Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Some news and I’m afraid it’s not good.

I'll start at the beginning, for quite a few months I've had an ulcer on the side of my tongue, my dentist was treating it believing it was caused by a rough tooth, he capped it, the ulcer wasn't going away and around Christmas it got really sore and swollen so he sent me to get it checked, I had an appointment on Monday 11th Feb, I went thinking I might get a prescription for steroids or something, I was told "It could be sinister, we'll do a biopsy, shall we do it now?"  So that was a bit of a shock at the time and traumatic going home with stitches in the side of my tongue and not what I expected, but I thought they were just being very cautious but on Monday 18th the news wasn't good.  I had a CT scan on Tuesday 19th and another long week waiting.  Tuesday 26th I was given more information and I am to have surgery, which will be around the end of March and hopefully it might be all the treatment I need, they can't say if I'll need chemo or radiotherapy until after the surgery.  

This week I’m on a tour of hospitals, on Monday I had an MRI scan at the Queen Margaret in Dunfermline, Tuesday a visit to Edinburgh's Western General to have my teeth checked, they are going to remove any that are not in good condition and that may include "over recovered" teeth, I had to ask what that meant, my four front teeth are crowns so that possibly included them.  I went in preparing myself with the thought that is if they take all my teeth out I’ll just have to smile with my eyes until I get new ones.  But I'm only going to lose one of my front ones and another two at the back, one at the top and one at the bottom.  Tomorrow I'm going to St John's in Livingston to have the teeth out and have a feeding tube inserted into my stomach since after surgery they don't want mince n' tatties going round my mouth. I'm going to have quite a few scars, they'll use a piece of skin and blood vessels from my left wrist for reconstruction after removing around a third of the right side of my tongue, then a wee piece of skin from my stomach to repair my wrist. Since breathing is good I will have a trachea tube for bit and a scar from below my right ear to the front of my throat.  

Apart from this I am in excellent health and running really well.  Thank’s to Kirsty at the By the Way for organising the Tyndrum weekend, it didn't totally take my mind off what is ahead of me but I was able to lock it away at the back of my mind and enjoy a wonderful run down the loch from Bein Glas to Inversnaid and back, and the company in the evening was second to none. At the weekend just gone, it was the Smokies 10, I knew I’d be close to my PB so I was still going to blast it, this was my twentieth time running Smokies 10, I’ve done it since 1992 and only missed it twice.  My PB was 1.19.36 set in 2003, ten years have passed but I didn’t doubt my ability.  I knocked over a minute off finishing 1.18.27.  Proof I’m fighting fit.

I’m going to have to withdraw from the 100km at Perth, I’ll probably still be in hospital and they tell me I won’t be recovered in time for the Fling.  This is going to wipe me out for a bit even if I don’t need chemo but  I’m not prepared to give up the WHW yet, I don’t have to make this decision just now, if there’s a slim chance I can still do it I’m hanging onto that goal.  I didn’t quite put my fingers in ears and shout La la la la when Pauline was suggesting that I want my tenth to be enjoyable and waiting a year won’t diminish my achievement.  We’ll see?

I've a big battle ahead of me, I am a fighter and I punch above my weight.  I have some wonderful people supporting me in my corner (if you’re reading this you’re one of them).  I've had some lovely emails, James reminding me I am my Mother’s daughter and Gail saying that I am still a Rampant Lion.  Damn right!  Cancer will knock me back on my heels but I’ll stay standing, it will scar me and have me spitting teeth but it will never take my roar!

44 comments:

Julie said...

Fiona, you're quite possibly the toughest, most-bloody-minded, take-on-anything-and-knock-it-senseless woman I know and if mental attitude counts for anything, this battle's over for cancer already. But in the meantime a wee virtual hug, a raising of a glass to you and stern words to your guardian Angels. Look forward to seeing you in Milngavie in June. xx

Peter Duggan said...

Hell, Fiona... just keep fighting the way you do best and don't ever let anything take your roar!

