My guide to the ride that is the Chemo bus

One More. One More. Then I'm back...

One More. One More. Then I’m back…

Seasoned veteran – 5 of 6 done.


BIG DISCLAIMER – I am not a medical person atall – never will be so these gems are my own and not verified atall by anyone!


1. Take a big bag to the oncology department – and make it a bag that you will throw away once it is over – in the bag pack the following:

Tissues, a bottle of water, hand cream, hand sanitizer, boiled sweets, salty crisps, newspapers, magazines, i-pad, ear phones, a pashmina to keep the shivers at bay, warm socks (take shoes off you are in for a 4 hour at least session), money if you have to pay car parking (grrr – but I didn’t have to pay – love Cheshire West Council for that), hats and head scarves, glasses if you wear contacts.

2. Make a diary note of each session so you know how you felt when you were in the midst of a session,  as the memory is a wonderful thing and blanks all the bad bits quickly – but if your chemo nurse knows you turned orange, had mouth ulcers, thrush, sore hand, sickness, sore legs then she / he can help you – if they don’t know they can’t re jig your prescription.

3. Take a friend – do a crossword, plan holidays, oggle Right Move – or what ever floats your boat – 6 sessions from 0800h to 1400h is 36 hours – that’s the equivalent to a very long bus journey – so make it a good friend!

4. Buy ready made meals for at least a few days – I was lucky enough to have a Mum who sent me a freezer load of Donald Russel stuff – amazingly tasty and good for you and better than average supermarket – and mates who turned up with home made stuff too

5. Buy snacks for the first few days – the anti sickness drugs work by settling everything down but also triggering appetite (I think) so I was super hungry really acutely for an hour or so and eating helps the room stop spinning – nuts, chocolate, twiglets, fruit – whatever works – get it in ……seriously I made the mistake of not eating for Chemo 1 days 1-3 and felt worse – other bus rides I stuffed my face til the 4th day and then appetite returned to normal

6. If you get a sore hand from the injection cannular thingy ma jig then warmth worked for me – ask them for a hot bag whilst the drip is dripping in. Then when you get home keep it warm – I made a sock / arm cover out of a pair of warm wollen tights as wanted warmth but not restriction. Then once you feel a bit normal start swinging your arms around like a lunatic to get the swelling down.

7. Go for a walk. Take a friend. By chemo 5 I can do 15 minutes maximum and feel like I have concrete in my feet – but I feel better for doing it and by day 10 I feel normal again.

8. I bought a new tooth brush and toothpaste for every chemo session. I chose a kids one as my mouth was so sore I couldn’t cope with adult size. And the pink princess made me smile despite having a tongue the size of a flip flop.

9. Moisturize all the time – fingers, cuticles, toes, face, feet – all of you – those drugs suck every bit of water out of you.

10. Embrace the Chemo Tan – I matched headscarves and clothing to my orangey glow which thankfully only lasted a few days.




Maintain a sense of humour. The Chemo drugs are killing. each. and. everyone of those nasty cancer cells.

No one died of chemo – people die of cancer.

Not me – Fight this Fight – One more to go……………..I’m a coming attcha………


FTF xxx



One thought on “My guide to the ride that is the Chemo bus

  1. Brilliant Kerry. You are doing incredibly well and am so proud of you. Nearly there! So looking forward to seeing you in July. xxxx

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