Kate's Blog

Follow me if you will as I try to navigate through the ups and downs of my world.

I'm writing this blog to help me make sense of all that has happened - from my diagnosis with non-Hodgkins lymphoma while pregnant with my third child in May 2008
, through to my reflections on chaotic family life as I try to pick up the pieces of my life again.

The kids are so small, and I'm working hard to keep us all safe and to stay in remission.

Stay with me - it won't be all doom and gloom I promise!

Monday, 31 January 2011

Newest Venture

Now I'm trying to write a children's book... and although I think I've got a good idea, it's very difficult indeed. Every word counts and all that.

I'm also about to start another writing course at the university - this one taught by Jackie Kay, whose writing I LOVE. The problem is that I shall feel a little intimidated. Although it's so blimming hard to get out of the door at 5pm on a Thursday evening - complicated arrangements involving our babysitter doing tea and even bed with the children, which is a step forward from her usual come in and watch tv when kids are already in bed gig! - that I think that I'll be too fraught to be intimidated. Phew -that was a long sentence. Maybe I should make them shorter for Jackie Kay!

I do hope something helps to make our fortune soon - budgeting is tiring and dispiriting I find.

Thursday, 27 January 2011


This evening Hattie came roaring into the kitchen.
"I'm being a tiger", she announced.
"How scary!" I said.
"Well, I'm just pretendering Mummy", she said.
Lucky she told me.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011


Damn - I was being so good. And now I've just eaten a (big) ciabatta with goat's cheese and tomato and am just about to finish the last of the Christmas stollen with my cup of tea. I've been rushing around all morning having had only half a cup of coffee at 7am this morning. I know, I know.... I should eat breakfast. That might prevent me feeling ravenous by lunchtime.

The gym must be resumed without delay.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011


There's lots going on at the moment. I'm applying for a part-time teaching jobs (three days a week - heaven help our already more than crazy mornings!) I'm also hoping to do some private English tuition in the evenings - hence spending most of yesterday applying to a tutor agency. Very helpfully I've managed to lose my BA, MA and teacher training certificates so I'm having to re-apply for them to different universities which is quite a torturous process in itself.

And - listen to this. I think I'm going to start an online business. Scary? yes! I'm hoping to sell ethically traded lovely stuff. So - with a very tentative but excited mood upon me, I'm going to start building the steps I need to get this thing up and running. I'll let you know how it goes, in fact I might even blog a little about my experiences - and will put a link on here to my shiny new website when (ahem....) I actually have a shiny new website.

Needs must regarding all this energy being poured work-wise. I don't want to work full-time in teaching at the moment. Hattie is not yet at school, or even nursery. I'm only just two years in remission and teaching secondary school English to hordes of teenagers certainly isn't easy. I want to at least wait until all the kids are in school - Hattie will start in September 2012, which isn't so long away. And if I can develop a few more strings to my bow in terms of earning possibility, maybe we will be able to at the very least continue to pay the mortgage and put food on the table which is proving difficult at the moment.

This morning I've spent the whole time in the hospital with Ed who had banged his head hard at school yesterday. As you know Ed has haemophilia so a knock on the head can be very serious. I gave him treatment last night but this morning he was still complaining of having a headache. So off we went with Hattie in tow. He had another dose and a check-up and then arrived back to school in time for lunch. And I'm still feeling grotty - in fact a bit worse than that now. And it's bloody difficult coping with the kids feeling like this. Ho Hum.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011


I'm having a frustrating day today. I've got dreadful sinisitis which makes me feel as if my head is in a wooly vice (if such a thing should exist) and that is just to start with.

I've waited in all morning with a cooped up toddler for a boiler maintenance person to come and give our boiler a service.

From 8am till 1pm.

Did he (am assuming it would be a 'he') turn up? No. When I rang they said that they had no record of an appointment. When I explained that I had written the appointment on the calendar in December while speaking on the phone to their company, the woman confessed that mine was the third call today complaining about appointments not being kept. Hmmmm.

I can't write.

This is a boring post.

Hattie didn't want her afternoon sleep on account of having done nothing all morning but wait for the gas man. So now she's driving me mad too.

And I have a headache. And a face ache. And I have my check-up at the hospital tomorrow - for which I'd like to be feeling fighting fit. Pyschologically that helps with walking past the wig stand and smelling THAT hospital smell which makes me want to run for the hills.

Ok - shouldn't have posted. Am going to make some tea.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Hello 2011

Today the kids are back at school and Rog is back at work. Hattie is asleep and the house is peaceful. I've just finished taking down the Christmas decorations and wrapping them up for another year. And this year I'm not putting them away with dread in my heart as to whether I'll be around to unwrap them again next year.

I'm not out of the woods yet as far as my cancer returning is concerned. I'm only two years in remission and I've got to get to five. But somehow, for some reason that doesn't feel as scary as it did. I guess that time does heal, and that the dreadful truly harrowing year following Harriet's birth is fading from the foremost of my memory. I'm living with some distressing, and what I'm scared to think might be permanent, long-term side effect of the chemotherapy - but I'm alive.

I've a hospital check-up appointment next week: always anxiety provoking at the best of times, but I'm looking and feeling well (apart from that pesky sinusitis which often hovers around) and it was gratifying to hear at the New Year party how many people genuinely complimented me as to how healthy I was looking. In fact I have a suspicion that dancing until 3am might have been what sparked off the sinusitis. A far cry from the way I said goodbye to 2008, thank heavens.

And new year's resolutions? Pilates. And writing. Quite a good mix actually, I think.