The wind is blowing again - as it has been for the last several weeks. Living in the West Texas Panhandle, I'm used to wind - but it sure is getting on my last nerve lately.
It may be because things are stressful at work. One of my staff left at the end of March, and I'm having to do part of her job as well as mine. Part of me loves it - I'm getting to advise students, and I love working with them. That part of me is having a ball. But the other part of me - the part that remembers that I'm fighting a sneaky type of cancer - knows that I'm putting in too many hours at work, and worrying too much about whether the students are getting the attention they deserve in a timely manner. That side is also pretty concerned with how in the world am I going to keep up with my regular job at the same time.
So there is that.
There is also my ever-present worry about my health - when we got my blood test results back at my last treatment, I only had one result that wasn't normal. Somehow, all of my blood work has improved over the last few weeks. You would think this would make me happy. As a worrywart, instead all it does is make me wonder - if it's not kicking my blood counts down, and not making my hair fall out, is it killing the cancer cells like it's supposed to?
Yeah yeah - quit looking a gift horse in the mouth, and just be grateful. Easier said than done.
Of course, it might be that my finger tips are starting to hurt more and more the longer I receive treatment. My nails are shot - full of ridges and blotches, and I'm pretty sure a couple of them intend to fall off in a matter of weeks. It's really not a side effect I'm in the mood for, but it is a possibility with the Taxol.
Or maybe it's because the Dallas Stars are getting their butts kicked by those damn Ducks tonight.
I'm struggling with envy right now. More and more I am hearing of ovarian cancer patients that were Stage IV at diagnosis as I was - that went into full remission - and there are more and more of them that stay in remission for years at a time. And I envy them - oh how I envy them. Remission! That glorious state of being where you can believe that you have beaten the beast. That you will not die in a year. Or two. Or three. Instead you will be the miracle...the statistic breaker...the one who lives 10 years and beyond.
I so wanted to go into a full remission. When I read those stories I feel cheated. Why didn't *I* get a full remission? Why didn't *I* get a year - or two or ten - of remission? Of life without chemo and constipation and nausea and steroid weight gain and no eye lashes and tubes? Why why why???
I don't know why. And I certainly don't know why NOW I'm fighting the green monster. I didn't spend that first year wondering why I got ovarian cancer. It was the luck of the draw - and bad genetics. It is what it is. It did no good wasting time on wondering why. I'm not sure why I'm struggling with it now.
I wonder if it's just not my mind's way of avoiding the real issue - what comes next? I'll be switching to a new doctor and treatment center this summer, and taking a chemo break. Instead of looking forward to it, I'm kind of dreading it. For two months this summer, I won't be getting treatment. The plan is to get my last tube removed, and to get some dental work done, and to give my body a break. It should be something to look forward to, but all I can do is think about what will happen without the chemo - the last time I had a chemo break, my numbers started going up immediately. Is it going to happen that way again? Is switching doctors a mistake? Will I be as happy with the new treatment center as I was with the one I use now? Are the chairs as comfortable? Will they bring me drinks like they do now? Will they pay as close attention as the nurses do at my current center?
Is all I have to look forward to is a lifetime of chemo and bloody noses in the morning and painful finger tips?
I don't want to be envious of those who celebrate their years of remission. I want to be happy for them, and look at them as reason to hope. But somehow these ugly envious thoughts creep into my head instead, and I don't know how to stop them. I try to be grateful I'm still here - 18 months since my diagnosis. I've already beaten some odds. It's my intent to beat even more. To be one of those that declares I'm Still Here - 5 years from diagnosis! 10 years from diagnosis! 15! 20!
*sigh* I hope I'm not fooling myself.