My brief post from the Onco Treatment Centre yesterday, was quite difficult. For some reason iPad will not actually show what you are typing on the site in the Wysiwyg, so I had to type in html which was really weird. I’ve always avoided learning to code directly with all those code bits etc. I can more or less identify a problem after the Wysiwyg does its thing, but don’t have the patience to do it from scratch (all hail Mari, Preggy and Charl). Anyway that’s a brief explanation for what looked, I’m sure, a rather rustic post.
With the chemo has come that old friend, chemical tongue and bowel cramps. I say friends because I’m still thinking of the pain as evidence of mofos being zapped. As I type, I’m waiting for my ‘takeaway’ to finish dripping (down to the last 2mls of 60ml), so that I can go in and pick up the next one. There was a shortage yesterday (or in general) of the drip that they give you to fend off neuropathy (I believe it’s got Calcium and Magnesium in it, but CalMag tabs won’t help for some reason) and I can feel the difference. I touched the cool doornob of the loo at the Onco Centre yesterday, and my fingers instantly zinged. Same happened my hands and washing veggies last night. Even the glass of filtered tap water that had cooled during the night zinged. Not painful exactly – just weird.
Apparently drinking or eating cold stuff can also cause what they call pharyngo-spasm, where your throat seizes up. Am I glad I had the Magnum after dinner on Tuesday!
In terms of the Zinging – I’m thinking of myself as having super-natural powers, when my fingers tingle, but I do wonder how come I never see cancer fighters in supermarkets. Given the epidemic proportions of cancer, and the many people who have to care for themselves and don’t have a Pat to open the fridge or freezer, you’d expect to see more people wearing gloves as they pick up frozen food. Or do they just not do frozen stuff? Another of life’s mysteries. My freebie mittens from the care pack are very useful during Pat’s down/away times – but they are made of fleece, so not real useful for water related activity.
Today’s smoothie was Pear, Blueberry and Yoghurt for breakfast. And wheatgrass extract which is supposed to be good for building up bone marrow and keeping red cells high. It tastes like…grass… gross unless you are a cow and have 4 stomachs! It totally messed up the other nice flavours – not to mention the colour which went an aggressive purple. Not appetising.
One very useful factoid from yesterday’s visit, was that we saw Dr James, who is Dr Landers’ partner. She pointed out that cancer is a chronic disease, not an acute one, and shared several success stories. A cure is unlikely, but managing the symptoms and side-effects becomes a life-long exercise, and therefore requires a headspace shift and different routines. I admit that I’m still hanging out for a cure, but it was heartening to think that this journey is not all or nothing, and that whatever happens I can work work back into the equation. For the first time, I felt that it may be doable, and that I can get back into a routine that involves thinking, writing and talking about education. Pat felt empowered by this information. I’m not sorry that I’ve taken leave and sick leave from work – it’s helped me a) get used to the physical effects and how to manage them and b) get my head in a focused place about what can and needs to be done and c) sorting out all the legal stuff, which should have been sorted years ago, but which all got left because Time was not of the essence. Silly really because who really knows?
It was fabulous to have Mari and Bwalya come round to see me in that time. Both appearing in gorgeous and energy-redolent, red summer outfits. It was great to catch up, find out about work and to suck down the beetroot and carrot smoothie from Earth Mother. Thanks for all the healthy trezzies guys.
My white cells were a bit high yesterday – suggesting that I had an infection starting – so I’m on an antibiotic also now. Amazing how the body is able to sort out which muti goes to what parts. I’ve had to let go of my metaphor of the body as more or less a washing machine or a concrete mixer (whatever the heartburn ad says), in which things go in at the mouth and get all churned up and directed certain places and come together in a certain output. Maybe I’ll spend time on the ‘net getting an answer or at least a better metaphor for this mystery. Or you guys out there who understand Biochem – can fill me in!
Okay time to hop to it. Takeaway bubble is done.