Monday, 20 August 2012

Chemo gone...

Well here I am, still here that is...

As you all know by now (not like I've been tweeting or anything) I've been through a rough few months. Now though, it's getting to the end of my treatment. (nothing to do with sanity I may add)

I have come through the worst of the chemo and not had any of the really major problems, the ones that would have landed me back in hospital that is.

The main problems I've had are Nausea, fatigue and certain problems in the toilet department, of which I'll not go into :-) (big sigh of relief I hear there).
I also seem to have lost some appetite, but not to the extent that I've lost weight.

I'm still in bed at this moment, I know it's 10:15am on a Monday but I feel crap right now, though I should get up and have breakfast.

What is the next step for me now? Well I'm going to take part in a Study with the McMillan Trust to do with rehabilitation after testicular cancer, it will hopefully help me with losing weight as well as any financial things that may be a problem due to this. Other benefits will be meeting others who have gone thought the same thing, and being ably to come to grips with it all.

Anyway, I'm off, hope you never have to go through any of this, I've been lucky in my bad luck, it's not that great for most out there.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, 17 August 2012


Well, I have to say, I love KeePass

It's a password manager, a very good one, and what's more its free.
Now you may think that yes, it's free but is it good enough to trust with your critical and personal account information etc... The databases are encrypted using the best and most secure encryption algorithms currently known (AES and Twofish). So I would say a resounding YES!

Not only is it a linux program, but, it runs on windows too, there are Mac OSX and IOS versions as well as Android etc. in short you can use it cross platform from PC to Mobile to tablet.

Yes amazing eh? It's open source honest...

Heres how I use it.

I use it in conjunction with DropBox, another greatly useful thing to sign up for, sign up Here.

I created a new Database using a password and a key file.
I then dropped the database into my DropBox so that I could synchronise across all my computers and devices (yes DropBox is also cross platform)

Now you may think "wait a minute, it's out there in the big bad interweb, isn't that a bit unsecured?" No, it's not, because the file is encrypted for one with your password, but this is not enough as you would be aware, so remember that key file? Well copy this file to all your devices, you need this to open the database file, without it you will not be able to access the file.

For your desktop computer, just copy the key file to a USB stick, install the software on your PC and point it to the file when you use your password database, then remove the USB Stick for double security as its not permanently on your system.

Et viola! You have a free cross platform, cross device password manager you can trust in.

Never get get caught short when you access a website you can't remember the password for.

KeePass also has features that you can use when it's running on the desktop where you can get it to open the URL you've included in your password entry in the database, also you can configure it to automatically log you into the site without actually having to type in your details.

Great stuff!

Oh! Just a reminder, put the key file manually on the devices you want KeePass on, do not make it available anywhere, no key file means no access, therefore even if someone knows your password they will not be able to access your database.

Hope you enjoyed this article, it's been a while I know...

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Feeling like a pin cushion

Well, here we are again.
On Monday last week as most of you will have noticed by my tweets, I had a Kidney function test to determine how much Carboplatin (Chemo drug) I was to be administered. This went rather unsmoothly, my veins are very shy things it seems.
They never managed to get a cannula in till I had been there two hours (I arrived at 8:30am) appointment was 9:30an, it had gone 11:30am before they started.
They managed to get one in on my right hand in the end. Though this later failed. They injected me with an isotope and the idea was to take bloods at these time intervals
2 hrs
2.5 hrs
3 hrs
4 hrs

Unfortunately the cannula failed, so they had to do the last three bloods the old fashioned way, stab me for each of them :-)
All in all I had roughly 13 to 14 punctures over both arms by the time I got out.
While I was there for this they sprung on my that I was coming back in on the Friday for the actual chemo.
So, here I am, quick appointment in the morning for a consultant appointment, then back at 2:30pm for the actual chemo.
These guys really are good, no problems at all getting a cannula in, not that surprising really. The whole process took around 2 hours, they said that because I'm only getting one session and on the results of my test earlier in the week I was getting quite a heavy dose.
I shall blog a little more later. Sorry if I'm not really too consistent with this blogging lark, I'm not the best at this stuff.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Relief is in he air

Just to bring everyone up to date, the CT Scan results and the blood test results all came back clear.

I'm very relived at this as you may guess, I now have a course of Carboplatin (chemo) to go through.

No longer am I back from a break to Dublin than I have an appointment for the Monday coming to go into a day ward to have the precursory tests done to determine the dosage of Carboplatin I'll be given. This involves being injected with some radioactive solution and bloods taken every hour or so over four to five hours.

