May: A Round-up

June 1, 2018 6 Comments
Sarah Gaffney-Lang, May round up M&S white flatforms

May: A Round-up

June 1, 2018 6 Comments

May. So many reasons to love it, so many reasons to maybe not love it.

Let’s start with the good stuff. No less than TWO bank holidays – I mean who doesn’t live for the DFS and B&Q adverts on rotation!!

Meghan and Harry (yes, of course, I cried) and, if you’ve been keeping tabs and adding the days up – approximately two weeks of *actual* sunshine.

What’s the problem then? Well, let’s start with opening an extremely heavy gate into my face. WTF.

Best not to do that, if you can help it. Because, if you are unfortunate enough to fracture your nose, you’ll spend hours checking if your face has changed. Hours upon hours!!! You might need said nose resetting (not fun) and if that’s the case, you’ll have to wear a nose splint for a week (also not fun).

At least the guys in my local shop know the drill – that is: saying absolutely nothing about it, and avoiding all eye contact. Such good sports!

The other thing… my knee pain is back to peak levels (caused by a meniscal tear – very unhelpfully on my weak side). But thankfully, I’ve managed to get the ball rolling on the surgery front. It’s a pain (pun intended!), but progress is progress, you know?

Has anyone seen my May mojo?

If I’m keeping it real – May’s been tough. It marked my second month free from chemotherapy, so I kinda expected non-stop smiling-celebratory-activities. But, actually, it’s been a big old anti-climax. The metaphorical New Year’s Eve party.

I might be missing treatment. Not missing it missing it, but missing what it provided. By that, I mean structure and a sense of purpose. It had been my day job.

As much as we all want to think that we operate entirely on our own terms… you only have to peel back a few of our free-spirited layers, to find more than a few consistent themes – the stuff that holds ‘it’ all in place. Our habits, rituals, and (shudder) routines.

Talking with your mouth full even though you are trying to stop. Or doing the bins on a Tuesday night, because it’s just the way. They aren’t roles that we seek out, no, it’s more a case of drifting into them over time. But, despite our protests: we kinda like it that way.

You’ll find me setting four alarms (one for when I’m *supposed* to get up, and three ‘back-ups’) in bed, knowing full well that I’ll snooze every single one, and drag/roll myself out of bed at the-very-last-minute. I’ve been doing it for years. And laundry is my bag, although I’m often in trouble for shrinking things.

Into the groove

So we know now, that chemotherapy provided a routine; places to be, and things to remember. I was running the joint.

And since none of it is optional, I stuck to the rules.

There is a certain security in the check-ups, and the scientists hurriedly analysing frequently taken blood samples.

My veins are off on their jollies now – recuperating, with their feet up. Whilst I find myself in the throes of a sort of job share affair. Getting to know each other, and establishing who should do what, and when.

The period of limbo has resulted in big wardrobe clear-outs, charity shop donations, and filing of paperwork (snore).

Blogging, however, has been trickier, and in recent weeks I’ve struggled with keeping motivated.

I’d assumed, (optimistically) that the transition would be easy.

In fact, without the appointments and chemo regimes – I’m actually bored. And more than that, I’m not quite sure what to do with myself.

If you have had similar experiences, help a girl out! How did you cope during this peculiar phase?

Sar x

(check out my May loves below).

Sarah Gaffney-Lang, May round up M&S white flatforms
Shoes – M&S.

May loves

Tune of the month

Too much by Tora – discovered via a random Spotify playlist – now the soundtrack to my daily physio.

Watch of the month

Queer Eye – you will binge like never before, and need this fab five in your life immediately. Plans for a girls night screening of series 2 are afoot (FYI, the release date is the 15th of June).

Book of the month

Yes, please, Amy Poehler – this gem has finally worked it’s way up my TBR pile and offers all the laugh-out-loud moments and life advice you need.

Blog of the month

Alice-May Purkiss.

Alice is doing loads of great stuff in the breast cancer sphere (if we can call it that) and recently gave a talk at Maggie’s (London) about the language used when talking about cancer. I’d been planning to write my own post on this subject (side note: you may have noticed that there are no ‘brain tumour warrior’ references on these pages, and that’s because I have never subscribed to that narrative), and so it was brilliant to read Alice’s thoughts.

Buys of the month

I’ve been on my best behaviour this month. Useful buys only!

I couldn’t resist these deliciously shiny flatforms in white. They’re just perfect.

Also since my yoga mat was looking a bit tired I added this grey one – complete with practical carry-straps to my M&S basket.


  • jasmin June 9, 2018 at 2:24 pm

    Marks and Sparks shoes are the boss! I’ve recently bought my first pair of Clarks shoes since I was in primary school… I can’t tell if I’m just settling into old aged-dom or if they are as cool as I think they are.

    • SarahGaffney June 10, 2018 at 10:58 am

      Hey Jasmin! Hahaha I know what you mean, especially on the Clarks front, but you know what – I think they’ve upped their game…no shame these days 🙂

  • Bazza June 4, 2018 at 6:23 pm

    Keep on blogging. You’re a born writer, like your dad.

    • SarahGaffney June 4, 2018 at 8:15 pm

      Thanks very much! I’m glad you are enjoying 🙂

  • Alice-May Purkiss June 4, 2018 at 3:37 pm

    So firstly I popped on here to say how natural it is to feel this way after treatment. I think everyone feels the absence of the routine – having been through something that causes such emotional upheaval structure is a bit of a safety net. So be kind to yourself and be as considerate as you would be to a friend who had just been through what you’ve been through.

    THEN I saw my name on your piece there and wanted to say BIG THANKS for mentioning my blog. So glad to hear what I wrote resonated with you. I never want to say I speak for everyone so always grateful to hear that what I’m saying makes sense to those who get it!

    Big love to you lady, and remember, kindness is key.

    • SarahGaffney June 4, 2018 at 3:42 pm

      Hi Alice,

      I’ve been meaning to message /tag you so you that knew I’d featured your blog. Glad you found it anyway!

      And thanks so much for the kind words 🙂 and yes, I found the piece you’d prepared for the evening very very pertinent xx

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