James here. We spoke when you first started on this journey. I live in Exeter and not sure how far that is from you, but if you need anything feel free to ask. I had a very difficult time with chemo too, especially oxalyplatin. I went through this treatment in 2006 so I imagine some things have changed, but I found that the meds they gave me to manage side effects caused their own side effects. The more I could simplify meds and food, the better off I was.
To manage side effects I only took lorazapam and smoked tiny (really tiny) amounts of pot and that got me through my infusion weeks well. The other thing that helped was I noticed that I felt way worse is I didn't eat than if I did. So, even though I had no appetite I experimented with different favor profiles (salty, sweet, spicy, etc.) to find things that broke through that metallic taste in my mouth and forced myself to eat. Increasing food intake helped and I found flavors or tastes that worked. For example, pepperoni pizza (frozen, not from a pizza place) was tolerable and that bland flavors--chicken without spice, plain rice or potato, etc.--were worse than things with a little heat or spice. I also found that tonic water mixed with lemon was good too. I think the bitterness of it was helped. The tonic water also helped ease my symptoms. I wouldn't mix grapefruit juice, though.
I hope this helps. As I said, feel free to reach out. If you don't still have my contact info let me know.
Diagnosed with stage III rectal tumor (though probably late stage II) January 2006.
Full APR Surgery
So far NED.
Oops. Liver tumor diagnosed 10/13 after elevated CEA. Liver resection for 5cm tumor 12/6/13. So far so good.
Oops again, one tumor in each lung diagnosed 8/8/16. One too small to deal with and the other resected in late September. Wait and watch for now.