Rosemary tonic anyone?

20150519_081733As I was writing a thank you card this morning I flipped it over and read the info on the back because I liked the image on the front and imagine my surprise when a recipe for Rosemary Tonic was written there. Apparently you mix it with other ingredients- in this recipe cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger and red wine, and hey presto 7 days later you have a tonic that should lift your spirits.

Googling Rosemary Ton20150519_081751ic I find that it is apparently also used to promote hair growth, so if I should need that in the future months I’ll remember that. Not the one with the red wine you understand, but some concoction with Rosemary steeped in boiling water and then drained. It’s meant to smell wonderful and be very good as a general conditioner which makes your hair shine. I may try it just for the hell of it. Why not, live a little.

Yesterday was actually an ok day. We said our final goodbyes to my Father in Law and his funeral service went well. It’s always a sad occasion but when someone has been coping with a life limiting illness for a few years there is an element of grace that makes you think about the ending of life as a blessing of some sorts.

One of the stories that came up during his eulogy was that as the main cook in the house, my Father in Law seemed to have his very own initiation ceremony that he used to put into action whenever one of his three sons brought home a ‘young lady’. Essentially he cooked an offal based meal. I was ‘lucky’ enough to be given stuffed hearts. Yes, you read that right, when meeting someone for the very first time you cook stuffed hearts for them. If that’s not a metaphor for something then I don’t know what is.

One of my Sister in Laws recounts that she was given liver casserole and not being used to it (she’s Flemish- someone has to be 😉 ) she ate it thinking that it was fairly well cooked beef casserole. As they were driving home the following day, she asked my Brother in Law what the meat was and he translated as best he could and probably used some sign language. Viviane worked out what she’d eaten, asked for the car to be stopped immediately and was promptly sick.

Surely in both cases a regular roast chicken would be kinder? Hey ho.

Following the funeral we headed back home and went to the hospital for our appointment with the Consultant Oncologist. I’m not sure that someone who has such gorgeous hair should be an Oncologist really (Note to Self: Ask her about Rosemary Tonic?) but I’ll forgive her for that. She is lovely and was clear and thorough in her description of my progress so far and the options that lie ahead of us. Also the ways in which the decisions that we need to make in the coming weeks will be assisted by further test results and so on. The long and the short of it is that my Oncotype DX test- the one that helps to determine whether my particular cancer and set of circumstances would be receptive to Chemotherapy- will give us some level of indication in about three weeks. If you’re feeling really geeky, you can read more about it by clicking here http://www.breastcancer.org/symptoms/testing/types/oncotype_dx

Here’s just a bit of the text for you speed readers with no time interest medical appetite

The Oncotype DX test is a genomic test that analyzes the activity of a group of genes that can affect how a cancer is likely to behave and respond to treatment. The Oncotype DX is used in two ways:

  • to help doctors figure out a woman’s risk of early-stage, oestrogen-receptor-positive breast cancer coming back (recurrence), as well as how likely she is to benefit from chemotherapy after breast cancer surgery
  • to help doctors figure out a woman’s risk of DCIS (ductal carcinoma in situ) coming back (recurrence) and/or the risk of a new invasive cancer developing in the same breast, as well as how likely she is to benefit from radiation therapy after DCIS surgery

So, the Oncotype DX test is both a prognostic test, since it provides more information about how likely (or unlikely) the breast cancer is to come back, and a predictive test, since it predicts the likelihood of benefit from chemotherapy or radiation therapy treatment. Studies have shown that Oncotype DX is useful for both purposes.

So it’s the waiting game again. We’re determined however not to spend the next three weeks driving ourselves crazy with ‘what if’s’ and feeling frustrated about the time that feels a little wasted when we’d rather be doing something, anything and getting started. That’s the core of the issue really, we don’t yet know where this next bit is going to start from and we won’t know until the begining of June. So it’s time for more healing, resting and getting fit for whatevs obvs!

In the meantime, I may well make vats of #TeamPositive branded Rosemary Tonic……….watch this (advertising) space.

 

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