My best friend, my daughter and me.

A day in my life

Like clockwork the cockerel crows at exactly 7am every morning. That is the cockerel on my 3 year old daughter’s alarm clock.

Generally David, my husband in a million, goes into to see our daughter and within seconds I smile as I hear giggles emanating from across the landing. Our daughter has known little else but the “normal” that is me having secondary breast cancer. She was only 11 months old when I was diagnosed. If I’m lucky she’ll pop into my bedroom for a quick kiss and cuddle before accompanying David downstairs to let Snoopy our Spaniel out.

Snoopy then comes to visit me and we get some quality time whilst downstairs our juicer is in full swing. I started juicing over two years ago and have recently upgraded our juicer to a mega “Greenstar” masticating juicer. These are quite expensive but I found one on eBay and asked family and friends if they would give me money for my birthday this year. The first juicer I had I funded by selling a lot of my books on Amazon – there’s always a way!
David makes our daughter a juice first, and then he starts on our Ginger Shot (how naughty a “shot” in the morning!) made with apple, lemon and a big hunk of ginger WHOA! It’s like a shot of espresso without the caffeine. This is anti-inflammatory and alkalising.

We’ve got into a routine of my shot and Matcha green tea being brought up to me in bed – this goes back to the days of Chemo where I was finding it difficult to get up. This routine has stuck, and I must say it’s very enjoyable!

Next I hop in the shower and use only green organic toiletries. Since my hair fell out with my initial Chemo in the UK I’ve kept  my hair short and “elfin” like so a quick rub with a towel and I’m done. I put a special concoction of coconut oil and Roman Chamomile on the areas of my skin where there have been tumours in the bone as I believe that the Aspergine from the Chamomile sinks into me with part of the coconut oil. I also use this as a hair styling product!

Before breakfast I have some of my supplements that need to be taken before food. My breakfast always begins with a fresh green juice, mainly green vegetables with a small apple. We get most of our green leafy vegetables from my Mum who is an avid gardener and who took it upon herself to grow loads of organic stuff for us all.

After the juice has been made I pour it into the blender and add some Spirulina powder, frozen wheatgrass juice, coconut water, some broccoli sprouts and fresh Aloe Vera.

My taste buds have definitely changed over the past two years and I just don’t need sweetness anymore. We usually make enough juice for me to have some later in the day and also David to have some too – although he refuses the aloe, it’s quite an acquired taste!

If I’m still hungry I might join David and India in a boiled egg – from organic chickens my Mum & Dad keep, or some porridge with quinoa.

After breakfast we are usually in a hurry to get out of the door, me to take our daughter to pre-school and David to get out to his office in our garden or off to site as he has a landscaping company. At break neck speed I remember to take my morning supplements plus my one daily Letrazole aromatase inhibitor tablet.

After dropping our daughter to pre-school I’ll come back home and do some exercise, either rebounding (on a mini-trampoline), take Snoopy out for a walk, go to a Pilates class or go on our cross trainer. I make sure I exercise every day, it’s good to get the oxygen flowing around my body and also to be strong in my muscles and bones.
After my diagnosis of Breast cancer that had spread to my bones we realised that my back pain was caused by a collapsed vertebra. I later had bone cement injected into this area. My back is very strong now but it’s not quite as straight as it was so I have make sure that my muscles around my core are doing their job. Exercise along with our unprocessed diet ensures that I am lean and not carrying too much fat which would aid in the production of oestrogen which my variation of cancer feeds on.

Sometimes I might fit in a coffee enema and soon I’ll be using an ozone machine for 30 minutes every day so I’ll have to fit that in somewhere too!

Before picking up our daughter from pre-school at lunchtime I will go into our office and either sort out things for our cottage in Norfolk which we rent out when we aren’t there, or I’ll write something for my blog verityslifestyle.com.

Lunch at the moment is usually homemade soup which I like to make in large quantities and freeze or if it’s just me I will make a green smoothie with lots of leafy green vegetables, coconut water and some organic frozen berries and raw cacao.

More supplements after lunch and my favourite tea that I make with Japanese Green Sencha & Jasmine pearls.

In the afternoon I might take our daughter to ballet class or to visit friends. If I’ve got appointments for therapies like acupuncture or going to the GP for my monthly Zoladex injection to switch my hormones off I’ll drop our daughter off at my parents where she loves to be outside helping in the garden whatever the weather.

If I’ve been on my feet a lot I will take 15 minutes to lay flat to allow my spine to relax.

Nowadays I don’t need any pain relief, David tells me I have a high pain threshold but on the whole I don’t get any pain. I know I’m lucky and I don’t take it for granted.