Love and best wishes
P XX

Bill Heirs said...

Ffs.. Fiona

Up beat as ever your a star... Am sure you will come out the other end even stronger... take care see you soon...

Bill H

Anonymous said...

Atta girl! Take care and look after yourself. X

Vicky said...

Fiona, you are the such a tough cookie and always seem to smile through anything. All this going on and you still run a PB. That shows you have got a fighting spirit, and I'm sure that spirit will bring you through and back to the WHW.
Take very good care of yourself.
Vicky x

Anonymous said...

That piccie at the top of your blog always makes me smile, what a cracker of a day that was! And location!! (Top of Jelly Baby Hill / Murdo's Mount, after BoO in WHW race, for anyone who might not recognise it). So I always kick off in a good frame of mind when reading what you have to say. You don't pull your punches on this one; but you're tough as nails, and we're all willing you to successfully repel this setback, and return to full strength and fitness asap. MtM xxx

KarenR said...

You'll beat this, yer a fighter and one determined lady. Sad this has come your way & will be thinking about you & your family. Stay strong and see you soon x

Silke said...

O no Fiona, that sounds like a tough road ahead. But you are a fighter indeed. So if you can't get your 10th Goblet this year because you are still recovering, you will get it next year! No doubt about it. As soon as I'm home tomorrow I will fill my goblet to the brim and toast to your strength and fighting spirit. Silke

Christine & Jim said...

Jim & Christine
You have come out on top of every life challenge that has come your way and we are sure that the true grit that you have within you will allow you to do that again. Looking forward to reading your 10th WHW Race blog whether it be this year or next. All the very best xxx

Anonymous said...

As always Fiona, your fighting spirit amazes and inspires me and no doubt many others. If anyone can kick this one into touch its you. Keep on keeping on,
Lorna Maclean xx

run and be mum said...

Fiona
I have only seen you from a distance and have only e-mailed you once but from that small contact I know you are a deep digger. The same grit that got you through the ultras and the same care that meant you e-mailed me encouragement will see you through and one day I will introduce myself to you at the beginning of an ultra race. Will be thinking about you a lot.
Andrea Williams

Deborah Macdonald said...

Darling Fiona, ditto all of the above. You humble us all with your spirit, tenacity and humour. I am certain you'll get the better of this. All love to you and your family (especially thinking of Pauline). Deborahx

The Sunday Adventure Club said...

Really sorry to hear that Fiona. You're as tough as they come so I'm sure you'll be back fighting fit sooner rather than later! Stay strong.
Richie

Keith Ainslie said...

I'm sure you'll fight it with your usual grit, determination and cheerfulness, thinking of you xx

lesleyh said...

You're the toughest cookie I've ever met. Battle on soldier you're very much in my thoughts.
Lesley xx

Anonymous said...

Fiona I have known you for a lot years now you are a true fighter a lion at heart you can do it you are so positive love takecare janettexx

Anonymous said...

Fiona I love reading your Blogs but not this one.All my positive vibes and thoughts are with you.
John b

Anonymous said...

You do everything with a smile, Fiona, and if it's a "crooked" smile for a wee while, it'll add even more character to someone who's got bags of it already! Big prayer going up for you - take care. IzzieB x

thebeiruttaxi said...

I'm not much good at the whole chin up thing but I'm thinking of you.

Ada said...

So sorry to hear your news. It's just another wee hurdle and you've crossed quite a few of them in your time. You'll conquer this too. Thinking of you and sending love and best wishes as you endure the necessary treatment. Ada xx

Anonymous said...

finoa,
I am really sorry to hear this news but you will conquer this with your usual determination and fighting spirit. See you in june if not before- come on we have a club to join girl. my thoughts are with you and your family.
Alyson

Helen said...

Good Luck Fiona, positive vibes winging your way xx

Catherine Wilson said...

