The Gifts of Cancer

My energy isn’t what it was before I got cancer.  I can’t do everything I used to do but I can do some other things.  I went to go for a bike ride several weeks ago and I knew I couldn’t do my usual hill bike ride, I did not have the endurance for it.  I went for a 45 minute bike ride in the community where I live and it was wonderful.  I rode my bike to La Jolla Cove a few days ago and the surf was too big to swim in my condition.  I planted myself in some shade and watched the lifeguards earn their pay.  They did lots of rescues.  I did some fun people watching including some really goofy students from LA.  All sights and experiences I wouldn’t have had without the big “C”

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The Cancer Fight

Many people have told me I need to fight cancer and take care of myself.  I believe my part in “the fight”  is to take my chemo and get my labs drawn and keep living the life I know as best I can; suit up and show up.  God has taken up the fight for me and I’m not sure how it is going to go, but I am going to do my part.  Fighting is something I don’t want to engage in, I get angry too easily as it is.  I am going to ask God to fight this fight, take care of me and count on him to do so…..

Irreverent sense of humor

This is very useful when you have cancer.  It helps with everything, especially for not taking cancer seriously.  The loved one has an irreverent sense of humor that keeps me laughing.  Today I got a card of encouragement from some friends of ours.  I told the loved one “I got a card from so and so”  He said “a happy cancer card”  Congratulations you have cancer.  Not quite, but it is funny….

Good Cancer Day

I had a great day!  I did everything I wanted to do, trained and exercised dogs, went to gym, cut and color hair along with a few other mundane things.  Really great after the previous 2 days with chemo and a delayed reaction to a new drug.  The reaction is unusual after you leave the chemo room.  I spent the next morning in the ER and the afternoon getting another dose of chemo.  Next month I will know better how to manage my symptoms and it will go better.

Off Work

One of the gifts of cancer is I get to go off work on a medical leave of absence, a subsidized 6 month vacation from work.  I’m enjoying this week of it…my energy is better and I have several more days before I get round 2 of chemo.  I’m training my dogs, visiting friends and family and enjoying the new AC the loved one installed….

The “C” card

When you play this one, all is forgiven, everything is good, all is listened to just because you have cancer.  I had started just dropping it into conversations as my way of processing my diagnosis.  People in a hurry are now listening to me more.  They are laughing at stories that really aren’t that funny, humoring me with a little more attention.  When you drop the “C” card most people are sorry and listen to your tale, offer help and sometimes a story of a friend who had something just like what I have.  While I was away from the house yesterday the loved one said the contractor from our remodel last year stopped by.  He asked how I was and when he said I had cancer the guy seemed uncomfortable and left quickly.

Upside of cancer and chemo

This has been a tough one too…It has gotten me to rethink some things and set some goals I might not have otherwise.  Goals for during chemo and goals for when I am in remission.  I am deeply grateful for all the support I have received from family and friends who I hope realize I’m not really brave or courageous as they say. I’m just living my life…as Marie-Laure was in All the Light you Cannot see. I got cancer and now I have to figure out how to have a life while I’m in treatment and hopefully when I go into remission. Mostly I’m hoping I have more energy tomorrow than today…

1st cycle of chemo down

I had a one hr infusion of Bendamustine on Tuesday and Wednesday. These were preceded by an anti nausea drug both days and a steroid the first day.  I will go 2 days every 28 days for 6 months. The loved one came the first time and stayed with his eyes dilated the whole time, asking multiple questions including should I go to the bathroom alone.  The second day I had him drop me off and a friend picked me up.

They will add another drug that has a 6hr infusion rate next time. I feel fine now the dosing is cumulative so it remains to be seen how I will feel throughout. I had one conversation with one other patient there who put my disease in total perspective.  I do have a hangnail as far as cancer is concerned….