Thursday, March 11, 2010


I thought that maybe as I further distanced myself from chemo, it would get progressively easier to come back and begin writing more about this new phase of the experience and the new things I'm going through. As I pushed closer and closer to the end of chemo, it was becoming harder to find the right things to say, as well as the energy and motivation to put them onto the page in front of me. I wanted to write, but I felt I had less to share, and it just hasn't gotten any easier.

Maybe it's this unquestioning need I feel to put all of this in the past as fast as possible that makes it difficult to keep coming back to it and diving deeper into its depths by exploring it from so many different angles. Maybe I'm just enjoying being able to get outside and do some of the things I couldn't before, and surely that isn't a bad thing. I feel more like my normal self now than I have in such a long time, it makes me wonder how I went so long without me. I'm still figuring out how to cope with the phantoms in my head that don't seem to want to go away, but I'm okay with having some reminders as long as they don't keep me from being in a positive place. And I still have nightmares a few times a week, where something or someone is desperately trying to kill me, but now when I wake up I can usually fall back asleep, something I couldn't do before.

That's probably made the biggest difference to me since having this extended recovery time. When my body feels good, it's so much easier to fall asleep. And when I can sleep, it makes my body and mind feel so much more refreshed, which in turn makes it easier to fall asleep again the next time. If you know me well, you know that I love and cherish my sleep. I like staying up late, I don't like waking up early, and I don't like alarm clocks, not that I know anyone who does. At the end of the day, I'll take more sleep and a few nightmares over less sleep and a lot of nightmares in a heartbeat.

I still have blood work done once a week. Yesterday I had another Bone Marrow Biopsy, which, I believe, puts my total somewhere in the teens. Tomorrow brings another PET Scan, and next week we confront the decision regarding whether or not to begin low-dose chemo in addition to radiation, or to hold off on it in favor of the vaccines that would begin shortly after radiation ends in a few weeks. So even though radiation is far less severe than was chemo, I'm still constantly reminded of where I am and where I'm trying to go. I'm still taking things one day at a time, and telling myself to appreciate even the little things as I and different aspects of my life continue to get better. The ups and downs remain, as I'm sure they always will, but it is most definitely getting easier to sleep at night.