Stephen Norwood - Cancer - Recovery 1

Stephen Norwood banner


There was very little change in my routine for the first week of my recovery. The burns to my face, ear and throat were still very sore and food still was tasteless and unappealing. But by week two I was feeling stronger and gradually doing more. Episodes of nausea became further apart and gradually faded. I was eatin more foods, mashed potato, soups, chicken and my taste buds were starting to recover. I could look after myself during the day and Catherine was able to return to work. I also asked the hospital to reduce my oxycodone and they gave me a plan to wean myself off it over the next four weeks.

Stephen Norwood Recovering from cancer treatment

In week three I had my catheter removed and began managing my bladder for myself. I was already driving by now and going for walks of up to 2km. In spite of my very limited calorific intake during radiotherapy I had only lost about 6 or 7kg and I was now gradually putting this back. I was still very tired and quickly fatigued. An hour visiting my school to see my work colleagues left me needing to rest for about two days.

In week four I was suddenly hit by insomnia. A result of coming off the oxycodone was that immediately I just could not get to sleep. After about 36 hours I desperately demanded help from my GP before I murder anyone. I was then prescribed sleeping tablets and needed these for a couple of weeks while my body adjusted to the withdrawal of the oxycodone. I was frustrated that now I was taking another potentially addictive medicine when I had been so determined to come off the oxycodone quickly. Fortunately, within a few weeks I was able to settle back into a healthy sleep routine. By the end of May I was eating a normal diet and no longer needed my food supplements. The skin on my face, ear and the bald patch on the back on my head had lost it angry red appearance but was frequently and irritatingly itchy. Aqueous cream helped with this but Catherine often jokingly threatened to get me some scratch mitts as I frequently succumbed to the urge to frantically scratch.