Siobhan M
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A week in the life of a supporter

Siobhan M
Posted by
26 Sep 2013

I won’t lie. It isn’t always easy to spring out of bed after a, shall we say, entertaining night out. But the morning in question I was collecting for Small Change BIG Impact so I pinged my microwave porridge, threw my pirate outfit in a bag and ran for the bus.

It was a cloudy sort of Saturday in Brighton and a lot of people seemed preoccupied as they walked by. But Percy the parrot (not a real bird) did attract attention, and once folk came over, they donated too and with big smiles. I got the chance to talk to some people who, like me, hold the cause close to their hearts - as well as surprise a few friends who didn’t expect me to go out before shaving.

And I also got talking to a lovely guy who life had dealt a really rough hand to as he found himself currently living on the streets. We swapped stories and as I shook hands with him, he must have noticed who I was from reynaud’s (thanks chemo!) as he gave me his cup of tea to help warm me up. I was pretty blown away by this, and after my shift of collecting, I took his order for lunch before jumping on the bus home full of good feelings about the world.

Tuesday was results day for me after a PET/CT scan a fortnight earlier. Now, when I was younger I was always nervous about getting results of tests or exams but here’s the thing. Then, I knew I had a hand in what came back, but you can’t revise for a cancer scan. It is totally out of your control. I had had a bit of a scare over the summer and although my biopsy was good, the little electric bolts of fear and doubt had still been catching me unawares. I’m a fan of compound words so am very glad to share that this is known in some circles as ‘scanxiety’. And I would imagine that it probably never goes away. Once you’ve been let down so very badly by your health, I think it is harder to believe that you’re better and staying that way.

So you can imagine my joy on hearing my consultant greet me with a “How have you been cos your scans are all good.” Pub quiz celebrations ensued.

Thursday started with a 4 mile run with my flatmate, as I’m taking on the Brighton Half Marathon as one of the Unstoppables next February. It then saw me take my sweaty self to the corner shop to pick up a copy of Take a Break magazine where my dressing up through treatment and beyond for LLR was featured. Not your everyday before breakfast routine, but it was then time to ping some more microwave porridge before heading off to work.

Like I always used to before I got cancer.

And how I still do. Just with some different bits in between.

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.



Your posts are always such a joy to read! You're so eloquent and great at putting into words what it is like to be you - which by the way, despite your diagnosis, sounds awesome - and it's good to hear about not just the immediate impact of a cancer diagnosis and treatment but what you have to live with afterwards.


A touching, humorous, eloquent blog.

Ellie Dawes

Shiv you are such a legend! Love your blog, great to hear your scan results were good. Hope the beard helped to keep your face warm on Saturday, it is awesome and I want one.


Thanks very much for this brilliant blog Shiv and thanks so much for your help with Small Change, BIG Impact. We really appreciate you giving up your Saturday morning, dressing up as a pirate and raising vital funds!