4am. That’s an hour of the night that really doesn’t impinge upon my consciousness. I like to be wrapped cosily inside a totally unmemorable dream at 4am. I appreciate that there are folks who have to function at that time of the night or for whom 4am means breakfast but me? Well, I generally only see that hour when there’s a low spring tide to catch in a Shetland mid-summer and, of course, being Shetland, the sun has barely dimmed. But 4am in an Edinburgh November is a cold, dark moment and the only place to be is bed. So you’ll understand that it was something of a shock to find myself setting the alarm for such a secret time last Friday, and sneaking along to the kitchen for toast and tablets. Yes, this is when the chemo started. Ten steroid tablets (that’s right – 10) to be swallowed with food at 4am. Admittedly they were only very small tablets – perhaps they wouldn’t work if they were scrunched up into one big one, surface area:volume ratios and all that – but somehow it didn’t seem quite legal. It’s just a good job I’ve decided to give next year’s Olympics a miss.
“You’ll never get back to sleep” was the advice from many quarters but it was too cold to read so I snuck off back to bed. And suddenly – 7.30am. I’d overslept. Continue reading