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Chemo Infusion #23 (one week later)
Treatment Days 297-304, 42 weeks
This is the second treatment of this chemo’s cycle; it’s three weeks on and off. It’s kicking my butt.
I have NO energy. I snooze, I snack, I stare. When I do get vertical, I do ONE simple thing (like make coffee), think about doing a second simple thing (like taking out the garbage or picking up dirty laundry from the floor), then decide no, I need a nap. Thank Modern Times for paper plates!
I have a near constant awareness of nausea, just a touch of it, just enough floating at the edge of my consciousness for me to be aware of it. I have little appetite, and when I do fix food, I eat only half of a normal portion. And nearly everything tastes vaguely salty: what’s that about?
Now that I have a completely hairless head and face, I look more like a post-apocalyptic atomic radiation zombie, but I’m thinking maybe I’m turning, partially, into a vampire. Many months ago I mentioned that while under the influence of chemo the clock means nothing to me, and that’s even more true now. If I do anything productive at all (like writing this blog), it tends to happen in the middle of the quiet night.
With this new med, I’ve been getting more random firings of my pain nerves. Legs, shoulders, torso, and a couple of times behind my right eyebrow. I’ll be lying motionless in bed and for no apparent reason both thighs will spasm in pain. I feel my face grimace, but it last only a second or two, and then a few more seconds to fade away. The pain itself isn’t all that intense, but it is annoying as hell.
Most of the time I’m in a decent mood, and if I put humility aside, well, hell, all things considered, I’m usually in a pretty damn good mood! I’ve fought too many protracted wars with clinical depression to be discouraged by such a little, pesky thing as Death looming in my foreseeable future. Y’know, there’s a thought, for all of you who do not understand clinical depression: this whole cancer and chemo experience is pretty much the physical form of depression. For those of you who don’t “believe” in depression, put that in your pipe and smoke it!
Okay, noting that I am most often in a fairly pleasant state of mind, I have to say that I don’t always wake up that way. Nope. During the days immediately following a treatment, when I’m sleeping two hours at time and feel sick and as weak as an infant, I wake up channeling sailors: “Fuck! Fuck, fuck, fuckity fuck! More of this fucking fuck-shit! Cock-biting fucking shit! Fuucckkkk!” I think it comes from leaving the bliss of sleep and silly dreams to be confronted with the uncomfortable minute-to-minute reality of my current and remaining life. I know, on a deeper and deeper level, that I am never, ever going to get “back to baseline”, and this is my new (and NOT improved) standard.