I'll be glowing in the dark after that :-)

But seriously, I'll be given only one course of chemo to make sure that my chances of reoccurrence is minimised.

The reason for this is that due to the other various past surgeries I've had I'n my life is have a 20% chance of reoccurrence over and above the normal amount.

So the chemo will be done in the next couple of weeks.

Signing off.... But not bailing out....

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Spring one on me why don't ya!

Jeez, it's bad enough waiting for an appointment for results in four weeks time, but when a different department of the hospital phones you direct to ask you to come in for an appointment in two dats time it just freaks you out

I was told that I might be referred to the Beatson Cancer Unit after my op for further treatment, hopefully this is all that it is, a consultation to talk about the possibility further of treatment, or the results of the CT and biopsy.

Still it threw me for six a bit. Hope this doesn't mean I need to cancel any holidays I've got booked and planed, to be honest I need the time away from things to get my head sorted.

So, that's it, apart from the tenderness I'm still recovering well so far and feel a lot better.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Clyde View

This was the view back down towards the centre of Glasgow on the clydeside.

Looking back from the place where the new Transport Museum has been built.

SECC Zombie attraction.

It was creepy walking through the SECC earlier today, not a soul to be seen only the doors at either end open. I was waiting for the Zombie hordes to come rushing down the mall like length of it.

Friday, 29 June 2012


By jingo!

I'm looking a hell of a lot better, I've been told by my wife that I actually have colour coming back to my complexion. For months now I've been kind of looking a bit grey.

I feel better too, now if this is a direct result of the op I'm too sure, but it's only been a week. It could be of course that I've just been forced to relax and sleep so this has done me good in itself.

So, for now I feel good, better than I have done for months in fact.

It'll be August before I get to see the consultants again, plenty of time for them to get all data from scans, bloods and biopsies etc and collate all the data to find out where we go from there.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Let the pain begin

Multitudes of curses cannot contain the feeling I have in my groin area this morning.

Pain meds are kicking in though, the second day after an op is always the worst. Having trouble sitting down as you may imagine.

I'm going to have to buy a humidifier for the bedroom. I've been having trouble breathing at night and I'm pretty sure it's because the room is so dry. I was alright in the hospital but as soon as I came back home I started to suffer again.

Coughing is a bitch to say the least...

Well at least now I can have some real quality coffee, the hospital stuff was an abomination.

Looks like its now time to put up my feet and watch mind numbing telly.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

The diagnosis continues

At last I'm back home, not a bad turnaround, went in yesterday and back out today.

All is not done though as you may well know... I now await for a CT Scan appointment and more bloods to be checked.
So far all bloods that have been done have shown no markers which is a good thing. But the scans will hopefully confirm that nothing has migrated anywhere else, there is always the possibility of it proving the opposite of course.

I won't know anything until all this has been done of course, so there's no point in speculating.

Now I just need to recover from the procedure which has just been done, so feet up telly on and get me dinner woman! :-)

That comment will get me arse kicked I'm sure :-)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, 22 June 2012

The Day I dropped a Ball

It's Done, one ball has departed the temple of swoon. :-)

I was admitted (committed) yesterday at 9am but because of complications to some other poor buggers operation I was not taken down until 2:30pm. As is my curse in hospital I slept all day till the op.

I am now the proud owner of an artificial ball (this makes me laugh for some reason). The staff here have been good. It's reassuring the amount of times that they go over your details before the operation, no mistakes there... :-)

I was unsure at first if they would do the prosthesis at the same time, but it looks like they have. I'm obviously pretty tender down there this morning.
The worst thing I think when you've had an op is having to use one of those Piss bottles. I mean you don't so much know if your filling it or filling your bed until its too late (luckily I didn't miss).

I was told last night that I will go home today, but as hospitals go, I'll not hold my breath.

That'll do for now I think, need to go fill a bottle again...
Oh and it just so happens to be my birthday today, I'm a whopping 47 years young, way past the average age for this bleeding cancer so I'm told. First Keratoconus now this, at this rate I'm a lot younger than I am and you'll all have to put up with me well into my 90's and beyond :-)

BTW my time zone is GMT so it's actually the 23rd while I write this.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, 21 June 2012


Just woke up, it's 2:30am, I have a feeling that the curry may have been a bad idea, I got acid reflux...

Now that I'm awake all of a sudden I can't get back to sleep.

