Thursday, September 11, 2008
On the way to the hospital in Arizona with Melanie, I yelped and then we hit a curb. She asked me why I knew to yelp before it happened and I said,"because I'm a precog." (Remember those psychics from Minority Report?) Little did I know that within a couple weeks I'd really look like one. And I had no idea what the real future held for me.
Last week I went to Arizona for the same "Creative Escape" weekend that I worked at last year when I found out I was sick. It was bittersweet. The first night we were there, I slept in the same bed that I had laid in the year before staring up at the fan wondering if the pain would go away or if I should go wake up Melanie. I was also wondering if the hit I could receive from Jeff (he's violent in his sleep and scary to wake up) would hurt more than the pain I was already in. I watched that ceiling for what seemed like forever. This time I went to bed in that room just about an hour after running my first 10k race (the Nike Human Race - why saturday night? long story.) I couldn't have done that last year.
Mel and I last year at Creative Escape
And this year at Creative Escape. Yes, that's my new hair. Dark, huh?
I feel better. I wake up every day grateful. I really do. I'm so happy to have energy and to be able to do everything for myself. I'm even happy when I have to shave my legs. Hooray for hair! I'm happy I get to be here for all the little monkey things my kids (including Jaymee) do. (Like when Preslie asked Sienna to open something for her and Sienna told her to go ask someone else so P went up to the cat and said,"Oscar? Open dis for me, peas?") I'm grateful to have more time to improve myself. More time to get better in the ways that really count.
So what else remains?
Physically, I have some weird scratch marks on my side, chest and back. From the chemo of all things. It looks like chemo has sharp nails and we got in a fight. I won, but the scars remain. I have a nice scar on my chest from my biopsy that has a dent under it. I can't help but stick my finger in it. As for my fingers, the feeling never came back to the tips. It feels like there is super glue stuck on the ends. Maybe my super power is being able to touch hot things and not feel it. Now that my nails have grown back, it doesn't really bother me because I don't touch as much with my fingertips. I wake up to my chest feeling like it's tight and can't expand. It's from the radiation. It takes about fifteen minutes and then I feel fine. As of this last week, I can't swallow breakfast anymore. My throat is too tight in the morning. Also from the radiation. But I just have a shake (which is what I want anyway) and by lunch I'm fine. Jaymee thinks that will heal itself. What else? I'm not sure if I can have any more kids and I have to wait another year and a half before I can even try. That's right. Can't even practice trying. Poor Jaym. Just kidding. I think that's all that's left. When I consider what my body went through, that's pretty awesome. Not bad at all. Hooray for modern medicine! (and blessings)
When I was looking through my pictures for that one of CE last year, I was able to see everything we had captured in the past twelve months. It truly was great. I wouldn't trade it for anything. (I don't want to do it again, but I'm glad for that one time) I'm kinda sad that I didn't capture more of everything. The people who came to help, all the stages of hair loss, etc. I was too embarrassed. By the end I didn't care, but I did at the beginning. Mel told me I'd want to see it later, but I didn't believe her. Here's some pics I didn't post while it was happening because I didn't want to freak my mom out.
My blistery feet (chemo side-effect)
While I don't have a lot of pictures, at least I have the blog. I'm so grateful to Mel for creating it and making me get on here. I wouldn't have documented it without her. It forced me to really contemplate what was going on and what it meant to me. All the comments and feedback got me though the tougher days. I felt so much support and like there was a bunch of people rooting for me. Thank you. I was talking to Jason Hall who was our motivational speaker at the conference. He's quadriplegic, funny and amazing. He interested me in making my blog into a book and I'm considering it. It'll be a short book, since I'm lucky enough to have only been sick for a short time, but I want to remember. I don't know. I was thinking of putting the blog and people's comments on one side and then kind of a bio of what was going on that I didn't say on the blog, i.e. doctors appointments, progress, side effects, etc. and pictures on the other. Would you guys care if I used your comments? I'm still tossing this around, but I think I might do it. If anything, I'd like to have a copy for myself and maybe a couple for Jaymeson's office. There really aren't a lot of things out there for Lymphoma. Breast cancer is the celebrity. I would have loved to have something that told me what I would go through and feel when I was sick.
ANYWAY. This one was really rambly. Sorry. It didn't really come together. I've been off my game for a couple weeks now. I've been wanting to post something about it being a year for a while now and all I got was a block. I've said everything all along though, haven't I? So what would be new? You still know that I love you, right? That's all I really want to say.