I’ve moved!

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New Home

In line with me turning 30, I have moved over to my new blog: Life,Love and Lollipops.

See you there!

Life, Love and Lollipops

This weekend was the long awaited “Mummy Blogger’s” conference, CyberMummy11. I had been looking forward to it for ages. I couldn’t wait to see bloggers that I had previously met, and meet others that I felt I already knew.

Although, part of me wondered if I was out of my depth.

I’m not a writer. Not really. I like to kid myself that I might be, but I’m not. I read other peoples blogs, and they ARE writers. Their posts flow nicely and they are deep and meaningful. My 400 twitter followers pale into comparison to their thousands.

This blog, ‘kin Hodgkin’s started as a cancer blog. And there was plenty of cancer to blog about.

Now? Not so much, and I have felt for a while now that I needed to do one of two things: 1) Stop blogging or 2) Rebrand.

Both of these scare me. I don’t want to stop blogging. I enjoy it. Sometimes I get writers block, and I go quiet for a week and I find myself sat in front of my laptop wondering exactly what to write about.

Rebranding? Changing my blog name, blog url, blog design. Scary stuff. What if no one reads it? What if it’s all for nothing?

I don’t feel like ‘kin Hodgkin’s has a future. I need to move on from my cancer, and that means moving on from this blog. I won’t be deleting this blog, just like I can’t erase the fact I had cancer. That will always be a part of me, and so will ‘kin Hodgkin’s.

The new one will be up and running soon, and I will post here to let you know when that happens so you can come on over and join me. I hope you will.

No, it’s STILL not Croup.

Last night, we paid our first visit to Children’s A&E. It’s one that I hope we don’t have to make again any time soon.

Those of you that follow me on Twitter, or are friends on Facebook will know that Jake has had a cough pretty much constantly since he was about 8 months old. I remember, because it was the day of my operation.

His last bout of it has lasted about 6 weeks and we have been to and from the doctors about 4 times. Yesterday morning was one of those times. She gave him some granules to try, sprinkled over food or directly into his mouth (yeah, that’s a likely story) and has referred him to the pediatrician’s at the Children’s hospital.

He couldn’t go 30 seconds without coughing, it was constant, and he was starting to get annoyed with it, and he was struggling to breathe, using his secondary muscles rather than his chest.

At the hospital, he had a chest x-ray which shows that he’d had infection but that it was resolving, so she didn’t prescribe him anymore antibiotics, but she has prescribed steroids and has told us to persevere with the inhaler. A lot.

Today, he has had to have 8 puffs every 4 hours. Tomorrow, 6 puffs every 4 hours, the day after, 4 puffs every 4 hours, until we are down to 2 puffs.

He is fine in himself. No temperature, not miserable. He was running around soft-play this morning as if nothing was wrong.

My poor little monkey. I hope his cough goes soon, for him, as much as my sanity!

The Day I Found Out

I did my first vlog the other day as part of “The Day I Found Out” project. I have been deliberating for 6 days as to whether to post it on my blog or not.

Here it is. I say “urm” alot. Sorry about that.

Hate Needles? Love emla

In just over 2 weeks, I will be in London for this years CyberMummy. I was unable to go last year due to chemo and the such like. However, this year I shall be there with bells on, and I am fortunate enough to have been sponsored by the lovely people at emla.

emla is something I only heard about fairly recently, but I so wish I knew about it when I was going through chemo and having lots and lots of needles.

emla is a cream that is a local anaesthetic that has been successfully used in the UK for 25 years. The cream is available in a ‘all-in-one’ pack from your local pharmacy to help numb the pain of the needle during child vaccinations, minor skin procedures, blood donation and travel vaccinations, and in my case: chemo.

Luckily, we never had a problem taking Jake for his injections. He just tended to sit there and watch while the nurse jabbed him. In fact, it was only his 8 week injections that he cried for. He’s hard, obviously.

While I’ve always been OK with having blood tests done, having a needle in your forearm for chemo is totally different, and towards the end of my treatments, it got worse and worse. It’s not that I’m scared of needles, it’s just that I didn’t relish the pain. Especially when it took them 4 or 5 goes to get a needle in!

So, if you are thinking that emla is just for children, think again.

Did you know that out of the more than 60 million people living in the UK, only 1.6 million actually donate blood every year. The National Blood Service is always looking for new donors, but some people avoid it purely because of a fear of needles. emla can be applied one hour before your appointment to make donating blood a less nerve wrecking experience (and you get a cup of tea and a biscuit). A lot of people going through cancer treatment rely on those donations. I’m fortunate (and unusual I think) that I never needed one.

Do you have any holiday plans for this year? Going somewhere that you might need a vaccine for? Thinking about not having it done because of a fear of needles? With emla, you don’t have to put your health at risk, AND you don’t have to have the pain of the needle. Everyone is a winner!

emla is available from your local pharmacy and can be used on babies from full term, children and adults. Full instructions are included.

Do GP Surgeries Charge Rent?

Jake and  I have been back and forth to the doctors again over the last few days. Jake with this stupid cough, and me with my back. But my back is partly to do with Jake’s cough. I am sure that soon they will start asking us to pay rent!

