chemo infusion and been on the chemo tablets - I finish this round tomorrow. I'm very lucky that I don't have terrible side effects from it and am still able to function fairly normally. The greatest effect it has on me is to rob me of my energy. And you all know how frustrating that is for me. I can't just keep on going all day like the 'Eveready bunny' does. I find that as long as I make sure I have my nanna nap each afternoon I can still do most of the things I like and need to do.

Since my victory in the surf with Bob Speed I've been going for a surf most days that I'm at home in Wollongong. The water is a great temperature, the waves are rolling and it's very invigorating. I'm sure that effort contributes to my sound sleep each afternoon.

I am also spending quite a lot of time in Sydney staying with my friend, Suzie, at Leichhardt. As I am the proud holder of a NSW Senior's Card, I can ride on public transport all day for $2.50. For those who don't know, Leichhardt is in the inner west of Sydney not far from the harbour, so buses and ferries have taken me to art galleries, movies, theatre, botanic gardens, dinner with friends and given me the pleasure of seeing lots of parts of Sydney that I haven't seen before. If you're a Sydney friend and I haven't caught up with you yet - well, let's get together soon.

Current round of chemo finishes tomorrow and the next one starts next Wednesday, so I have a week of feeling normal to do some extra things - like riding my bike and going for long walks - and perhaps not having to sleep every afternoon.

The week after next I hope to take my friend's campervan and travel along the south coast and into Victoria to Wilson's Promontory to visit my brother and his wife. They have been there for about 6 months and will be staying another 6 probably, before they return to Wollongong.

For those who don't know Australian geography, it's the southern most tip of the Australian mainland. Directly south is Bass Strait which you have to cross to then get to Tasmania. I plan to drive only a few hours each day and stay in a coastal campground each night. I'll tell you all about it when I get a chance. It will be my next adventure!