Welcome to The Chemo Ward

by Jules

Sibylesque Chemo Quote 2 As I walked into the chemo ward for the first time my heart sank. I was overwhelmed by the smell of medicines, and the sight of everyone tethered to their chairs by towering drip stands. I wondered how I’d manage 6 more months of this place.  It seemed like such a depressing sight. But immediately I sat in one of those ugly recliners I noticed people chatting, the nurses joking with them, someone offering sandwiches and drinks on a little tray.

chemo art

I felt an enormous mutual respect, and a complete sense of calm as my fellow chair people calmly as their ‘weed killer’ (as my partner refers to it) coursed through their veins. Gradually over the weeks I spoke to my neighbour – a different person each session. I met grandmas making books of family photos with their grandchildren, a man writing his memoirs with his grandson, another man who’d been coming in for chemo for 11 years after lymphoma with his lovely wife from Uzbekistan, all sorts of interesting people with all sorts of amazing life stories. I began to enjoy the atmosphere, if not the side effects that came on even as I chatted…

Sibylesque Dali, Galatea 0f the Spheres 1952
 Various chemo buddies came with me from time to time- My friend Delores who has recently been through a leukemia journey insisted on coming, though I didn’t want her to have to go back into the chemo zone. My wonderful sisters came to stay and we worked on various knitting projects and crosswords together. One woman said to me, after we’d exchanged pleasantries, ‘If I get run over by a bus tomorrow after all this I’ll be furious!’ My sentiments exactly! And we laughed together. 

By my last session I felt quite at home there. It’s not the place, it’s the people in it that make the difference. Everyone has a great story to tell. And they are all battlers, battling to stay alive, just like me. The TV drones on in the background, ironically telling stories of war zones and people wanting to kill each other as we are fighting the battle to just stay alive.

Jules’ other insightful post, Chemo Journal I, can be found here.

……………………………………………………………………..

Picture 1

Jules is a perceptive observer and an irrepressible positive force as well as director and publisher for the Neuro Orthopaedic Institute, Adelaide, SA. 

 

…………………………………………………………

Photo Source: pinterest

HOME

 

 
 

How Lilly Pilly Jam can Change Your Life

by Kerry Cue

Sibylesque Lilly Pilly Jam

In her inspirational article, Living with Purpose, NYT, Paula Span cited research that shows that our health benefits from contributing to and being connected with our community.

What better way to be connected than by contributing to a Fruit and Veg Swap.

semaphore fruit and veg swapThe idea grew out of the Australia wide Share and Save initiative, which aims to reduce waste by allowing locals to share, borrow, swap or access food, clothes, plants and other useful items.

Samantha Dunn with the Food swappers at the Upwey Grassroots Market  crdunn blogFruit and Veg Swaps can now be found in suburbs around the country. Including the Semaphore Fruit and Veg Swap, SA (LEFT), and the Upwey Grassroots Market, Victoria (BELOW) markets have sprung up around Australia

According to the Henley Fruit and Veg Swap, SA (BELOW):


‘The swap is informal and simple, and works on one main principle: people give whatever surplus home-grown produce they don’t need and can freely give, and they take whatever they can definitely use.’

Henley Fruit and Veg swapParticipants swap produce, stories, recipes and gardening tips. You can find the recipe for Lilly-Pilly Jelly here and here. I didn’t even know you could eat Lilly-Pillies.

Lilly Pilly Jelly   littlebitofthyme blog.

.

.

.

It just sounds a lot more fun than picking over damaged fruit listening to PA price checks at the local supermarket.

 PHOTO SOURCE: Semaphore fruit and veg swap BLOG, crdunn blog, Henley Fruit and Veg Swap blog and alittlebitofthyme blog.

HOME