Saturday, February 28, 2009
A few days until chemo #7.
One week until I see the psychiatrist and figure out SSRI stuff.
Two weeks until my CT scan, and chemo #8.
Four and a half weeks until Melissa moves.
Ten and a half weeks until chemo #12.
It's starting to feel like a reality...
One slight worry: I've already had a negative reaction to the CT contrast dye. In fact, they chose not to use contrast for that very reason, when they did my chest xray/line manipulation. They are, however, planning to use it for my CT scan in two weeks. Wouldn't it be a kicker, if I'm so close to beating cancer, and then I died from a nasty reaction to the dye? Yeah, that'd be a laugh.
Friday, February 27, 2009
- Belated note, but I absolutely adore the Death and Dying class
- Talked about talk therapy, and the benefits of journalling
- Felt like smugly patting myself on the back
- I have no idea where my time goes!
- I would love to spend a week just reading and playing videogames.
- Tomorrow is friday, which means it's almost the weekend, which means it's close to tuesday, which means it's almost round 7
- I so don't want to go for chemotherapy anymore
- January barely dragged by. I can't believe it's already the end of February. Now just let it be May.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
I wanted to blog last night, but... Okay, that's a lie. I did remember to blog, but I was already halfway into bed, and didn't actually want to, anymore.
Heard some interesting stats. According to a new study by the Canadian Cancer Something-or-Other (Society? Council? One of those), cancer prevention is much more effective than cancer treatment. 1/3 of cancers could be prevented if people would just stop smoking. [Not an issue]. 1/3 of cancers could be prevented if people maintained better diets, and exercised [Not a real pre-diagnosis issue]. That would mean that 1/3 of cancers occur just 'cause.
You know, I'm largely over the anger and/or cancer-related grief by now, but I still wish I had done something tangible, to get sick.
Yeah, I'm in a great mood.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
It's days like today that make blogging feel useless. I'm okay. No cancer symptoms, and no chemo symptoms. Life is "normal".
Tomorrow I'm going to Well-Fit, and hopefully to the real gym, as well. Energy is nice. Imagine that.
Also, I'm really ready to shake off this cold, you know?
Monday, February 23, 2009
I'm definitely in the manic upswing of things. Got a lot of stuff accomplished today. Most notably, I finished a bunch of fixes for a work project that had been dragging behind for ... oh, very long. I'll be very glad to see that finished tomorrow.
- Went to the gym. Oh, my dear derriere, how you will hate me tomorrow.
- The song "Auto Rock" by Mogwai comes highly recommended.
- The people on main campus have not paid me for two weeks. Heads will fucking roll. Aka, I'll send a meek email in the morning. Rar, I'm manly.
- If I don't sort and put away my laundry soon, gargoyles and snakes will attack me. That is, if my dear mother is to be believed. I fear she is right.
- Oh yeah, as of a few days ago, Melissa and I the proud owners of our first bits of furniture. Helloooo, sexy love seat and chairs.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Tomorrow is a day of gym and work. I think I'm heading into the manic phase of my faux bi-polar mood swings, so, here's hoping I'll be a good one.
I'd be really happy, though, if food tasted good again. It's been tasting like crap for the last week, and I could go for a super-tasty meal. It's funny, I can tell whether the food I eat tastes good, but I can't really enjoy it. Kinda like my left hemisphere is saying "This is made of yum and win, you should enjoy it!" and my right hemisphere is saying "Meh."
... yum and win... what the... fuck, I need sleep.
Friday, February 20, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
I theoretically have Well-Fit in the morning, but I don't know if sleep won't win that out. We'll see. Bed time.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
What wouldn't I give for three months to pass... No more cancer, no more chemo... On my way to moving in with Melissa... Starting life again... Going back to my job, filling out grad school applications, getting back into photography...
Melissa and I have been talking about converting one of the larger closets (5'x5') into a mini darkroom. I can't wait for all that...
I want to go to the gym.
Tomorrow I've got an appointment with my ophthalmologist. Before I got diagnosed, I was having disturbances in my left visual field -- fogging, light blooming, and periodic blind spots. That's cleared up pretty much completely, in the last few months, at least.
Good night, beautiful people.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
It's been three months since I started this blog. Three months ago, I was under the naive impression that life would get better, or easier. I know I'm not having the absolute worst time, but... Although I know I should try to take this one day at a time, I can't help but feel as though the worst is simply yet to come. Twelve treatments of chemo are just too fucking much. Six are enough. Ugh. I think the hardest part from now on will be to talk myself out of stopping after eight or ten sessions.
I nearly threw up today. Injecting the Heparin ... oh man. I still gag when I think about it. Uhhh... happy thoughts. Bunnies... Ice cream... Thomas Hodgkin falling down a flight of stairs...
Monday, February 16, 2009
I guess it serves me right, in a way, as I'm pretending I'm not sick, and all that, but bloody hell, I can't sit all cooped up and turn into Howard Hughes.
