I haven’t updated my blog in a while as I have been busy collecting my thoughts from a busy few weeks while planning some exciting future endeavours.
The other consequence of having been so busy is that I’m suffering more from fatigue at the moment, meaning that sustained concentration can become challenging, but I digress…
This past month has been especially eventful, productive, and exciting. I have decided to detail a summary of my experiences in a short series of posts.
I had the immense pleasure of attending The London Football Awards and delivering a speech about my special day with Willow in August last year. The difference in how I feel mentally and physically now compared to then is astonishing to me when I look back. I love football so I was in heaven at such a grand event surrounded by such recognisable faces.
Football has always been a great escape to me at times when I felt like a zombie thanks to neurological issues and side effects from epilepsy medication. My special day really helped to maintain my sanity and make me smile while I was still loaded up on a cocktail of rather potent sedatives so I was more than happy to do all I could as a massive thank you to Willow!
I’m on next to no medication now (I stay on a small amount of anticonvulsants just in case), so I was able to stay awake during my speech. I was having one of my good days that day so I felt quite alert for most of the evening. This was just as well as I was delighted my Mum was able to attend and I wanted to make her proud.
Life deals some cruel blows at times, my Mum was diagnosed with oesophogeal cancer when I decided to discontinue my treatment almost a year and a half ago now. I didn’t mention any of this at the event but we went through some dark times together so the evening was extra special in many ways. A real celebration and thankfulness for better days after the uncertainty of life had become tangible and more apparent.
There was no disease, let alone cancer, in my family before all this happened. It is certainly a metabolic disease in our individual cases but I won’t go into that. All I will say is that the link between prolonged use of alendronic acid to treat osteoperosis and oesophogeal cancer diagnosis a few years down the line is more common than you may realise. (http://www.bmj.com/content/341/BMJ.c4444.full)
I keep straying from the main subject, bad habit! It must be said that Willow is a tremendous charity because special moments are precious, priceless sparkles of light through bleak, dark moments. I could not emphasise this point enough.
A massive highlight had to be meeting Arsène Wenger again. Arsène was a real gentleman and took time to wish me the best and pose for pictures.
I also met Harry Kane who to my disgust as a huge Arsenal fan was very pleasant chat to and refreshingly humble. I begrudgingly admit that he’s a talented individual so I will cheer him for England and continue to boo him for Spurs.
Willow Foundation really did put on a tremendous event, Bob Wilson and his wife Megs should be very proud. £175,000 was raised on the night and I was truly over the moon to hear that. The evening was another very special day for me and my Mum and to top it off I met some thoroughly decent individuals who support Willow Foundation. 🙂
My special day was simply unforgettable and I feel it certainly gave me a real lift at the perfect time. I’m so thankful for these opportunities and special days and I’m sure many other young adults with serious illnesses will benefit hugely from these days in future thanks to the tireless, passionate work by Bob, Megs, and everyone at Willow Foundation.
In my next post I will briefly discuss my trip to Westminster and what it could mean for myself and others with brain cancer…