Oh Fiona, So sorry you have to face this ordeal. Yet another challenge for you but I've no doubt at all you're up to it. Hold on to the possibility of the WHW - having a target to focus on will be a great help in getting you through it. Take all the support your friends and family are going to give you. I'll be thinking of y

Caroline said...

Sending positive thoughts your way. If anyone can fight this off you can, I'll be thinking of you x

Anonymous said...

Hey Fiona,
Its dot from Tesco, just want to say hang in there and keep your positive attitude. Thinking of you! Sending love.
Dot Xxx

Subversive Runner said...

Just read this Fi. You've been in a similar place before, woman and you won. You're the toughest person I know. Hands up, chin down.

Lots of love coming your way from down here in London.xxx

Anonymous said...

Hi fiona, its Natalie (tesco)

I had absolutely no idea!!

Youve fought this far, keep fighting.

Thinking of you

xxx

Keith Hughes said...

Fiona - just caught up with your news .. You put the Toughen into TTFU, kick the arse out of this .. See you in Milngavie in June - or before Keith xx

Anonymous said...

Hi Fiona,

sending you all the best wishes and all of us thinking about you

love Janet and Toddy xx

Lee Maclean said...

Not sure I'm much use to you Fi but I'm happy to corner for you anytime! ! Looking forward to shouting 'get a move on woman' in June as DW tries to catch you up ;-) Loads of love n stuff coming your way. Mrs Mac xxx

Anonymous said...

Hi Fiona, we are fb friends, but don't really know each other. I requested you after seeing your profile picture on another friends wall....I was like "who is that crazy woman, half way up a mountain, in a kilt with a devil fork!" It was you ! You astound me with your determination, make me laugh with your status updates and quite often, confuse the hell out of me with your Scottish lingo ;). If anyone can beat this, its you. You go get that devil fork of yours and shove it right up the big c's behind ! Or whatever you call it up north ;) xx mel James

Yak Hunter said...

Just read your blog. What a shock! Love your blogs and your updates on fb and your photos and your escapades. I'm wishing you the very best for the challenges ahead. x

Anonymous said...

O Mo Ghraigh! Xxxxxxx

AlanC said...

Sorry you're having to go through this. Stay strong and look forward to seeing you on the trail soon.

Chris Carver said...

Hi Fiona

I'm sure you know what I've got to say ... so I'll say something different:

'once a runner, always a runner'

PS ... thinking of you lots (and sending positive thoughts north from Yorkshire).

Davie said...

One of life's great pleasures was meeting and getting to know you, always seeing your smiling face at races and learning of your previous problems and how you kicked the ass of Ill health.
You just need to do it again . Doddle. My thoughts are with you.

Shi said...

So sorry to read your news, Fiona. Of all the people I know, you have the most tenacity and determination and you will beat this. Sending you lots of love, Shirley and Jon xx

Shirley Colquhoun said...

Sorry, that last message was from Shirley, not "Shi "

Martin Butcher said...

Hi Fiona,just want to say I am thinking of you and send you all my best wishes,you are inspiration to everyone at the harriers and I know we will all be saying a prayer for you x

Robert Kinnaird said...

There is only one winner when anyone or anything takes you on Fiona and that is you. You always were, are and forever will be a winner Fiona.

Sending you big hugs and wishing you a speedy recovery. xx

Hooves of Destiny said...

You're a real inspirational and I enjoy reading your blog :)

I have a friend who went through what you're about to and she is super fit and healthy now. Sounds like things have been caught in plenty time and with an iron will like yours the 'C' has nae chance!!

Good luck :)

Scott said...

I read about your PB then I caught up with your blog, both entries. You continue to be an inspiration to so many of us Fiona, go kick its arse, get over the trough as you always do and see you smiling on the trails again soon.

Soph Notley Wells said...

Fiona, you are such a fighter. I wish I had a tenth of your gusto, good luck. Soph xx

karinsmiles said...

I know no-one better equipped to meet every challenge life throws at them, but I'm sorry to hear this one has come your way. Thinking of you and sending you a big hug and loads of love.