I have treatment of Herceptin and Zometa (a bone strengthening drug) every 3 weeks, generally a nurse visits me at home to do this and since having a portacath fitted earlier this year having IV needles put in is a doddle. Every so often I have to visit my oncologist at The Royal Marsden in London. I believe I’ve got one of the best specialists in secondary breast cancer in the world in my team.

I always cook a fresh supper for our daughter; it’s the way I was brought up too.
After she’s had her bath and we’ve put her to bed I’ll start cooking supper for myself and David. Sometimes I’m organised and know exactly what I’m cooking, otherwise I freestyle it with what’s fresh in the fridge. That’s often when I come up with new recipes for my blog. If I have, then after supper I’ll write down the recipe and then if there’s some leftover I’ll plan to photograph it the next day.

David usually goes back out to the office after supper,  he’s running his own business and as he’s with me and my daughter more in the morning he then makes up for it later in the evening. We don’t watch TV anymore, we stopped just after my diagnosis,  it all just seemed so pointless. We sometimes watch a DVD but couldn’t watch TV as our set is so old it can’t receive digital!

I might chat to friends on the phone or facebook, write emails then off to bed with a cup of chamomile tea to read a book, usually by this time it’s an easy read novel or sometimes it’s one of the myriad of health and anti-cancer books I have.

I try to get my 8 hours rest every night, aided by a natural sleep remedy as sleep, good quality sleep is so important for me.

I don’t spend my day thinking “I have cancer” I focus on the positive things I do have and can do and try and inspire others to do the same and take control of their health and the way they live their lives.

I’ve been told that secondary cancer can’t be cured; only managed.

I’ve now come across many people who defy the so-called “statistics” and if my bossy, stubborn nature has got anything to do with it then I’ll be one of them.

In fact, no, I AM one of them.

 

Comments
5 Responses to “A day in my life”
  1. Davina says:

    Great post – very inspirational !

    Can you share your source for your Matcha tea – oh, and and the Japanese Green Sencha with Jasmine Pearls – sounds lovely :)

    • verity says:

      Davina, thanks for your lovely words!
      The Matcha tea we use is DoMatcha ceremonial matcha tea
      Here’s an informative but not terribly exciting video on how to make it (the whisks are usually available with the tea and are invaluable)
      The Japanese Sencha and jasmine pearls are from Orange Pekoe in Barnes, London
      I often have a few ready made bags of Sencha with mint or lemon from Jacksons (available most supermarkets) in my handbag and car just in case!
      Hope this helps?
      X

  2. Fiona says:

    Hi Verity,
    I really enjoyed reading your post and related to your story in so many ways. You’re such a strong and positive person I’m sure so many people will find inspiration from you. I was diagnosed with cancer in 2008 but was lucky to make a full recovery. Now I cherish every moment of life and try to eat as healthy as I can most of the time! I too love matcha and its wonderful health benefits. I buy organic premium and ceremonial matcha online from the Koyumatcha company (http://koyumatcha.com/wp/shop/buy-matcha-green-tea/). They also sell the utensils used to make the prefect cup of matcha ;0).
    Have you ever eaten lotus root?

  3. Nicola Marriott says:

    Hi Verity, a friend who has stayed at your cottage & said you were very inspirational, pointed me in your direction. I too was diagnosed with breast cancer that had spread to my vertebrae on November 28th 2012, a day before my youngest baby turned one. It has been (& still is) a terrible shock. Despite this shock I am utterly determined, like you, to defy all odds. I have so much to live for. We’ve already become statistical anomalies by being diagnosed so young (I was 40) so must just continue as we mean to go on. As my wonderful acupuncturist said to me ‘I think you’re going to raise some eyebrows at The Marsden’ & I intend to do just that! I too am seeing a great guy at The Marsden – Prof Smith, can I be inquisitive & ask if that’s who you are under?

    Thanks, Nikki x

    • verity says:

      Hi Nikki
      Brilliant attitude, keep it going. I say that 98% of the time I’m really upbeat but allow myself to feel really pants for the other two percent!
      This “trend” of the beast cancer growing and metastasising during pregnancy is frightening, however there is hope.
      I think that us being at The Marsden is great, they are a centre of excellence. However as you know that’s just part of our ongoing integrative treatment.
      My oncologist is Prof Stephen Johnston, he specialises in secondary breast cancer, we love him!
      I was originally referred to Prof Smith (but saw his interest was in primary breast cancer)
      Keep up the good work, if you want to email me privately please do, I’m an old hand at this now! 2 1/2 years from DX.
      Verity x
      Ps May I ask what your hormone status is?
      Pps perhaps we will see each other at the Marsden one day!?

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