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Doubt if I'm missed

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Mark101, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    I doubt it, but my presence may have been noticed as somewhat irregular here and limited this year and particularly in the last two months.

    Essentially I've been acquiring chest infection after chest infection and now have a count of six since the start of the year. Normally I just pick up a bug from somewhere, a minor throat infection in the last instance, but it rapidly turns into a major chest infection. As with all Myeloma patients, I'm somewhat at risk due both lower immune systems and, as yet, totally unknown factors. Blood tests in February showed that I had a very slightly depressed immune system and as a result my Consultant arranged for an extra shot of pneumococcal vaccine to stimulate a response. This worked and my immunity was shown to be normal one month after the injection. However, I started developing infections again, which are quite serious for a Myeloma patient, but there is no reason why, save research which shows Myeloma sufferers have a predisposition to develop infections for totally unknown reasons. If fact, it's normally an infection or Kidney failure that kills, not the cancer itself. Living with this cancer since 2005 hasn't been easy because there is a need to fit your life in between treatment and illness.

    As a result of recent events I'm now on a life-long course of low strength antibiotics to assist my immune system. Thankfully, evidence shows that with this specific antibiotic in a low dose doesn't allow antibiotic resistance to build up, which is a big positive.

    I am very keen to avoid a repeat of December 2015 when I ended up in a coma at Papworth Hospital on ECMO with viral pneumonia, but this is somewhat restraining my social life and illness has certainly restricted my photography this year so far. I'm also struggling with my heavy Canon gear and although I also have a Panasonic GX8, I'm wondering if the time has arrive to ditch my Canon EOS gear and move totally into lighter weight mirrorless.
     
  2. AndyTake2

    AndyTake2 Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear you're having so much crap. I would ditch anything that makes photography harder, treat yourself to some lighter gear and go for it.
     
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  3. beatnik69

    beatnik69 Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear you've been ill Mark (or should I say more so than usually?). I hope the antibiotics get you sorted.

    I know where you are coming from regarding the heavy camera gear. Unfortunately I don't have the money to get a new camera so I will just have to use my Nikon P7000 more often.
     
    EightBitTony likes this.
  4. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear about your recent problems, Mark - all the very best with keeping these things at bay. As it happens, I had noticed the irregularity of your contributions, but they have always been worthwhile, nonetheless! :)

    Some lighter gear would seem appropriate, and some of the mirrorless stuff would certainly be a good option, IMO. Most manufacturers are doing pretty decent kit, these days, so I reckon that you just need to decide which brand/model suits you best... rather than worrying about all the 'nerdy' stuff. :D
     
    EightBitTony likes this.
  5. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry to hear that things have not been so great recently. I had noticed that you'd not been around as much, but then I've been a bit quiet of late too so it's all too easy to miss when people aren't as active as usual. I do think that if you feel you get benefit from photography (and I know I do) but the gear is making things trickier, then it's a good time to consider lighter weight equipment. I have a friend with MS, and I know that she gets enormous pleasure from her mirrorless camera now that she has finally let go of her DSLR. Being in a wheelchair doesn't seem like such an obstacle with the smaller camera to carry.
     
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  6. jchrisc

    jchrisc Well-Known Member

    Hi Mark - greetings from a fellow Myeloma sufferer. I was first diagnosed eight years ago last March so not quite as long suffering as you. You have my greatest sympathy.
    I take a whole gaggle of prophylactics to try to keep up my body's defences, including a three times a day anti-viral called Aciclovir. I'm under strict instructions to measure my temperature daily and to head straight to A&E if it wanders too far. In the three years that I have been following this routine I've had only one real alarm. It resulted in a day in A&E and a course of anti-biotics which cleared the problem.
    I've got all the usual Myeloma effects, shortage of breath, loss of muscle strength, no stamina and very slow recovery from any kind of fatigue.
    I sold all my Canon gear some long time ago and have been using Fuji XT stuff since then. Even the Fuji kit is too heavy to carry very far. I bought a small folding trolley and that helps a little on occasion.
    Best wishes
     
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  7. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    Chest infections are most unpleasant, due to a condition I have a tendency to them myself, luckily though I can still normally throw them off without antibiotics.

    With regard to camera gear I would do what you need to do to continue enjoying photography. Mirrorless gear is really the equal or can even surpass DSLRs now. I use Fujifilm mostly now, leaving my Nikon DSLR behind, I find the lightweight X-E1 performs better in low light than the Nikon and at least equals it in bright light, along with being much lighter to carry, I have an X-T2 as well, in reality it seems little better in output, although it is quicker as well as being heavier.
     
    EightBitTony likes this.
  8. DaveS

    DaveS Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear of your illnesses Mark. Yes, you have been missed, was wondering where you'd got to.
     
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  9. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    You are, you know.

    S
     
  10. swanseadave

    swanseadave Well-Known Member

    My thoughts are with you Mark,

    Dave.
     
  11. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    Sorry to hear that Mark.

    It was a chest infection that led to my immune overreaction and GBS last year and I still have only about 2/3 the strength I had before and have hand and feet problems. Carrying cases is now a real problem, so I have gone all wheelie and even my Oly M43 stuff is feeling heavy. I will get the new E-M5 Mk3 as soon as it comes out and just save the bigger things for situations where I don't have to lug it about. You really will not miss the big stuff one bit.
     
