Thursday, October 7, 2010

recognition of a sort...

i got home this arvo from a lovely lunch in the city with irene to discover a large parcel sitting in my letterbox... i've been waiting for some soy wax candles and thought this was it... but no, it was my national bowel cancer screening kit!!!!!

okay, i've now been recognised 'officially' as an older person!!! due to my age i've been 'invited' to take part in the national bowel cancer screening program... according to the dept of health and ageing (note the word ageing) "research shows that the risk of developing bowel cancer rises significantly from the age of 50." this round of 'invitations' are targeting people who turned 55 or 65 between july 2008 and december 2010.

it's not mandatory, so i don't know if i'll take part - do i want to know that i have bowel cancer?? not really - not now - even if "bowel cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer in Australia, and around 80 Australians die each week from the disease. Bowel cancer can be treated successfully if detected in its early stages, but currently fewer than 40 per cent of bowel cancers are detected early."





and the kit - well, it contains 2 specimen collection sheets, 2 sampling sticks (in plastic ziplock bag), 2 small sampling tubes (in plastic ziplock bag), 2 labels, 2 large screwtop transport tubes and 1 reply paid envelope... you have to take 2 samples, no more than 2-3 days apart (but if it takes 3 days to get a 2nd sample i'd say you've got a problem anyway!!) and then you post the samples to a pathology service...




what else can i say - apart from i'm glad i don't work for australia post - wonder if the workers know they're 'dealing' with fecal matter in the mail - is that 'safe' - the amounts are minute and the samples are well packaged (but that's assuming participants follow the guidelines for packaging them properly - and that of course means people have to read the instructions) - and then i'm not aware aussie post is renowned for its 'gentle' handling of postage (let alone the weight of some items people post landing on the sample packages and perhaps, ummm, breaking the vials!!!!)

damn, i just don't quite qualify as a 'senior' yet - only 5 more years to go though - then at least  i'll get cheaper public transport fares (but fuck all else!!!!!)

and more bad news on the (extended) family front - i just got a phone call from me mother - her lifelong friend eileen's daughter's partner has been receiving 'experimental treatment' for leukemia for the last few months (at the alfred - now that certainly wouldn't have inspired confidence from me after my mother's dealings with them!!!) it was his last possible treatment though, i guess, i dunno - but they've just been told tonight that it hasn't worked and he only has weeks to live... a sad note to end on - i'm thinking of you margie & david...

2 comments:

Sailor Lily said...

my aunty Mavis had bowel cancer at about age 63. She had minimal treatment and continued to enjoy her life of bulimnia and abuse of prescription drugs! She lived to 81 and in that 'extra' time had a lover, annoyed lots of people and went to jazz clubs to dance. You may remeber my blog about her when she died. so who the fuck knows eh? It was lovely to see you today and enjoy one of lifes greatest taste trifectas- olives, dips and wine. thank-you.
lily.

Proud Womon said...

it was lovely to catch up with you too lily...

i remember your post about your aunty mavis - she sounds like she was an amazing, wonderfully unconventional womon!!!!

enjoy your evening...