Radiotherapy Week 1

Hello, welcome back to my blog this week and I hope you all have had a good week. This week I am going to try something different by chunking each topic down into a paragraph instead of doing a daily recount. I’m doing this as it may get a bit boring reading everyday that I had radiotherapy. Please let me know in the comments which structure you prefer. Right, so let’s get into my week.

Starting off with the main thing this week: radiotherapy and the hospital. What do I think of radiotherapy? Well… Many of you will have seen my daily video diaries and as you can tell I may not be a fan of radiotherapy. I am sticking with it though because I know this can save my life and that I am very lucky to receiving the treatment. So what don’t I like about it? It’s not the mask, which people tend to struggle with, I find that bit quite therapeutic and relaxing. But when the treatment starts for the 1 and a half minutes, my senses jump into overdrive. I see the waves, hear the buzzing machine, feel a funny burning sensation in the back of my head, and smell the acrid metal radio waves. I feel sick during it but it doesn’t last long, I’m always fine when it’s done.

Regarding this problem I am seeing my specialist nurse who is going to help sort my senses out. (I don’t know how). This isn’t the worst thing about radiotherapy though, although it can be quite therapeutic when you are in, I get really anxious and when I smell or see certain things I panic. I believe I can get over this and I will get the 6 weeks completed.

Have I experienced side effects from the radiation? Short answer: yes. I do get tired around an hour after the treatment and it lasts most of the day, I guess you just have to get on with it, and I have got a little bit burnt on my neck but we’re treating that and stopping it from getting worse.

So the rest of my time related to the hospital; I signed the consent form for the study which I mentioned and explained last week- I feel more relaxed now, I’m doing something to potentially find unique treatment for me – and I saw the radiotherapy nurse, she recommends late appointments so I can get into college. Can’t wait. And finally in the segment, there’s a new place which we’ve found. It’s called Maggie’ s and it is lovely and relaxing. They offer support and a place to chill for relatives and sufferers of cancer. I do like it but there’s one catch I have with it: it reminds me that I am unwell. Being asked if I was a relative was upsetting and then getting my story explained hurts. My cancer might be inoperable but I’m not scared. I just want the word ‘inoperable’ used and not ‘incurable’.

This nicely leads onto the rest of the week which I’m going to go back with- I just want to change it up a little. I went out Saturday with a friend me and my twin have not seen since Nursery /Reception. It’s so weird how a close bond is still there after such a long time. I loved it so much but I did get upset at one point. Someone from Primary school recognised me and I felt they asked how the disease was and not how I was. I answered but I’m not defined by my Cancer. I am still Matthew.

So I didn’t do anything much on the other days except Wednesday and Tuesday. Wednesday I went for breakfast with my family; I did have less due to a lack of appetite but the atmosphere made it. And Tuesday. Guess who I met up with??? Yep, the same person as the last 3 Tuesdays, I may have been tired but it doesn’t stop me from loving the company, as always, and enjoying myself. We just walked and talked. It’s always a great time.

Sidenote: I’m now able to run so will be trying to mobilise myself to get running again, just need to sort out this back pain.

Thank you so much for reading this week’s blog post, I hope you have enjoyed it and feel free to subscribe to my blog.

7 thoughts on “Radiotherapy Week 1

  1. Thank you for explaining your experiences Matthew. Our church members at St. James’ in Millbrook are praying for you. Many of us remember you and your brothers when you were small. We hope you are strong enough to get back to regular running soon. Never give up hope. God bless you and your family. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great blog Matthew its precise and informative. The videos are also great as its you showing possitive and constructive thoughts ❤ your an inspiration and yes the C word is a word and its about YOU not it. So thank you for sharing and thank you for being Matthew xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love how you bring a positive out of a negative. You are an inspiration to lots of people in similar positions.
    In just a few weeks time myself and my partner Ian are doing the Manchester to Blackpool bike ride to raise money for cancer research. We booked on to do this before lockdown as we had a friend who underwent surgery for brain cancer and consequently consequently is under regular bouts of chemotherapy. He like you got the devastating news that the cancer was in his brain stem. The surgery caused him to lose his sight in one eye. The treatment causes him to be very unwell. Like you he has a fantastic positive outlook and is fighting this head on. Just to let you know we are cycling 🚴‍♀️ with you in mind also as all monies raised towards the research to stop this dreadful disease is well worth it. So pleased you can start running again. Stay strong xxx

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  4. Hi Matthew- i’m one of the ED sisters at MRI and i have known your dad and Claire since i moved down to Manchester 18 years ago (when i worked at Crumpsall!)
    Last November i was unfortunately told my ovarian cancer had returned and i had to have a big op in January to remove it. No chemo this time as they don’t think it worked. I’m getting back to work now and bumped into Claire in the ambulance bay the other day. We were chatting about you and I said how you writing this blog was really helping me. It’s really hard to be constantly positive where cancer recurs- every day i stress a little bit about it and it maybe coming back again. Believe it or not- you are helping me deal with that fear. You spoke about just because something is inoperable-doesn’t mean it’s incurable. That right there Matthew really helped me get my head back on straight!
    I just wanted to write something to say thankyou and to let you know you are truly inspiring.
    Keep strong young man and I hope you’re back to running with your brother soon! 💪🏻🏃🏽‍♂️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, this comment has really made my week and shows why I love writing this blog. If I can help just one person feel better it’s an achievement and I’m glad you got through cancer. No matter what happens, there’s always hope and hope is always a strong emotion because it can be the difference between failing and succeeding. Thank you so much for sharing your story with me.

      Liked by 1 person

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