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I thought it was going to be a quiet period. I had a regular cryotherapy session over at Thoracic Park on Monday. There was evidence of infection and the op itself was a bleeder when they hit the tumour so they put me on more antibiotics. But I should know by now: there is always a place for an unexpected and extreme event in CancerWorld. Quiet life? No way. That’s not how art is made.

On Tuesday, I was home working at my desk and trying to finish the last line in an email to a customer. I became aware that I was disoriented. Couldn’t work out what the mouse or keyboard did any more. I thought it prudent to lie down until it passed. It was then that I had the seizure. The pain down my left side made me think I had a PE clot that was moving upwards. Then I lost consciousness and I’m told I experienced convulsions.

This one was a proper 999 / Ambulance moment. First time ever in all these years I’ve had to do that. By the time I came around, it was to see three Paramedics standing in my bedroom. It was off to A&E for me.

Long story short, the cancer has spread to my brain.

The CT scan showed up cerebral metastases with swelling (oedema) on the surrounding tissue. They kept me in hospital until the Wednesday. I’m booked in for an MRI scan early Monday next and I have a post-discharge follow-up session in Clinic the same evening to hear more details. In the meantime they’ve put me on anti-epilepsy drugs plus steroids to reduce swelling. They’ve told me to tear up my driving license and avoid machinery.

Brain metastasis in colorectal cancer is a rare thing – typically in the 2-3% range. But, I’ve survived so long beyond the few average years that are expected that I guess I’m now pushing the envelope where these stats are concerned. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that this will be treatable. Whole-brain or localised radiotherapy would be one option. We shall see.

The day after I was discharged was my 57th birthday. I had the most fantastic few days with amazing and thoughtful gestures bestowed on me from every side. I even went in to the office and had a couple of hours at the beer festival. Arsenal did the necessary and won the FA Cup for me. I’m dizzy and I like to have someone near me when I’m out and about, but I’m happy. I just need to stay alive to enjoy all the good things I have.