Friday, 12 October 2012


OD and I went to meet the colorectal surgeon, Mr C yesterday. We had to make the journey that is his daily commute. Frankly, I don't know how he can face the journey EVERY day (two trains and a bus). We were frightfully early, and went to the canteen to have lunch. OD used to be a senior manager in this hospital, and it was entertaining watching him "holding court" with a variety of consultants. He'd left the job 6 months ago, but they were still moaning about this , that and the other- NHS reforms, waiting times, unsafe understaffed departments etc. I kept wanting to say..."Err...he doesn't work here anymore, and he has cancer...go away".

We then saw the surgeon and the cancer nurse specialist. The news was reasonable, rectosigmoid tumour, early T3, no nodes or metastases. The surgeon seemed positive, and the aim is for a laparoscopic primary resection. He seemed almost blase about chemotherapy postoperatively. There was some debate about the date for surgery, Mr C was keen for Tuesday- there was a good anaesthetist on.."I'd want her to gas me..". OD has "a really important work meeting" on Wednesday. I think I was remarkably restrained- I didn't voice my opinion about priorities, but I did give him a very firm nudge. The decision has been made for Tuesday, but OD is in totally overdrive trying to organise stuff at work- we were barely out of pre-admission before he was on the phone scheduling additional meetings.

You always hear about how a life-changing event like cancer makes you re-evaluate your priorities. OD and I have had the argument before about priorities. I always thought I was dedicated to my job, but hell...if I was having a cancer op, I don't think I'd be worrying about work! Perhaps it's different when you're a leader of an organisation, particularly in a fairly new role. I guess he needs to lay foundations, to make sure that the "peasants" don't revolt when he's away. It'd be pretty rubbish to survive a war, to arrive back at the castle, and find someone else on your throne!

There's likely  a psychological need to keep control, and normality, and make long term plans. And being at work keeps him focused. I received some good advice to let "OD set the pace to allow him the best frame of mind for recovery". So I guess I'll just have to back off right now, and let him do things his own way. The control freak in me is NOT happy.

PS: Maybe he does have his priorities right- I wasn't expecting him home until 10pm because he had an all day event with the high and mighties of the organisation. But actually, it's 1930 and he's home. Full of beans, because it seems like all the loose ends are being tied at work and he got two rounds of applause! Frankly, if it means he's going to be focused and bring his A-game to the cancer playing field, I'll be happy.

PS2: Thanks for all the support guys.

1 comment:

  1. Glad to hear that all is well. Hope everything will turn out well on Tuesday and beyond.