Monday, May 19, 2008

One day to go!

I'll be admitted tomorrow, with the RP taking place around 10:00am/11:00am. Mr.D.M. Quinlan, the surgeon, has four scoping procedures to carry out first, then I'm up.

The thought is still pretty scary. I go through low level 'panic' periods daily. Mornings are best, when I'm a bit 'gung-ho', but later on, it goes the other way. I'm usually fairly ok in the evening. Bearing this in mind, I'm glad it's happening in th morning.

For the past while, I've been getting cards, phone calls, emails and pats on the shoulder from clubmates and others in the athletic fraternity, friends and acquaintences. these are most heartening and it's uplifting to know that so many are rooting for me.

I took my last run last night, going out with the Ladies Meet & Train group. After that it was down to mowing the lawn. After that I got the "mads" and started tackling the ivy growing up our side wall. It has been threatening to take over the planet, and I'd decided to cut it back. After all, I'm certainly not going to be going up a ladder for the foreseeable future. I'm less likely to be lifting a heavy wooden ladder. At least now it's a little bit under control - I only went at the sides. The top is as bad as ever.

I hope to keep a detailed diary of my experiences in hospital and post it here, so that others might benefit from it.

So that's it for now. I'll be in hospital for 8 to 10 days, so there'll be no update until late May/early June.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Final Preparations

My wife has been gathering all the things I'll need for the past few weeks. I've also condescended to getting a few items. My normal packing strategy is to wait until the day before travelling, or even the day itself, and just dump everything in. [First thing always is to ensure the running gear is either packed or I'm wearing it. I always wear the shoes - you'll be able to get away with forgetting everything else!!]

This time things are a lot different. There'll be no running gear. I don't know when I'll need the gear (for serious running) again. Obviously I can wear some gear when I'm convalescing, but it's not the same.

Last night I finally started getting all the gear together. I won't be bringing too much as (obviously!) I won't be dressing for dinner! However I will be bringing, amongst other things, T-shirts - particularly "Brag Shirts", e.g. top 50 Ballycotton shirts. Now that'll be a barrell of laughs; guy wearing top 50 Ballycotton t-shirt shuffling down the corridoor, doing something like 5 minutes for 100m! Still every step taken is a step closer to recovery.

Today I had to phone the Urologist's reception, to see what the procedure is wrt admission etc., and to try to find out what time of day I'm scheduled. Well he's got four scoping procedures first and then me. Hearing that didn't really fill me with great desire - I nearly felt weak. I suppose it is becoming real. When I saw Mr. Q in mid March and later got the date for surgery, I felt that May 22nd was in the distant future. No more - it's upon me. I really do not want to go ahead with this, but I find the alternatives, as I've outlined in previous posts, are not attractive. The 'run away and do nothing' option sounds VERY attractive, but, over the horizon, in 5 - 15 years, the vista is then very bleak.

Thursday 22nd, the day of the op., I'd normally be heading to Ballyandreen, a townland near Ballycotton, for the first of the Ballycotton 5 Summer Series. I look forward to this series all year. Not so this year.

Thursday week would have been my 22nd consecutive participation in this race. I've done 83 in the series all told. Hopefully I'll be able to get around the final race of the 2008 series, the Ballycotton 5, on the fourth Thursday in August. I don't care if I have to walk it!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Nine Days to Go! .......but who's counting???

Monday May 12th
Been a while since I updated the blog....lots of things on my mind ..and my to do list! Meantime I've been running nearly every day and have had several races, including Masters T&F Championships.

The first race was the Midleton 5 on Thursday May 1st. As I was competing in the Munster Master's T&F championships on Monday May 5th, with the Pfizer 6M on Thurs May8th, I decided just to use the Midleton race as a training run. However....two mile into the race, I had a "mad urge" to chase after one of my peers, who was approx. 300-400m further up the road. I finally caught up with him at the last bend, with just 300m to go. Boy did I pay for that effort. I was wrecked for the following few days.

On Monday 5th May, the Munster Masters T&F Championships were held in the CIT. I competed in the 800m, 1500m and 3000m, along with the javelin, allin in the M50 category. Competition was tough, with nearly all of the usual suspects there. I found it very hard to run - these days I have to concentrate very much, with only limited success, on staying relaxed. I just find it impossible not to tense up, but I continue to work on it. I was a bit disappointed to run so slowly, 3:06 for the 800, 5:59 for 1500 and 12:56 for 3000. Still I was there and I competed, which was my prime target. I also received many, many cards and good wishes. They are much appreciated.

On Thursday 8th, I ran in the Pfizer 6 - my first race as M55 and managed to come second in the category! It took a lot of hard work, but what a morale booster! Again I got more cards and well wishes.

Monday 12th - stress starting to build again. Weather is fabulous. It's hard to think of this good weather, being symptomless and having to go in for major surgery.