Focus, Finishing Chemo & Planning Surgery  

WORDS: Corrine Barraclough PHOTOGRAPHY Corrine Barraclough

CB’s BC Journal

I’ve lived in a little bubble this week. Having to put chemo on hold while I had COVID has given me laser-like focus on the finish line.

I’m just back from Gold Coast University Hospital, where I had an appointment with my oncologist, and have arrived back home feeling very spritely.

I’ve had some toothache so brought up the question of whether I can go to the dentist or should I wait? The response was, basically, “you’ll be finishing chemo in three weeks time, and everything else can wait until then”.

Once again, it’s that focus on the right priorities right now that keep coming through so clearly to me.

My tooth hurts, it’s not awful, and it feels very surreal to be able to say that in three more weeks I’ll get my life back.

That’s just three more weeks of blood tests every Wednesday, hospital appointment every Thursday and chemo treatment every Friday.

What am I going to do with all that time I have back?

I joke, of course, I can’t wait to get my life back, have a bit more energy, get to the gym, see my friends, be able to focus on kicking some work goals, the list is actually pretty long.

In three weeks I’ll be given the gift of time to be able to be me again.

We have just one more hurdle to consider, unfortunately… Surgery.

All this chemo will hopefully ensure that any seeding of cancer has been eradicated from my body, but that still leaves the tumours of breast cancer in my breast and lymph nodes. I’ve started researching surgery a little; accidentally slipped into Dr Google, and wish I hadn’t freaked myself out looking at scary images.

I know I’m in good hands with Dr Gault and his team at Robina.

I feel very blessed to be going through this on the Gold Coast; our hospitals and health system is nothing short of incredible.

I discussed surgery dates with my oncologist today and have already received an appointment booked at Robina Hospital to go through surgery plans.

I don’t take any of this for granted.

I know there are many people going through similar cancer experiences who don’t have the luxury of such good health systems, I’m so thankful to all who have taken such good care of me.

I tell you what, that weekly visit to C Block at Gold Coast University Hospital will soon keep a check on any self-pity you may be feeling. I saw some very sick people there today. I feel so incredibly thankful that I can walk in to my appointments, walk home, walk my little doggo and then sit at my laptop and be able to concentrate to string a sentence together.

Just for today I am so, so, SO f***ing thankful!

Chemo tomorrow… and soon we really will be counting down the last few! Woo to the hoo!

More next week,

Corrine x

Corrine was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer, which has spread to her lymph nodes. Her medical oncologists are pursuing a “cure”, which will begin with a six-month course of chemotherapy at Gold Coast University Hospital, followed by surgery at Robina Hospital and then likely further treatment. Corrine will be writing a weekly blog journaling her personal journey for Ocean Road Magazinethroughout her breast cancer.