Stories.

Going to the hospital every day is a bit of a drag. There are things I would much rather be doing but, I am enjoying hearing so many stories. Taxi drivers share their own tales of ill health, things about their family, careers and how they ended up doing what they are doing.

I loved hearing about the joiner from Manchester City Council’s own recovery from stroke and his journey regaining his speech over the course of a year. He shared frustrations with people finishing his sentences for him while fitting me a grab rail in the bathroom. We bonded over not giving up on rehabilitation but having to be patient. I told him I didn’t think I’d need to use the rail for too long, but being able to stand in the shower would be huge progress from where I’d been in December and January.

I get to talk to other patients too, some I now speak to every day. I’ve been able to offer reassurance on a first day that wearing the radiotherapy mask really does get easier. Some are tired of appointments, side effects. Others are hopeful, offering high praise for their consultants. Either way, they turn up.

At the core of all these stories is the unpredictable nature of life. That’s what makes it interesting, fun and rewarding. It’s also what makes it difficult at times.

I’m working on an MBA assignment this week so this post is a bit shorter than usual. My hair has just started coming out in week three of radiotherapy/chemo. There’s just something about losing hair that is unsettling despite knowing it will happen.  I’m now sporting some quite big bald patches and if I can get agreement from the radiotherapists (due to the effect on the fitting of the mask) I’m thinking of going for the full head shave.


I’m been doing a bit of painting recently and the video below captures the evolution of a painting I’ve been working on. Not quite finished yet but almost.



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5 Comments

  1. Sue H
    March 1, 2017 / 11:20 am

    My mum completely rocked her bald head, such a beautiful shape. And it gave her the opportunity ultimately to utterly rock elfin cuts she never would’ve dared try, once it started growing back. I still wish she’d go that short again, it really suited her. Her shave was sad for her though, I hung on the phone throughout her sobs (I was at uni and had an exam) with my sister doing the deed at the other end. Thinking of you. X

    • Sarah Gaffney
      March 6, 2017 / 7:57 am

      Sorry I’ve only just spotted this comment Sue. Thanks for sharing this story about your mum – it’s really moving. I can understand her finding shaving her head emotional. She sounds like a strong woman wearing her baldness with pride. xx

  2. Gemma Wood
    February 28, 2017 / 2:24 pm

    I really like your painting, I like that you are brave enough to cover and rethink the the whole image over and over again. You have picked the right season/trend for a shave, you will look awesome!

    • Sarah Gaffney
      March 6, 2017 / 7:59 am

      Thanks Gemma. My paintings do generally change quite a bit over time… I like changing my mind 🙂

  3. Kate C
    February 23, 2017 / 4:46 pm

    Sounds like the kind of occasion for girlies, make-up treats, take-away food and clippers XxXx

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