June 6: Out of the Sick Room & Into the Woods

6 Jun 2019 6:03 AM | Contact Me (Administrator)


It was good for me do that tricky path, mentally as well as physically. It took me further out of that 'sick room' mentality. It's not a real forest, but still, it was enough to push me a bit further out of my comfort zone.  I felt more alive for it. My poor body deserves this feeling of being part of nature as well as being medically important. 


Thursday morning. Bright and sunny, warmer today but still not unbearably hot. Yippee, good for me. 

Yesterday I did my mountain walk, and I walked a further loop, up one higher, and I came down the "steep" way, where I was on the narrow trail with little streams to ford, loose rocks to watch out for and decisions to be made about which way down. It was good for me. It worked on my agility, and it worked on my fear too. That was a bit of an accidental discovery, I thought there was a better main path down, but there wasn't. But it was a good mistake. It was good for me do that tricky path, mentally as well as physically. It took me further out of that 'sick room' mentality. It's not real forest, but still, it was enough to push me a bit further out of my comfort zone.

And here is what I noticed that has changed fundamentally about the way I think now. I used to avoid those little side trails. Moose used to find kids smoking dope along them. Once he 'flushed' a homeless guy who ran away from us pulling up his pants. And I feared the 'pervert in the bushes' that mom always warned me about too. She would have said it was asking for rape walking alone on those back trails in a park in the middle of the city. But now I don't care. My poor body has been ‘abused’ and tortured so much this past fall and winter that fear of rape is not really on my mind anymore. I have said this often, our bodies do not understand that our brains agree to these treatments, our brains know it's for our own good, but on a deep unconscious level our bodies do not understand. They think we are being attacked and tortured. On that deep body level all these medical procedures are no different than that. In some ways you have to treat yourself the way you would treat an animal coming home from the vet. Be extra kind, be extra soothing, make them feel loved and not punished, knock yourself out so that they don't feel it as a massive punishment for being 'bad' and only then they will get better. They need that to get better. So do I. 

I am not going as crazy with self-indulgence as I will if I find out that the cancer is still there, or that it has spread. But I am going a little crazy. I can make this waiting period nicer for me. I can have that mini holiday in the country. Spend it doing a bit of gardening for T, but not too much, writing, knitting and just being in nature. If Tom says it's a go, then I’ll do a bit of cooking ahead, for the weekend trip anyway. We are going to have a weekend trip for sure. And it may be that I'll come back with my husband and then rent a car to go back out later for a week if I can get a break with the doctor appointments. We'll see. I do intend to be nice to me. I deserve it. My poor body deserves this feeling of being loved and part of nature as well as being medically important. 

Yesterday I went through all my winter clothes and got out the summer clothes. I could do that. My arm could do it. Yippee! The first normal life victory was closing the car door and reaching around behind me to grab my seatbelt and put it on like a normal person, and now I can use my arm for going through my clothes. My sister had to do that for me in a mini basis after the surgery. Now I can it myself. Yippee. But I didn't over do it. I remembered our 'group' leader who activated her lymphedema seventeen years later moving too many boxes on moving day. Gotta be careful not to over do it. Especially this early on in the game while things are still healing and reforming. So I just piled the can't wear it now clothes in a huge pile on the guest room bed. I'll get some boxes, and I'll go through them and put them into boxes for storage before my brother comes on June 24th. That will be work for another day. I won't try to do too much all at once, even if I am feeling much better. 

In the meantime I have clothes for this warmer weather, they are easy to find, I don't have to did through a depressing pile of don't fit clothes from last summer every time I try to get dressed in the morning. I have this smaller wardrobe of clothes that fit me now. And they are good quality new clothes, and soft, light, nice textures that I can wear in the city. I realized all my hot weather clothes are for the Caribbean. I've really tried to avoid the hot season in the city. Now I will have a basic hot city wardrobe to wear. And that's  probably good. All the clothes I bought, except for the jacket can easily be altered to a smaller size once I lose this weight. 

A week at the cottage, in nature. I would feel like I've comforted and spoiled myself every minute of the day. Rain or shine. Rain would be nice to be inside knitting and warm and cosy. Sun would be nice to be outside, puttering in the garden. Watching the water on the lake. That would be a good week for me long as I have the time between doctor appointments. In theory the real radiation doesn't start up for another couple of weeks. 

Then, after that, even if I feel okay for the first while, I'll start running out of time. Half a day for medical stuff. And then my exercise routine, either the walk or the bike, or even swimming if I can, and the core exercise, and a nap. Those weight exercises to keep the radiation from doing too much damage. Realisitically that is the whole day gone. Just taking care of my health. Five days a week, for a month, or a month and a half. And then it will be six weeks recovery after that.   

In the meantime, I have today. It's a beautiful day, but I'm not doing the mountain walk. I'm doing the stationary bike and the core exercises. I'm getting back into my usual exercise rhythms. I'm starting to do this in the morning before my bath, as I'm starting to exercise more I work up more of a sweat now. I will formalize my new routine and send it to my physiotherapist. That's on my to do list now. That, and clean out this bottle garden, water the regular houseplants. That's as far as I'm going to go with gardening for now. 

That's the full list. Email T and find out the scope with Camp Comfort for the weekend. It appears to be still available for this weekend. We can have a weekend in the country anyway. Leave Saturday, come back Sunday. George doesn't really want to go. I'll wait and see, if on Friday it looks like the pathology is not in, and my appointment with Dr. B will be postponed again until the following week, then I think more seriously about ways to stay at the cottage for a week. 

Yesterday I started getting sharp pains in my 'new boob' This is the first time since surgery that has happened. They are sharp stabbing pains that last thirty seconds or so, and maybe there is a little sequence of them but it's never more than a minute altogether. Reminds me of the pains I had when the taxol first started. I had them a couple of times last night, and then again once this morning. This is almost exactly four weeks after surgery that this starts up. What the heck? 

Perhaps it is the 'blood' whatever that Dr. M noticed when he said that my breast had bled when they did the surgery and he said that would gradually be re-absorbed over the next few weeks. Or it is simply part of the healing process, internal stitches coming undone, stuff like that. So long as it comes and goes like this, that is how I'm going to understand it. Of course, of course now, my first thought is that it's the cancer come back in there and doing harm as it grows fast while the rest of the tissue is still damaged and healing slowly. But I'm not believing that. That is paranoia. 

Also, my left leg was so sore the night before last that it kept me woke me up, and it was a bit sore all day. Both my shins too, and my butt. I know that this is from exercise. This is muscle soreness. But of course, of course I thought it was a blood clot. Blood clot from the chemotherapy, blood clot from the surgery, waiting to kill me. Of course I thought that. But I am not believing that any more. That is paranoia. 

Don't go down that paranoia road. Just don't do it. Don't go there. 

No matter how long you have to go without real information, do not start making shit up just so you know something. That is paranoia. Don’t do that. 

A beautiful day today. And I have been feeling a lot better lately. I've come back to life again after a bit of a downward spiral where it seemed like I could hardly do anything but wait to find out bad news. Or perhaps it was the set back of realizing how much of a deal the radiation will be. 

Camp Comfort is officially free for the weekend. Yippee. And my husband is agreeable, says to tell them we'll bring lobsters for Saturday's supper. That is something anyway. And I'll know on Friday if the Tuesday doctor appointment gets postponed and I can try for a week out there on my own. One step at a time for now. 

Fingers crossed.

Dispatched: June 6

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