Testing how I'd look bald.
This whole period is very hazy to me, mainly because it all happened so fast. My feet didn't even touch the ground and it wasn't until a good while later that I finally started to come to terms with everything.
The week following my meeting with my Consultant, Ian, was a week full of tests and one of the most awkward situations in my life so far, which I'm sure you'll all be delighted to hear about!
I had a test known as a kidney function test, to check that my kidneys were in full working order before I started chemotherapy. This was because if they were weak in any way the chemotherapy dose would have to be reduced slightly to stop it damaging my kidneys any further. As I already mentioned, some of the chemotherapy drugs could damage my heart so they also scanned my heart to check it wasn't defective in any way. Luckily both these tests came back okay, meaning physically I was fit to start chemotherapy.
There was one more thing I had to do before I could start chemotherapy and that was to store some sperm. This was probably the most awkward thing I've ever had to do. Especially as my parents would be in the waiting room at the fertility clinic! Some of the looks people gave me while there were fantastic! I don't think I've ever seen someone look so confused and/or disgusted!
The first time I went there they told me I wouldn't be able to do it because they hadn't got the correct forms. Cue a comment from my Dad about it being a bit of an anticlimax! I was however, allowed to store some on the second visit.
I was also told that it was unlikely that I would regain the ability to have children naturally because of the strength of the chemotherapy I would be on, but I still consider myself one of the lucky ones. I know of many people who never had the opportunity to store sperm or eggs in a female's case.
The clock tower at the hospital where my sperm is stored.
I knew I was meant to be starting chemotherapy on the 27th of September. It's hard knowing that you're going to lose your hair. It's confusing to know you probably won't be able to have kids naturally. It's very hard to sign a form to say you want chemotherapy. Some people don't have treatment. Sometimes the bravest thing isn't to carry on fighting, sometimes the bravest thing is facing the fact that treatment might not be worth it. I have the utmost respect for those that choose not to have treatment. It's a fact that not everyone survives, there's nothing anyone can do about it, life is not infinite.
I knew I wanted to try to fight though, I knew I had too much to live for to sit back and let this be the end. I knew I was doing it for my friends and family. I know if it hadn't been for them I wouldn't have chosen to have treatment.
I had everything ready. I had everything packed. I was as ready as I ever would be.