Warning: below the fold is a photo of my chemo port taken right after surgery. It’s not hideous, looks kinda like a body mod gone wrong, but if you’re sensitive, don’t look.
So, the 19th. My diagnosis was on Dec. 19th. January 19th was medical hell day. I’m starting to dislike 19ths. Yesterday, had to leave the house at 5:45am for a full day: PET scan, radiation doc visit, MRI, and chemo port installation. We finished up all the medical stuff at 6pm. Tired doesn’t begin to cover it.
Oh look, I’m a lovely shade of Trump! This is what a port looks like right after surgery, with a protective coating on, which should dissolve in about week or so. The site itself is quite sore, but the surrounding areas are fine. I’ve now reached a point where I’m glad enough to get moving on this, but it’s going to be a long haul – eight months of treatment. Months and months of crazy. Months and months of traveling back and forth. Got to get all the family leave stuff straightened out. Applied for gas cards from the hospital. Have to start looking for a place to rent in Bismarck where we can have the monster dogs with us. When you live in a state where the majority of people are rural, hospitals have a block of apartments for patients to stay at, but of course, they don’t include anything pesky, like pets. Doll is now 16 years old, and she seriously dislikes it if we disappear for two or three days. Jayne gets superhyper if we disappear, and we keep instilling abandonment issues in them, which is upsetting for all of us.
Right about this point, you can’t think straight, and every time you try to just focus on everyday matters, there’s a background of CANCERCANCERCANCERDEATHCANCERCANCER in your head. It’s difficult to focus on all the shit you need to do, like find a temporary residence, and what this is doing to your bank balance, and you have to stop putting off having your hair cut, because you get so damn tired of being cancer focused, so you get it both directions, and stop wanting to think about anything at all.
I did finally cave in, a tiny bit, after yesterday. I went to sleep and did not set my alarm. Slept in to almost 10am, and ohgods did it ever feel good. You can be so focused on trying to maintain your regular life that you ignore all the alarms going off in your head and the sense of utter fatigue threatens to eat you alive. Whether or not it suits you, compromise is the rule during treatment. Just one night of not slaving myself to the clock has helped to up my energy again, so it’s likely there will be a number of days coming up where everything is late to start on Affinity. You’ll know I’m having a snooze.
I have to be back to oncology on Monday at 8am, and I might have a better idea of the upcoming schedule then. Oh, some good news – I made the clinical trial, yay me. And for anyone else going through this in any form, if you have the chance to get in on a study, take it – this is an easy way to help yourself and to help so many others. Other good news: the tumour hasn’t broken containment; most likely stage 3, and all the surrounding areas and organs look to be clear of cancer.