I didn’t quite realise how long it has been since my last post. We have been pottering along nicely these last few weeks and have been dealing with gastro related stuff mainly. Vega had the long awaited and dreaded Endoscopy/Colonoscopy combo in June, after months and months of pain and weird toilet behaviour. The main purpose of this was to take some biopsies and exclude something “more sinister” (as our Gastroenterologist calls it) going on. More sinister in Vega’s case means a secondary cancer of the stomach or bowels.

Vega did incredibly well with a gruelling fasting regime before the procedure and on the day too, all went fine. We had been given an appointment at the end of August to discuss results but had a letter in the post a week after the procedure informing us the appointment had been brought forward to July. My spider senses tingled a little upon receipt of the letter, but I pacified myself with the thought that if it was urgent they would have called.

Our appointment was on Monday this week. We arrived at Kings and sat in the waiting room. Usually you get called in a room with the nurses for weighing and obs, but this time they called us through to one of the consultants rooms at the back to do all this and the nurses wanted to know all kind of other stuff they usually do not ask. Then they sent us to sit in the *whispers* oncology waiting area. My confidence in this whole remission business has grown steadily over the last months, but I kidd you not the lump in my throat was tennis ball sized.

Ten minutes later the gastro consultant calls us in- the results from the procedure were good. Top end and bottom end were fine, stomach in the middle showed 60%+ erosions, confirming what we have suspected all along, that Vega had an ulcer previously but that this is now healing. They were surprised by the size it must have been and were saying she must have been in a lot of pain because of it (no shit!). Biopsies came back inconclusive. He explained that there was quite a bit of inflammation but they could not say why or what is the cause.

So new plan of action is an exclusion diet. First they said we should exclude dairy and wheat, but then decided to do one at a time, for three weeks each. Apparently it is very common for children to present with allergies and intolerances after chemotherapy. We have to take notes on pain levels over the next few weeks to see if the exclusion of either of these two groups makes a difference. Vega has been dairy free since Monday, responsible as ever, telling everyone she can’t have milk or cheese or butter. Alys has been chipping in too, reiterating “no cow’s milk, sheep’s milk, goat’s milk or milk milk”.

Anyway, let’s see how that all turns out. I am glad that our short stay in the oncology waiting room was just that. I will continue to believe in remission but my skittish behaviour confirms the slow process that is letting go of the fear.

Next week, Marsden for Vega’s three monthly check up.


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