Feeling a bit apprehensive now as the time for going in for the op gets closer. I'm the confusion I was in at the consultation on Wednesday I inadvertently said the I didn't want a prostheses, but I think I may do. I'll have to impress on them when I go in that this is the case.

I feel like hell right now. Still by the end of the day it'll all be over.

The wonder of you

Well here I am, the info from yesterday has been spread..

The gang of followers I have on twitter (all 1170 odd) have been fab, and I thank you all for the support even at this early stage.

There are one or two out there that are exceptional, you know who you are...

I am now sort of coming to terms with the reality of it all, here I am at the beginning of this physical journey and it may be long or short, who knows, the next few days will tell.

At least I don't need to worry about half starving tonight as I have been told that as long as I don't eat anything after midnight I'll be alright.

Should I have a curry or is that bad of me?

If I actually manage to tweet or blog tomorrow it should be highly entertaining as I'll be recovering from general anaesthetic...

Okay I'm off my bath now, hope I don't get the BIG nurse with the big rough hands and beard for a bed bath while in in hospital...

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

A day of devastation to the normal course of life.

Today I have been diagnosed with Testicular Cancer. There I said it...

From a visit two weeks ago to the docs to an ultrasound scan on Monday last week, and then the bombshell appointment this morning.

I had a suspicion of the worst because of the exceptional speed that things have progressed.

So, right before the day of my 47th birthday I'll be going in to have the culprit removed (right one). I'll just have to shorten my favourite curse to BOLLOCK from now on.

I have had a cough since roughly the same time that I noticed things were painful and not quite right, ie. testicle had grown larger, I've been driving people nuts with the cough. But reading up a bit on the condition this might imply that lymph nodes may be affected, so I'm getting an X-ray to the chest as well.

Well at least the op will be swift, I shall only be in the hospital for the one day, possibly two at the most. I'll then be off work for around a week or so.

Was going to book holiday too next month so that we could go on a walking holiday again this year, but it looks like I won't be walking far after the next week.

I may opt for a holiday to Lake Como if I can get reasonable flight
prices from Glasgow to Milan. There is a very nice little place called Varenna on the east side of the lake, it's the perfect place to chill out and watch the world go by (maybe I'm being optimistic thinking I'll be able to go).

Well for now I'll sign off, I will try and keep this blog up to date with the progress over the course of the treatment to come.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, 1 April 2012

The night, the morn

The day passes
Light lingers at the end
Waiting stars impatient
Their domain now rising
The slowing of the flow of time
To rest the mind is welcome
In slumber we refresh
Our heart we rest beside us
Forever in search of kindred spirt
The flow of night encompass
Till morning brings resurgence
The life, the breath, the beat of life.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

A Moment of Silence

In the modern world
The city never sleeps

Time is fleeting
Rush hour creeps

All around the bustle speaks
Its noise a hum in natures Keep

The older streets are full of yearning
For the world where life was once discerning

A glitch in time induces silence
For just one moment of perfect pause

The air is still
The light is ethereal

A haze of heat
Your mind is reeling

No sound penetrates
No vibrations

Your mind is clear
Suddenly lost in aural clearing

Natures cruelty on mankind
The noise returns the senses dulled

This man made cell
Of aural hell

The rumble stays
A hum invades

The city awake
Never still, never in slumber

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

The wonders of modern technology

Here I am at this very moment languishing in a hot bath tweeting on my iPad.
I know, it's not a safe thing to do as far as the iPad is concerned but, it's doable.

It's the fact that a few years ago nobody would even have thought it possible to be connected 100% of the time anywhere and still go about doing the daily rigmaroles that we all do.

Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately, we haven't got to the point where our tech can scrub our backs for us. Well, not side Japan I would hazard :-)

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Over Xmas

Gone are the mince pies Locked is the stollen Wrappings are binned Presents now worn Decorations are packed The tree packed or thrown Xmas has gone The new year now growing Bring on the new times In memory the old Never look back To the bad times of old. Rejoice in the future Whatever it brings There may be disruption But also time to sing

Friday, 6 January 2012

Taken from train on way back

From the West Highland Way. There are no roads that lead to this place, only the train. I really ought to go there one day for a short break.

Blogpress is back

Well well well, looks like me old blogging app on the iPad has finally been updated to IOS 5 at long bloody last, I mean how long has IOS 5 been out on th iPad? This is one of the main reasons why there has not been many blogs from me in recent months. I know i'm daft, most would have gone out and found themselves another app, but I liked Blogpress and couldn't find another I really liked. (first blog with Blogpress for a while)