There are many positive things I can tell you about. But, before I get too happy- clappy, be in no doubt, I still have a miserable, deadly, shitty brain tumour. That said, on with some good news…
Firstly, I appear to have come out of the surgery with a little bit more brain(iness) then before I went in. I seem to have more energy and improved speed of thought. Amazingly, I seem to be marginally better at squash, I think probably my reaction times are a tiny bit faster and I also played some shots that I haven’t done in years, it feels like the tumour was just getting in the way of some thoughts and also hiding some information (e.g. “gelatine” & certain squash shots). I was also spontaneously a bit better at Welsh and all round a bit sharper. Not super powers just rewind a few years to when I was a bit cleverer. I think I’d put a bit of my decline in brain sharpness down to ageing, turns out it was probably my squatting egg.
More great news. I touched on this before but I can now reveal a little more detail about my amazing “Scientific and Medical Advisory Board”. I am extremely lucky to have gathered a fantastic group of clever friends. If you think you might be on the my special SMAB you probably are. It includes:
Scientists – One who does clever genetics stuff so can, and does explain all the complicated things that I read about but don’t quite understand. Another who works in the Oncology department at a leading pharmaceutical company. A scientist/medic (who I haven’t seen since we played in the county youth band together in 1999) at Cancer Research UK who happens to know a fair few brain research people and has generously offered to set me up with the brain experts for a coffee next time I’m in Cambridge.
Doctors – a very helpful friend of a friend who is a Neuro-oncologist and a very old friend from college who I’ve reconnected with and happens to be a radiologist with a scary amount of experience looking at brain scans and a lot of brainy brain contacts. Ever so handy! Additionally I’ve found I have two old friends with contacts in the medical brain worlds in two other countries which is very nice. Firstly to double check that the NHS approach is consistent with or better than other countries and secondly in case something terribly excting is happening abroad that I should be getting involved with.
Clinical Trials people – two friends in this business, not a bad place to have helpful folk on the look out just in case something interesting pops up and/or I oneday need to understand a bit more about the process.