Chemotherapy is not fun. Being bald is not beautiful (for me anyway) and I am sick and tired of being sick and tired! I have almost never been sick a day in my life before all this and I am finding out I am not a patient, patient. I vow to burn the couch when this is over! I am so tired of sitting on the couch! You would think I could catch up on some reading. You would think I could paint or draw, I am an artist. You would think I could practice my cello. Not so much, this whole cancer thing, diagnosis, treatment, etc. permeates your mind and weakens your body. It really makes it hard to do much of anything. I have always been strong and active and right now I feel like I am 105, taking my last breath! I have always been a list maker and my favorite part of making a to do list is marking off all the things I accomplished in a day. I read somewhere that when you are going through cancer treatment to go ahead and write your list and be happy if you get to mark off one or two things. I thought, “Not me!” but it’s true.
I am learning tolerance and patience. I am learning to let the small stuff go. I am learning that what doesn’t get done today will still be there tomorrow. I am learning to ask for help. I am learning to love myself, with all my imperfections. I am learning whats really important to me. This is all very, very hard for me. I am learning that people are scared for me and I am finding out what true friends I have. I am so grateful for the people in my life. I don’t have a large family, my Mom and Dad are both gone. So I have really had a lot of support from some amazing friends. Since I am unable to do much, something I have really enjoyed doing is having people over for dinner and visiting. Jerry, Scott and I whip up something easy and delicious and invite someone to dinner, almost every week. It has been a life saver for me!
I am finding as chemo goes on that there seems to be a pattern. Tuesday I spend half the day getting my treatment come home and chill. Wednesday I am a wild woman, due to the steroids, clean the house, groom the horses, etc. Thursday I crash! My sinuses are swollen, my cheeks puff up, I can’t breath, everything hurts. I’m in a terrible mood. I am just basically miserable! I pretty much just lay on the couch and watch Americas Next Top Model marathons, don’t judge! Friday a little better, mentally anyway. Saturday I am starting to feel human, still pretty weak. Sunday I’m getting stronger! Monday I feel great! Just in time for Tuesday and we start over.
One of the hardest things of all this is how little control you seem to have. I have always taken care of myself and my family and now strangers are telling me, you have to do this and don’t do that, it is all so overwhelming! I have found some things to do for myself that make me feel better, like I am taking care of myself in some small ways. To counteract some of the side effects of chemo I drink lots of filtered water and dry brush my skin every evening, to prevent skin problems and to help lymphatic drainage. I try and do some yoga every morning, to keep the muscle soreness to a minimum. I am using only unscented organic body washes and shampoo, and avoiding chemical perfumes. I put almond oil on my nails, I drink healthy superfood smoothies for breakfast, I oil pull with coconut oil and tea tree oil to prevent mouth sores. And I try to get out in nature every day it is very grounding for me and feeling the fresh air on my skin revives me! I am not a doctor and I don’t play one on TV but these things helped me! To be continued