Very tired. Need sleep. Chemo tomorrow. Ugh.
I had my fitness assessment at the gym, yesterday. I learned a bunch of things about myself. Some rather positive... Some on the disturbing end. For example, I have 27lbs of fat on me. Although that's within the normal range, that just kinda weirds me out... Can't help but feel as though I've been dipped in lard. However, I have 62lbs of lean mass. I... uh... Guess that's good?
Then there was the truly depressing stuff. I've become painfully aware of the fact that I cannot for the life of me bend over to touch my toes. It feels as though the tendons in my legs are going to snap and shoot out the back of my knees. That, and apparently, my oxygen intake is in the "lowest of the low" range (33 ml/kg/min, average is 45 ml/kg/min). I'll try not to despair about my poor cardiovascular health, and blame it on the doxorubicin.
I just find it funny that I'd have poor cardio, when to this day I can do an hour on an exercise bike and only minimally want to die.
Come onnnn, less than three months!
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Got a few cool things, and priced some many cool things. We haven't figured out exact costs, but we're looking at a fair bit of cash that we'll end up spending. Luckily, income tax rebates come soon. More info soon. Bed time now.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Friday the 13th. How appropriate.
Mood continues to slide.
Got one of the FUCK CANCER t-shirts from a shop downtown, where the organization (called "(whatever) cancer") has some stock. The thoroughly unhelpful and downright surly aging hipster running the joint made sure it was as unpleasant as possible, buying the shirt. I know many people in retail will comment on the number of asshole customers... But I'm also surprised at the number of assholes working retail.
Bed time. Let's see if the world finally explodes tomorrow.
Friday, February 13, 2009
I'm starting to have a strange trade-off. When I first got sick, I tried to cling to activities that used to bring me joy. Normality was a source of comfort. Now, mostly because I'm failing pretty horrendously at performing the same tasks in which I took any pride, I've come to feel little more than distress 90% of the time. So, what's new? The gym. That's about it. So I'm spending a lot of time there. I guess that's not bad, though.
Started the day off by going to -- that's right, the gym. Then work. Decided I need to lighten my load. I've got two more projects in the works at my one job. Once I wrap those two up, I'm going on hiatus until I finish this cancer crap. I hope I'll still have a job there once I'm done... I've come to really love the research I've been apart of, and I've come to really love the people I've worked with. But right now, I can't help but feel like my work is a source of disappointment, both to myself, and to my colleagues. Sooo, I'll continue TAing the classes I'm TAing, provided that continues to work, but I'm calling it quits for research, until the summer. I'll spend all my days at the gym, then. Maybe I'll die sexy.
I visited Tori in Guelph, after work. She does a pretty good job of making me feel like an underachiever, what with going to Honduras to build houses, and the such. Oh, the idealism of youth :p
I don't know why, but for the last while, I've really been wanting to buy some face-paint, and drive around town in Joker make-up.
Addendum: In exactly three months, I will have had my last round of chemo. I'm just a few days short of the three month anniversary of my diagnosis. I guess I'm more or less halfway there. The glass is so half empty.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
I woke up around 10:30, and was back in bed about an hour later. Although I woke up feeling fine, while having breakfast I began feeling the energy drain away... Physically, and emotionally.
Why, why why do I feel so crappy lately?
- The song "Kids" by MGMT has a dangerously high level of awesome per square inch.
- Tomorrow I'm meeting someone running an organization at Wilfrid Laurier University... They're selling t-shirts that say FUCK CANCER in big, bold letters. I plan to purchase one or six such t-shirts.
- Fuck cancer.
- ... Fuck cancer.
I guess my blood counts must be getting low. My platelets must've tanked, because I'm bruising very easily. My port's been bugging me. I don't exactly have a lot of padding on my upper chest, and especially the line for the port, has been giving me grief. Given that it's passing over the collar bone, it gets dinged pretty often, and the skin is now faintly discolored and sensitive.
My memory is completely gone. This morning Melissa and I had an appointment to go measure the apartment. Apparently half an hour is already too long, and we were kinda ushered out. In the hurried nature of everything, I forgot to ask the super if we could start moving stuff in a couple of days early, because I have chemo the day before moving day. Combined with the forgetfulness of the last few days, forgetting about this put me in a pretty crappy mood. When I realised that I forgot the clipboard with all the measurements in the apartment, you could say I had something along the lines of a minor "episode."
Didn't know I had such capacity for self-loathing.
I realize it's chemically-induced, but I am severely unbalanced. Unhinged, you might say. I then spent the bulk of the afternoon oscillating between raging outbursts and catatonia.
I am now re-re-re-reconsidering the SSRIs. I think the chemotherapy and stress have triggered some low-level, rapid-cycling bipolar-like state. Every two or three weeks I go through unwavering mania for a few days, and then I sink and can't come back. This is my good week... The first half of today was fucking awful.
I luckily/sadly spent the day with Melissa. In so many ways, she really is my saviour... And I feel so guilty for dragging her down with me, so much of the time.
