“Kiki the cat had peed in the bathtub and the pee was bloody!”
Cat on the Berlin wall in Berlin – photo by (c) howlzap Cologne

I’m superstitious, not about black cats, but certainly about the intertwining of messages and events. My three-monthly check-up cystoscopy was on Monday this week. I woke up to the fact that Kiki the cat had peed in the bathtub and the pee was bloody!

It was definitely a bad omen. She’d had a bladder issue in April and there had been blood, luckily antibiotics cleared it up. However, considering my situation and knowing blood in pee can be a symptom of a tumour in the bladder, alarm bells rang for both of us.

Omen number two was the Chinese lucky cat that waves the luck in, clearly NOT waving.

In the cystoscopy room I realized this was my tenth cystosopy it’s still a very surreal experience seeing inside your own body. I was expecting to see the scars and some clear pink areas and focused on visualizing a “no evidence of disease” result. My bladder is very scarred after eight operations it looks like skin after it has been burned and healed. Then, all eyes in the room came into focus on the bump in my bladder that’s not supposed to be there. My doctor looked at me and I looked at him.” Oh no! Not again!!” we both said almost in unison.

The last time the bladder cancer recurred in January 2019 the pathology showed it was benign but this one looked different it looked more like a flower again and the December / January one just looked like a spot.

In a minute everything had changed, and operations, results and other treatments loomed into view. I’m a patient again with an active condition that needs an operation. Fresh obstacles and uncertainty to manage before I’m fit again. It will be my ninth operation I really and truly hope it’s my last.