Marathon 24; London here we come…

Today Louise and I run our second London Marathon. We are very excited to be doing what thousands of runners dream of and what I personally grew up hoping to tackle. It’s a wonderful opportunity and we’ll savour every step we take.

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Me and my beautiful family

Sadly, though we are running it under different circumstances to those we originally envisaged. We received some bad news last week. A scan we had, to investigate the possibility of radiotherapy, has revealed growth in my disease. There’s a tumour on the scar tissue from my previous liver op.

There was also a hotspot in my bowel, but I had a sigmoidoscopy (camera up my bum to look at what’s left of my bowel) in the week and it looks clear. It’s not all bad and as I’m so fit our oncologist (the Indian Uncle I Never Knew I Had) is pursuing surgery, which I might not have had otherwise. There’s always a positive to be found!

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At the gym after my sigmoidoscopy 

It’s a been a bit of a shock, but we’re feeling very optimistic. It’s funny how in an instant I’m suddenly not bothered about my aching post-marathon legs and blisters. Also, we are very lucky to have had the scan, which showed up this tumour. PET CT scans are expensive and the last one I had was more than 3 years ago. This type of scan shows up everything and we could have discovered I was riddled with new tumours, so this is a great outcome. How blessed we are to have found this tumour at an operable stage!

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This is just a bump in the road. I’ve always been aware that something like this could happen, which is partly why I’ve worked so hard to get stronger and fitter. My fitness will help me recover from surgery and if my body burns off all my muscle as I mend, then I’ll just build myself up again.

We are positive, but it’s still put an entirely different complexion on this weekend. Not just that, but our whole lives too. The day after we get back from London I’ve not only got chemo, but an MRI scan as well. This scan will give my surgeon more detail ahead of my operation, so it’s very important. Hopefully soon after we’ll get a date for surgery.

Getting this news hasn’t altered my immediate plans. I’m feeling great and I’m not in any pain. I ran a marathon last weekend and I’m obviously running the London Marathon too. There’s plans to run another marathon in May and I will carry on for as long as I can until the surgery. Afterwards, I’m hoping to make as speedy a recovery as possible, so I can resume my fitness activities and challenges as quickly as possible. 

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In a way the London Marathon now serves a different purpose for us. Two or three weeks ago we were relishing the challenge of running our second London Marathon, it’s also one of the highlights of our fundraising year. We are still excited, but it now provides us with an opportunity to escape some of our worries. At least for a day.

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Not really my pace band, but couldn’t resist a joke

It’s going to be a blast just running London together. It’s a great race- as much a celebration of causes and humanity as running and there’s no one I’d rather share it with than my beautiful wife Louise. These last few years have been hard and the last couple of weeks, in particular, have been some of the toughest we’ve faced, but Louise continues to share her joy with us, her family. She keeps us afloat, both emotionally and practically. She does an amazing job of looking after the girls and I. It’s not easy, I’m in bed 3-4 days every fortnight recovering from chemo. But despite the difficulties we face an infectious smile is never far from her face.

She’s the love of my life. She’s clever, beautiful, kind and hard working and I can’t for the life of me see what she sees in me. Perhaps if I don’t tell her, she won’t notice.

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Love Louise!

The London Marathon is my third and final marathon of April. We are fundraising for three amazing cancer charities: Beating Bowel Cancer, Mummy’s Star and Rosemere Cancer Foundation. Thanks so much for all your donations so far.

Please click on the link to donate, any donations would be gratefully received:

www.virginmoneygiving.com/bensbowelmovements

I’m on facebook: facebook.com/6marathons6months

…and twitter too: @ChemoDadRuns

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