The news we don’t want to hear

I blurt out everything uncontrollably. I say too much and regret it when I am lay in bed afterwards. However, the one thing I have never really blurted out in ‘real life’ or this blog is my dad’s health I think very few people really know the ins and outs so feel special I’m sharing this with you all.

I don’t think it’s too right to dig into the deep depths of everything I’m sure my dad won’t be too chuffed it’s all over the internet so some personal details will be left out.

Here goes nothing …

10 years ago, I received the news that doctors had found that my dad had a brain tumor.

I was 15/16 at this time, young and very erratic with my emotions. Thankfully, after months of operations, MRIs, failed operations, tests and a lot of bloody waiting the backbone of our country (NHS) delivered the hopeful news that the tumour was not cancerous, and no more operations were to go ahead.

Signing up to 10 years of hospital check-up appointments was a small price to pay, so my dad agreed. Travelling over an hour each way to a specialist hospital for check-ups whenever they asked, but we were thankful.

The beginning of 2020 was the date we had been waiting for, 10 years had gone and dad attended his final appointment. Made up we were, he had no more long drives to the specialist hospital and no more having to stay into hotels just to make the appointment times, that journey was closed.

We fast-forward now to Father’s Day 2020, the UK is in a national lockdown and my dad asks me to visit him in his garden (socially distanced). I’ll add we have being really good during lockdown, so when he asked I obviously went. He explained to me that he has not been feeling too great and had a doctor’s appointment booked,  was going to go to the doctors. Naively I thought nothing of it but this was unfortunately the start of another long road we weren’t prepared for.

Dad attended his initial appointment, and had to attend a scan after this we got the news that they could see tumors on his bladder. Only a few months after we celebrated the ‘no more hospital appointments’ he was straight back in.

This was a super difficult time, work had asked us all back into the office full time and I couldn’t even visit dad due to Coronavirus.

He had the operation to remove the tumors and then the tests began to see if they were cancerous.

Then we wait.

And wait.

Fuck me all this waiting was making me so anxious.

I felt waves of sadness so often, I could not understand how pubs, restaurants and work were all expecting people to go back to normal but my life had turned on its head. The waves of sadness came at such random times, in work toilets, in my car, on my sofa, in my bed. I promise you I am not an overly emotionally person, but this waiting and waiting killed me.

I received that dreaded phone call whilst in work, nothing really prepares you for it and I tried to hold it together whilst my dad sat on the phone and explained everything to me and all the options the doctors had given. I’m quite good at not showing my emotions, I don’t know if that is a good trait or bad but I don’t really show people how I actually feel maybe that’s why writing it all down makes me feel better.

As they had to remove the tumors to check for the cancer, at least they were gone but the doctors were still concerned that more would produce and started giving a number of options chemo, operations and some other thing that has completely been removed from my memory.

We all researched every option and the risks with every option but ultimately the decision was my Dad’s. He had another appointment with his specialist and by then chemo was no longer an option. The specialist suggested removing the bladder completely, something we had all not really wanted.

A week of researching and decision-making went by and my dad decided to go with the specialist’s recommendation and remove his bladder. A long vigorous operation, which has complications before and after which can be dangerous it also weakens your immune system and with coronavirus back on the rise it meant another long stretch of staying inside.

Thankfully, the operation went well, in short my dad is now cancer free. It has not been an easy year for anyone, and I know many people have not been as lucky as I have with their parent’s health. I can only say thank you to the NHS for my luck, honestly thank you.

And, that’s the end, here’s to 10 more years of appointments the next celebration party will be in 2030.

Love you and leave you, Lizi xx