formerly Diane's Addled Ramblings... the ramblings are still addled, just like before, and the URL is still the same...
it's just the title at the top of the page that's new

Monday, May 18, 2015

Chemo-cal Reaction

I finished up my second round of chemo this past Thursday and Friday.

I meant to post between the first and the second rounds... but I didn't.

I meant to have things to say other than how this is affecting me... but I don't.

It has been a part of my every waking thought for the past four weeks... well, longer, really (since I found out it was going to happen).

And today might not be the best day to write about the whole mess, because I really don't feel well. And I'm tired of not feeling well. And I want to cry. And that makes me feel like a big baby and I hate feeling like a big baby. But I'm writing about it anyway. I need to. I don't want to forget how rotten I feel right now... because when this is all over (for now) I want to be able to look back on it and, when I'm whining about something else that's going wrong in my life, remind myself that as long as I am still here, I need to get off my ass and just get on with it.

I was so proud of myself last month for getting through the first round, mostly unscathed. Yes, I felt pretty bad after the port surgery, but the chemo seemed to go OK. I wrote about it when I was feeling OK.

Then I stopped feeling OK. Saturday - the day right after - was not too bad. Woozy and shaky were the worst feelings. I could eat. I was tired, but I could move. But Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday? Not so good. Not so good at all. The nausea (you know, the nausea that *most* people don't seem to get with this type of chemo) was awful. The flu-like symptoms that came on later were less-than-pleasant. The fatigue was crap. In fact, it was pretty much all crap.

Last month went like this:

Chemo Days: Fine
The Day After: Not too bad
The 1st Week: Complete and utter shite
The 2nd Week: Moderately shite
The 3rd Week: Almost human
The 4th Week: Pretty good

Now, let's start all over again, shall we?

I really and truly thought it was going to go OK.

I'm really and truly an idiot.

What I've discovered is that no matter what they tell you, this is different for *everyone.* No matter what anyone else has experienced, your experience will not be the same as theirs. It just won't.

And no matter what? This sucks. It really and truly does.

For the past two days, I have felt bizarrely awful. The stronger anti-nausea meds they pumped through my IV are helping, so that's something. But they do *other* things. I feel as though the physical part of me that's *me* - that dwells inside my skin and looks out at the world and makes me move and roll over in bed and change the channel on the TV and think clearly - has been shrunk down to 1/3 its size, then wrapped in gauze, and set to 'vibrate.' I don't know any other way to explain it. I don't feel in control of myself. I feel dizzy and sweaty, and even though the threat of throwing up isn't on the front-burner, it's sitting there on the counter, just waiting to be put in the pot. And my heart and lungs feel as though they're being gripped and squeezed regularly, but in a frustrating non-rhythm, so that catching my breath is something I have to *think* about and do when I can.

It's alarming. It's scary. And it sucks.

It really and truly does.

And I don't want to sound like a baby. I don't want to whine or complain. I want to be brave and just plow through and get on with all the other things I have to do and want to do, like work and swim coaching and mowing my lawn and cleaning my house and hanging out with Ryan and taking Sunny to the park.

But right now? All I want to do is curl up in a little ball and cry.

And I hate that.

I hate this.

I really and truly do.


Amy McMean said...

I think you are kick ass. I have always found strength and inspiration in your words. And I think you are kick ass! And kick ass people can cry, they can whine, they can pretty much do whatever they want because........they are kick ass!

Sending positive vibes your way......because even kick ass people need help sometimes.

rosaria williams said...

First, thanks for being honest and real and detailed enough to give us that sense that going through these rounds is a series of battles that kill parts of you aND yet you are aware enough that you feel all and everything is being attacked. I feel privileged to have read your words. Privileged to know someone like you who can find words to say that which is hard to describe. I hope I can find the strength when I need to because all of us will experience life at this level. By sharing your pain, you have opened our eyes and our hearts too. Blessings to you.

Sallie said...

You never cease to amaze me with your writing! Although it's impossible for me to know exactly what you're going through, your words make it easier to try to understand. It's ok to want to curl up in a ball and cry. Maybe, just maybe, that's exactly what you need to do. No, it's not a pity party for one but simply a way to relieve your body of unnecessary stress. I'll continue to pray for strength and a return to better health.

Anonymous said...

Hi D - I'm really sorry to hear it is all shit/ shite/ crap/ excrement/ pile of turds/ poo/ festering dung... Bitch away. Be angry. Write. Cry. |Scream. Do whatever it takes to get you through this wretched time sane and safe. Love Me, your antipodean cuz.

dianne said...

Diane dear, do what you have to do, curl up and cry and get all of that pent up fear and frustration out of your system.
You are not a big baby and you are certainly not an idiot, you are very brave and I applaud you for your courage.
Back in February/March I went through an awful time as far as my health is concerned, my heart is not the strongest. I had many invasive tests before I could have my surgery. I remained very stoic but I was very frightened as you only get one heart. I have not had chemo and I am not comparing your illness with mine but I do have some idea of what you are going through.
All the very best wishes to you for better health and happier times.
xoxoxo ♡

Alyce said...

Love you. Don't waste energy feeling crap about feeling crap. You're entitled to feel yucky; just get through that. You gots lotsa people rooting for you. (I thought I was your number one antipodean cuz :-)

♥ N o v a said...

Hi, I'm new to your site, so I'm a new fan. :-) I've known quite a few people that have undergone chemotherapy, and while it is true that "it is different for everyone," the one thing that is consistent, is that it just plain sucks. Big hugs to you for sharing your thoughts on it, and lots of high fives for staying so courageous in your battle to kick this mutha in the face!