  12. Footloose

    Footloose Well-Known Member

    That's a downright miserable situation to be in Mark; makes my moaning about 7 weeks of bed-rest in hospital, followed by 4 at home, a pretty insignificant event. As for camera choice, I used to have a Dynax 9 but the weight and bulk, (with r/angle grip, about 2.3Kg!) resulted in me buying the E-1 in 2005-6, (a much-underrated camera when it appeared) which is almost half the weight! The mirrorless ones (excluding the EM-X) are even less than this. The Lumix's are about the same weight, but I don't like the Menu layout these use. The Fuji mirrorless DSLRs are surprisingly compact considering the sensor in them is bigger. Optically, Fujinon lenses are highly regarded.
    If you end up using a wheelchair, there are benefits as it's possible to carry all your gear, in a bag hanging underneath the seat, which makes your kit remarkably accessible. Here's how I fitted the bag onto the chair's frame :

    WC-Bag-QD-01.JPG

    Here's one of the bags I use, which employ the rings originally used to hold a detachable shoulder strap:

    WC-Bag01-Front.jpg

    Whilst here's my chair, with the bag attached, just visible behind my legs:

    WC-In-Use.jpg

    I have a self-propelled chair and that's what you want, - even if you haven't the strength in your arms and hands - because whoever is pushing you, can then easily tip the chair up to negotiate kerbs, as the 4 small-wheeled versions, could do in the back (and there are known cases of this happening) of the person trying to tip chairs backwards to negotiate a kerb.
    If they niggle, ask, "Are also going to pay for the insurance cover for when someone claims or sues you for an injured back, on the grounds that the chair isn't fit for the purpose of being used outside on streets?"

    Sorry for the rant at the end, but it's an issue that gets swept under carpet by some mobility assessors.
     
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  13. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    Having sat in it owing to lack of chairs in his ward, I can vouch for the comfort of Sam's Chariot of Fire.

    And yes, I've been wondering where you were. What a bummer!

    Adrian
     
    Mark101 likes this.
  14. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    A very strange cancer Myeloma since it fails to conform with the norms associated with the general understanding that most have of cancer. I can understand what you say about stamina certainly and it get's even more unusual if you have ever been to a Myeloma Info day with all the personal stories being so different. My issue is that I'm told I don't look my age (nor act it according to SHMBO) and I look fit and well, although my missing shoulder socket which crumbled to dust does my right arm no favours in terms of day to day life. The little work I do these days is all health related, including running the Myeloma Support Group at the local hospital cancer centre. I'm having a long hard think about the camera gear because I've got some really nice Canon L glass which would be hard to replace even with smaller kit. On the other hand, I suspect we are near the end for Canon DSLR before many years down the line, so perhaps it's time to move on. All I can say is that my Panasonic GX8 is a really fun camera to use and reminds me of my Pentax MX days.
     
  15. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    You seem to have your photography side of life well sorted and it's surprising the adaptions people can make to pursue a hobby with a disability. My Dad did some archery down at the Blind Veterans UK school in Brighton. It was a little disturbing how partially sighted and blind people could hit a target with a little training. Thankfully I'm far from needing a chair unless the Myeloma attacks more of my already damaged spine and I just have to be careful not to lift anything too heavy at the moment.
     
  16. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    Just to say thanks everyone, your words are very much appreciated.
     
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  17. ascu75

    ascu75 Well-Known Member

    Sorry you are having such a Crap time! I didn't know you do didn't miss you if you know what I mean. But reading this has made me decide to get rid of my DSLR and lenses I keep putting it off and I ain't going to ever get better so I need to accept the fact that it's point and shoot from now on and has been for some time. It's over a year since I used my kit. All that's happened is its value has decreased! So shall I sell my kit or not? I ain't a good photographer I take pictures not photographs I love my cameras both dslrs and film but I ain't going to use any seriously any more so do I cash them in? Anyone got any suggestions? Don
     
  18. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    Always a difficult kind of question to answer, some of us are unable to dispose of anything, a friend has more than a few broken Zeniths and screw thread Pentaxes, along with associated lenses. They have been in cupboards for years and may well remain there until such time as they are for somebody else to deal with. I admit to having a couple of Konica SLRs and lenses, they have little value, which renders the bother of listing them on Ebay not really worth it, I do rather like them though. I also have a rather nice OM1n and lenses, I never use it, although I work the shutter occasionally, I don't feel inclined to sell it though. The film cameras I do use from time to time are a Pentax 645 and various Nikons.

    Perhaps the way to go might be to go through the kit, being selective or as ruthless as you can be, retaining some and selling the rest, there is often a need to hold onto favourite items. Alternatively ask yourself what would you buy if all the camera gear you have was stolen? The answer to that could tell you how you would proceed. Asking myself that, I would most likely go down the Fujifilm CSC route, I highly rate these cameras and lenses, but I would also try to find decent Nikon FM2n & FE2 bodies and some lenses. If ultimately size/weight were major issues I would look at a Panasonic GX80, lovely little camera.
     
  19. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    I never knock the 'Point & Shoot' brigade especially since I was under orders of no camera kit on my Honeymoon trip to Florence a few ears back. My little Canon S120 did fine, shooting in RAW I managed to get some lovely shots and it would even easily slip into any of my pockets, including my shirt pocket. I still have that camera and it goes most places that even my GX8 wouldn't be appropriate. I have to say that attending a day course with Damian Demolder has made me a real fan of the four thirds Panasonics.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
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