I honestly don't get it. I have days when I'm dealing with things so well. I think I'm fine with everything... And then I have days when I feel undeserving of the good days. Yep. I'm doing great.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
I kept forgetting stuff all day. Like, you know, going back to work to finish marking tests. Sorry about that...
The nagging feeling of "I'm forgetting something..." kinda dissipated in the middle of a 3-hour visit to ye olde gym today. I'll be feeling that tomorrow.
I had more to say. Hah. I forget...
Monday, February 9, 2009
I'm an irritable bag of ass! ARGH.
The entry was about me being the aforementioned bag of ass, though, so, it's no big loss.
Tomorrow is going to be such a long and crappy day... Ugh. Well-Fit tomorrow, though. I hope that'll put me in a better mood.
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Need bed. Need bed for a few months.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Hospital visit turned out rather fruitless. Fluoroscopy became quickly negated by the fact that I had a nasty reaction to the xray dye, and thus we ended up just doing a chest xray... which I already had done last week... but regardless, it once again showed nothing really wrong with my port. My doctor's advice: keep turning over during the night, to keep the port from jabbing into my heart and irritating the lining. Then get it removed as soon as I'm done chemotherapy. Thaaaanks.
Meetings, etc. Nothing special.
Melissa came by work and brought me tea. She's such a sweetheart.
Proctored a test this evening which actually went by very quickly, and was actually kind of fun. Afterwards, I went out for food + beer with a bunch of office denizens, and had additional fun. I can't remember the last time I did this, really... My guess is, before I got sick. It was a nice throw-back to "normal life".
Must now address student concerns, and then promptly begin snoring.
Addendum: At the gym, two days ago, it turns out I really strained a hamstring. Oh, aching groin, you're a lot funnier when you happen to people who are not me.
Addendum #2: For some reason, I felt compelled to read the first few entries in my blog. I can't even relate to myself two months ago. The things I've learned to accept are startling. I was so angry that I'll be spending the rest of my life fearing a relapse. Now it strikes me as irresponsible to not have cancer on your mind. Now it's there, all the time. But somehow, it's... Not comfortable, but expected. I'm used to having a port. I'm used to having good weeks, and bad weeks. I can't understand people who don't. I wonder if I'll ever go back to "being normal". Normal doesn't exist anymore.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
- Surgery at 10:30 to adjust the port
- Meeting on main campus at 2:30
- Proctoring test at 7:00
Did I mention I had chemo today?
I suspect I might be dead by 9, then.
I'm considering taking next week off. Off from work, off from life. It's things like this that... well, maybe they didn't make me sick, but they sure as hell created fertile grounds.
*raises hand* I solemnly swear to not give myself 10 hour days after chemo, ever again.
Speaking of chemotherapy, that vicious bastard that it is, I feel like garbage. Suddenly fatigue hit a little while ago, and my guts feel like they're rotting from the inside.
Now if you'll excuse me, there are a number of students emailing me about missed lecture material, the night before the test. I'm off to ruin some lives.
Monday, February 2, 2009
A day in point form:
- Hospital, early on, for blood work.
- White count is low. What's new?
- Got prescription for "Magic Mouthwash" to help with mouth sores. Ugh. That still sounds disgusting.
- Asked doc to look at last week's chest xray, to see if she could spot any enlarged lymph nodes. She said as far as xrays went, it looked pretty good.
- Will have fluoroscopy soon to make sure port is in the right place, after all. Heart palpitations continue, and have only started when I got the port.
- Work was busy, but I had much energy.
- Well-Fit was great. Endurance was nearly double on all exercises, from last time.
- Went to the gym with Rob. 2.5 hour workout. Probably will be sore tomorrow, but I've got a week to recuperate.
- Met up with Melissa, and the three of us had dinner.
- Here I am, nearly forgot to blog.
- Am surly.
- Chemo in the morning.
Sunday, February 1, 2009
Met up with Deltcho earlier on, which was nice. After that I went to the gym with Rob, where I was reminded of how terribly out of shape I've become. I saw my reflection in a mirror, while on an elliptical type machine I've nicknamed "the widowmaker", and couldn't help but liken my reflection to the image of a sagging raccoon, attempting to crawl up into, say, a cooler, or perhaps a garbage bin.
Afterwards, I picked up Melissa and we went to her place. I guess it had just been a while since we did this, or who knows what, but it was nice to just do normal, routine stuff, just the two of us... Cooked a simple but delicious dinner (spinach and dill omelette + shrimp with butter), and did the dishes. I guess I'm just really looking forward to when we get to actually live together and pretend to be all growed up an' stuff.
Okay, well, I have to be at the doctor's in 8.5 hours. I also have to get up early and satisfy an unspeakable craving for dead animal. I swear, I'm so close to just running into a field and tackling a cow, it's not even funny. I've been trying to supplement protein with other things, like nuts and the like, but nuh-uh. I have a fever, and the only prescription is more meat.