The doctor gave him some antibiotics, and approximately 30 seconds after he had it, he was sick. EVERYWHERE. All over me, all over him, all over the floor. It wasn’t the taste of it, he was quite happy to take it, it just didn’t agree with him. Then, as I was bending down to move him out the way and clear up, my back went. Luckily, as Neil works from home he rushed downstairs to see what was going on and managed to get me into a chair, and clean up the sick. I’d had twinges for a few days, but thought nothing of it. Luckily, my parents have helped over the last few days, I wouldn’t have managed otherwise. How we will get through the next few days remains to be seen. Neil even cooked me tea tonight 🙂

Jake is now on new antibiotics and is managing to keep them down, and we are going back to see the doctor in 2 weeks. As for my back, I have been given cocodamol and a form to self refer for physio. The GP I saw today is fairly confident it’s just muscular and it should clear up in a few weeks.

It has until June 15th to get better, because I have a date with 5 handsome men in Cardiff! Is it just me, or has Jason Orange gotten better looking the older he is?

And then of course, there is CyberMummy in just over 2 weeks, Neil and mine’s 5th wedding anniversary the day after CyberMummy (which I am now being sponsored for, more on that soon!), and the small matter of me turning 30. 

So here’s hoping that we will both be feeling better soon for all the fun and frolics!

Here and Now

I am fed up of being constantly ill. I finished chemo nine months ago, so you’d think by now that my immune system would be back up to scratch, but no. I have pretty much been constantly ill for the last month, with a reprieve of a few days here and there.

It is really frustrating. I hate it and it’s starting to get me down. The poor doctor that I saw on Friday, I don’t think she knew what hit her when I went in to see her. There is also the small fact that I turn 30 at the end of the month, so intend on letting my hair down, and I have a nagging feeling that I will be on antibiotics, so will be the driver of the evening. 

However, with all of this going on, I do still feel fortunate. I finished chemo 9 months ago and I am still in remission. I am a member of a lymphoma forum. I don’t go on as much as I used to, but I do still check in on a regular basis and was so saddened to read about a girl called Bekah. In November, she reached complete remission after 4 years of treatment. Words she never thought she’d hear. But, this week, she has found out that she has relapsed again, yet she remains so positive.

I wish I had her strength of mind.

It does make it scary. Yes, I’m in remission. Yes, I’m cancer free. And while that is wonderful in the here and now, I would just love to know that it’s not just for the here and now, but for now and forever.

Save the Children

Save the Children have launched a campaign to make basic healthcare available and free of charge to the world’s poorest children and their mum’s. On June 13 2011, the UK is hosting a half day global vaccination summit in London, where world leaders and decision makers will decide how to get vaccines to the world’s poorest children.

In the UK, we take it for granted that our children will receive these vaccines, but these same vaccines are not available to 1 in 5 children worldwide. It is so sad that the children most at risk in the poorer countries are the children that don’t receive them. I know it’s not much fun having to take the littlies for their injections, but they are so fortunate that they are able to have them.

I was tagged by Very Busy Mama to take part in a challenge started by Red Ted Art

The challenge is simple:

1) Get your child to either draw or craft a self portrait of themselves now or in the future. (or in my case, seeing as I am so terrible at drawing, I got hubby to do it!)

3) Sign the Save the Children petition and then pass it onto your friends

4) Write a blog post about it as soon as possible, including info about Save the Children and the petition. We want as many people linked up AND signed up the petition by Sunday 29th May 2011

5) Tag 8 fellow blogger friends

Now, it’s a bit late in the day for me to be tagging people, but for everyone who reads this either from Facebook, Twitter, or email subscription, you are all tagged to sign the petition. Yes, all of you. If you blog, and you haven’t been tagged and you want to be, this is your tag.

Come on, let’s make a difference.

No, it’s not Croup

Jake has a cough. Again. Or should I say still? He seems to have had a cough almost permanently since he was about 8 months old. I remember, because the first time he went to the doctors about it, was the day that I had my operation. Sometimes it’s worse than others. It can vary between just a little tickle, to a hacking cough that keeps him (and us) up at night.

It makes me feel like a terrible mother when I take him out and about and he’s coughing all the time. I feel like people look at me as if to say I should keep him at home wrapped up in the warm. But if I kept him in every time he had a cough, we would never leave the house.

It’s not like I don’t care, or that I haven’t taken him to the doctors. We’ve been to the doctors on average about once a month with the damn thing. Depending on who you see, he might get steroids, calpol, or sometimes antibiotics. He’s even been seen at the Children’s hospital. It’s not like I’m not doing my job.

We went back to the doctors today, and she suggested that it could be asthma, so has given him an inhaler to try. So far, he has been very good with it and doesn’t seem to mind me giving it to him.

It didn’t stop me having to bite my tongue when I was out at the shops today. Some random woman looked at him and said “Oh dear, that doesn’t sound good, is it croup?”

“No, it’s asthma.”

“Are you sure? It sounds croupy to me.”

“Yes, I’m sure, we’ve been to the doctors today and he’s got an inhaler!” At which point I turned around and walked off, muttering to my friend that random woman should have minded her own business!

How is it, that someone you have never seen before, and are not likely to see again can make you feel like a terrible mother in one fell swoop?