Transplant +10: Reaching for normality

Last night saw my final dose of IV antibiotics administered. The blood cultures they took from me a few days ago grew nothing nasty and my temperature has been nicely in the normal range ever since. I’m still being given drips to protect my stomach, but these are short in duration. I’m slowly reaching for normality again. My Hickman line will be removed before I leave here – another sign of things returning to normal. It will no longer be needed to accompany the “Boom-ooh-yatatatah” of the medicine pump.

However, I’ve still quite a way to go before I’m ready to resume my place in the world. Fatigue is nearly always a problem for the first few weeks. I have to get some strength back as I’ve lost around 7 or 8 kg since I was admitted on September 4th. I’ve definitely lost what little muscle tone (please don’t laugh too loudly Ben) I had. Maybe I should take on the services of a personal trainer … I know a couple quite well, and one doesn’t live too far away from me. Perhaps in my second life I’ll become a gym bunny.

I’m going to take things very steadily. Nothing would waste all of the effort expended by the NHS faster than me overdoing it. I need to find my limits, they should improve over time, but I have to be sensible about things. If I can get back in the 7 by the end of October that would demonstrate to me that I’m making physical and mental progress.

The mental side of cancer is often neglected. Fortunately, my psychological training gives me a number of tools that I can use on myself. I haven’t found the emotional side of the original diagnosis and my eventual treatment too traumatic, so far. It helps me to talk though – to other people going through the same experiences and to my friends out here in ten pence piece land. You are all my therapy – thank you for putting up with me!

At a crossroads, trying to find my way back to normality.
At a crossroads, trying to find my way back to normality.

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Reader Comments

  1. Matt Smith

    Tim, good news so far. Your posts have made me feel connected to you again since we worked together as I’ve travelled around the world in the last few months. As you say, take it easy and I hope that each and every day you feel a little bit better.

    Personal trainer sounds like a good idea, but advice from the doctors before you leave is a better idea 🙂

    • tim

      Hi Matt,

      I shall certainly be taking all the advice from the team here that I can! Stay well on your travels and it sounds like you’re enjoyin your new(ish) role!


  2. Zoe Sellings

    Thank you for blogging about this Tim, at a time where my ward is heavy and short staffed, when I feel I am just getting through shifts in a task orientated way, it is good to read a patients point of veiw to remind me of why I went into this career! I’m glad you are getting good care on your ward and seem to be recovering well 🙂 x

    • tim

      Hi Zoe,

      Thank you – and thank you for the work that you do too. They’re a little short staffed here too (I suspect that’s the case all over the NHS at the moment), but their dedication, expertise and care is second to none.


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