Yesterday was a good brain day.
Since I started treatment, I don't think as well as I used to. I used to be pretty sharp. For the first few months after my surgery, I was on so many medications, my brain was a little foggy. It was hard to concentrate. I didn't really read anything but Facebook posts for over two months. For me, that was beyond weird. I'm a reader. I was always reading a book or magazine. It took awhile before I was able to concentrate well enough to read magazine articles. Then I worked my way up to "fluff" novels - the kind you don't have to think too hard with - no complicated plots to try to remember. I finally worked my way up to the Game of Thrones series - then I knew I was ready to go back to work. Try reading those books back to back and keep up with who is doing what to whom. That's a pretty good sign your brain is working again.
Since I've been back, one of the things I've struggled with is concentration. Most days I do pretty well. But every so often - usually within a week or so of chemo, and certainly the days right after chemo - I have a foggy day. A day where if a faculty member asks me a question, I let them know that I don't know, but I'll look it up. I know I won't be able to look it up that day....most likely if I happened to remember where to look it up, I might not understand it fully anyway. I've actually put off doing a project for my boss because I knew it was one that I needed a sharp day to even understand what she wanted....and not every day is a sharp day.
It's frustrating. I had heard of chemo brain during my treatment, but actually experiencing it is unsettling. Sometimes it's just taking longer to figure something out. Sometimes it's searching for a word. Sometimes it's using the wrong word. And sometimes it's looking at a form you've completed dozens of times and thinking you're doing it correctly, then having it come back with instructions on how to do it right.
Yeah - that's embarrassing. I'm sure folks in other departments around campus are getting annoyed at getting screwed up stuff. It hasn't happened *alot* - but the fact that it's happening at all bothers me. So - I look up directions on how to do stuff that I used to not think twice about. I make my to do list more often. I go through my email even more often to make sure I don't miss deadlines. I try to remind myself that it's all part of the process - the process of getting better, of recovery. And it won't be this way forever.
This morning I had CT scans to see where we are at with my cancer. I've had the 6 carbo/taxol chemo treatments that are the standard front line of care for ovarian cancer. I still have some fluid around my lungs, so I don't expect to be considered NED (aka - no evidence of disease) just yet. But I'm optimistic that I'm close to that. That my cancer has responded well to chemo, and maybe I just need one or two more treatments to finish it off. I'll find out next Wednesday. Y'all keep me in your prayers until then.
Now - for something non-cancer related! My youngest son J competed in the District/Area track meet for his school a few weeks ago - and placed 2nd in District and 4th in Area! We are so proud of him. This qualified him to go to Regionals for the first time. That was the goal he had set for himself, and I'm so glad he reached it. Unfortunately, he had a bad day throwing at Regionals - nerves I guess. But next year he'll be a senior, and he has this experience to learn from.
If I haven't mentioned it before, we have a cow and chickens on our place out in the boonies. Currently Steak (our cow) is off at my cousin's place meeting some boys. We're hoping she's playing the hussy and getting herself knocked up. Ha! Maybe once she's had a calf, I'll change her name to Lactation. (Yes - we're terribly inappropriate in our naming of livestock. We are rednecks. We don't hide that. We wear it like a big ole badge!)
I'm currently considering names for the chickens - right now, Fricasse, Parmesan, and Korma are my favorites. Let me know if you have any suggestions - I've got 13 chickens to name - 3 of 'em roosters.
It looks like we're expecting yet another freeze tomorrow night. I have 8 tomato plants that are trying to find a way out of the house. And I'm about ready to hunt down Mother Nature and provide her with some damn Midol because seriously? It's May. There is no need for this freezing crap in May.
See? Life goes on. Even with cancer. In SPITE of cancer. Because that's the way it should be.