There are certain things in life that you simply cannot prepare for, dream of or consider until they creep up and hit you hard in the stomach. 18 months ago I was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma at the age of 33 and over night felt as if all the things that defined me evaporated and I became Mark, the guy with cancer. Poor sod. It did not take me long, however, to decide that cancer would not define me and I've been fighting it ever since with the immeasurable support of my wonderful family and friends but most of all with the astounding strength and will of Alison - my wife and guardian angel.
Today is known as -6 because it's 6 days before I get my new immune system on Day Zero. From there on in I'm in the hands of the incredibly brilliant medical team at St James' Hospital in Leeds - Jimmy's. 4 weeks in isolation? Perhaps 6? It's not the same four walls that worry me, it's the food; a subject upon which I may write extensively as it is, quite simply, dreadful. On the back of the bathroom door there is a document known as the Bristol Stool Chart which is used to describe one's stools. It can, though, also be used to describe the food. eg. Tonight's dinner of fish and chips consisted of breaded "fish" - a type 3 fish, long and sausage shaped with a cracked surface and peas - type 6 peas, fluffy and mushy. Cuppa - type 7, brown and entirely liquid. You get the idea.
I will attach a copy of the chart for reference and sign off for tonight.
If you've recently been diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma and have yet to receive treatment you could be eligible to take part in a new clincial trial. Read more here.