August 2nd, 2016

I cut my hair!

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www.cocoandme.com - Tamami with new shorthair cut! - Coco&Me blog

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So!
Yesterday my lovely hairdresser friend Ms.M cut my hair short for me! Thank you so much Ms.M!
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This is in preparation for the chemo. In the hope of keeping as much hair as possible I’ll be wearing a ‘cold-cap’ which cools the scalp during chemotherapy to reduce the amount of drugs reaching the hair follicles. I’ll be wearing it before during & after the treatment & apparently it’s better to have short hair for it. Also, if hair does fall out it’ll be less dramatic when it’s shorter hair…!
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Hairdresser Ms.M chopped off 40cm!
I decided to send the chopped off hair to a hair-donation charity called The Little Princess Trust. It’s a children’s cancer charity that supply real hair wigs to children suffering with cancer.
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Initially I was thinking of selling my hair but Ms.C’s comment on this blog about her teenage daughter donating her hair so willingly without wanting anything in return has inspired me to do the same. I also can not shake off a scene I saw of a little girl with bad hair loss innocently playing by the toys at the Great Ormond Street Hospital that I visited 2 weeks ago for my genetics test. Maybe my un-dyed Japanese hair can be of use to someone somewhere. Maybe in this way I can repay, even a little bit in a roundabout way towards the kindness given to me by so many people.
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Today is going to be a busy day.
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At 11 I will be getting my heart scanned. Apparently the treatments are quite harsh for the heart & so they want to see it beforehand I suppose. Then at 11.45 I’ll meet the oncologist. 1.30pm I’ll be admitted to the hospital to fit the portacath which was supposed to be done last Thursday but was prosponed because the anaesthetist was suddenly unavailable at the last minute! They say the surgery will be at 4pm. By around 7pm I should be fully awake & ready to be discharged. Mr.D will come collect me after his work & we’ll go home by cab…
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Next biggie date is going to be the chemo starting this Thursday…!

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So far this illness thing is believe it or not keeping me very busy! One would think that quitting work will bring about easy-going bliss
but oh no-no it’s appointments after appointments to keep up with! On top of the appointments – I’ve been super busy reading up on breast cancer. Knowledge is power right? The more I know the better. I feel less scared & I feel more in control of the situation, I’m never going to let it get on top of me! Graaah! :)
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T xx
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July 27th, 2016

Update:

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I just want to quickly update you.
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I’m just so relieved & happy! (within the given situation…!)
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Yesterday, I was given a piece of good news I had been praying & praying & praying for.

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My breast cancer hadn’t spread anywhere else!!!!
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And this is for sure with complete certainty after the CT scan & whole body bone scan!
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I’m SO relieved…
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Now that the diagnostic stuff is over, it’s all a matter of onwards & upwards with treatments.
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The ‘next-to-do’ is to go in to hospital again tomorrow to implant a device called a ‘port’ under the skin on my upper chest, which connects to a large vein near the heart. This will be used as the access point for pumping in the upcoming chemo meds. I was a bit surprised that it’ll be another general anaesthetic op, & that there will be a noticeable bump but this is like nothing for me & I welcome every step that needs to be taken to get better!
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Huh, tubed up with implanted access port… I also already had two lots of radioactive dye injected too. I feel like a robot in the making! Tamami ver.1.2…?? Lol… Lol… Lol… due for completion in December 2017…!?
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t xx

July 8th, 2016

Bye bye Broadway market

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It pains me to write this.
I don’t even know how to start, as I had no idea that I was to write this message. So I guess I’ll cut straight to the point.
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I have bad news.
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Just last week, I was diagnosed with breast cancer.
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I can just imagine that this news must come as a shock to you, as it obviously did with me and my family..

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I have a lump on my right breast, I had it checked out by mammogram, ultrasound scan, biopsy and a MRI scan. (In fact, I had the first three of these tests done twice! – I’ll tell you more about it in another post.) On the first day of the tests already, the consultant told me that I have breast cancer. The consultant was confident that it hadn’t spread to the nearby lymph nodes though, to which words I will hang on to.

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So please don’t worry for me. The tumour is actually not big either and is treatable, and the prospect is very good. The surgery is already scheduled for next Monday! Which is a huge relief as I can’t wait to get rid of it!

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Nevertheless, this turn of events has changed certain things.

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I am disappointed to say the least to tell you that I will no longer do the market.
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The most sensible thing for me to do is take better care of myself. This means, live with less stress, live life slowly and have time to cook well, eat well, and spend quality time with my family. The last thing I want is to push my body to tiredness while I go through the expected treatments ahead.
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This unexpected news comes actually comes at the worst possible timing.
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I was in the middle of planning a Coco&Me outlet…!
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My good friend Ms.V asked me to move in to her shop in St Paul’s and co-exist. In 2 to 3 months from now, I would have had my cakes across 4 metres of window display – in the middle of the city, literally a few minutes walk from the Millennium Bridge and St Paul’s Cathedral. My cakes would have been available all week. It would have been the perfect next phase for Coco&Me, which I’m sure would have opened many new amazing opportunities. I am in shock myself to change my plans with the shop like this. I am also very sorry to Ms.V for suddenly exiting on her.
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I am so gutted that I am posting this sad news today. The next post on this blog would have been about the most happy announcement of Coco&Me shop opening. I wrote a draft-version of that happy news ages ago, and I couldn’t wait to roll out the news to the whole world. – The only reason why I hadn’t told you any sooner was because I was awaiting signing.
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To my dearest customers who have supported me during all those years at the marketthank you for being so kind to me, and I am so sorry that I had to disappear from the scene so abruptly like this. Many of you have purchased cakes and chocolates frequently, and I loved that it was like a routine to see you every week. I loved chatting to you all, and I loved that we’d notice each other missing if that routine is broken even by a week.
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I hope you understand and agree that I have taken the right course of action to solely concentrate on getting better, rather than juggling it with work. It would be impossible to do it hand-in-hand anyway as I will be going to radiotherapy and possibly chemotherapy everyday for a while. I have enjoyed my time at Broadway Market with you tremendously over the almost 11 years that I was there. It has been such a big part of my life!! I am already missing you all! But like I said before, please don’t worry for me, you know that I’m a trouper right? :-) I can put up hell of a fight! Grahh~!
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To my dearest blog-readersas for this blog, I will continue to write, so no worries there! :)
I have always felt comfort from the great support you have given me with the comments you leave! How can I give up on that! ;-)
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Add to that, I am thinking of using this blog as a food diary to motivate me to eat well. Some of you might be surprised as to why I am revealing my illness so frankly, but, like I wrote ages ago here, I hate keeping secrets, or to cherry-pick who to tell, as once, I had an experience of a good friend doing that to me and I was hurt when she said it’s because she didn’t want to ‘jinx’ it! Besides, breast cancer isn’t a taboo to tell. Hopefully, by documenting mine on the world-wide-web, I can ramp up awareness and more women check themselves regularly? 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer. I never knew that for example, and I wished somebody told me before, then I would’ve checked myself more regularly!
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Those who know me know that I eat healthily despite my job surrounded by cakes and chocolates, but ever since I have been diagnosed, I have been eating strictly healthily to give myself the best possible chance. I can document that too, and share my knowledge on my food choices.
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Again, thank you to all those who have supported my Coco&Me stall for all those years!!!!
I have enjoyed my time at Broadway Market absolutely tremendously over the almost 11 years (!) that I was there. :) And I will miss it dearly (I already do!) as it has been such a big part of my life!
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With love, t xxx

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