Sunday, 25 October 2015

about The Insides of those Dingly Dangly Bits

In the past 6 months, after 4 years of treatment for Prostate Cancer which failed, my 63 year old husband and father to our 18 year old son was told that his treatment which comprised 7 weeks of radiotherapy followed up by 4 years of hormone therapy had failed.  The prognosis was dire. He had, when told of the treatment’s failure, a prognosis of less than a year to live.  Doctors like to be as optimistic as possible. I am a realistic pessimist.  I reckon that if my husband sees the next 3 months out, he’ll be fairly lucky.

He’d have been luckier still had he have actually said that he’d been having wee problems 2 years before he mentioned them to me let alone to anyone in the medical profession. Had he have done so, we would not be in the saddest and most miserable situation in which we currently find ourselves.

What IS it with men?  Anything to do with bottoms or wee seem to make them hide in their shells, snail like and go awfully quiet about such things.  Maybe the difference between males and females is the fact that some women have babies and after gynaecological examinations-a-plenty almost anyone can tell them to open their legs and they think “Oh, what the hell, practically everyone has seen my nether regions”, and they display them without too much thought or fear.  Not so with men. The dingly dangly bits are their own and they’re not for display unless the shower or in moments of high passion or at least something that some of them consider to be moments of high passion.

So, now, instead of just having something which probably started off as an enlarged prostate, my husband’s liver is affected as are his bones and the cancer has now spread to his bone marrow. He’s in almost constant pain and now the cancer has reached the skull which also comprises of bone and marrow, he’s fairly doo-lally tap, too.  Currently he’s in a hospice where his treatment has improved his physical condition, where the nursing and medical care have been nothing short of fantastic but, within the next couple of weeks he’s likely to be moved to a nursing home where, whilst I’m sure he’ll be treated with kindness, the medical practice just won’t be the same and he will once again physically deteriorate and the inevitable will occur.

I had been caring for him at home but a combination of stress and the ‘flu prevented me from continuing so to do.  I have a kid who’s in the middle of an important academic year and whose only relief is to go out and see his friends a great deal.  If this is how he deals with it, then fine, but if his studies suffer, then his father’s death will be in no small way a contribution to that disaster.

And me? Well, my ‘flu is getting worse rather than better. My stress levels are at all-time high. I’ve always suffered from insomnia and now I find myself drinking cups of tea on the patio at 4.00am nearly each morning.  It’s no great secret on Twitter that my husband and I have had our ups and downs and plenty of them but I do know that my husband doesn’t want to die, my son doesn’t want to be fatherless and that I shall be anything but a merry widow.

So, gents … if you find that you’re getting up in the night to wee several times more than you do usually, GO AND SEE YOUR DOCTOR. Don’t delay. If you do decide to delay, you and your family could find yourselves in the same awful position that my family are currently in. And I can tell you, categorically, this is NOT a good place to be.