Monday, November 23, 2009

Three Year Old Random Thoughts


What? Yes, I do realize it is Monday...

Between grading and nanowrimo (14,494 words, hopelessly under the goal - yet 14,494 words more than if I wasn't participating) blogging has taken a definate back seat this month.

While organizing my writing folders I came across some random notes/ideas I jotted down during my breast cancer ordeal. So I thought I would take Monday morning off from nano and post them.

The following are excerpts from a random brain dealing with breast cancer circa 2006....

* * * * *

The anticipation/anxiety at the beginning. How the adrenaline rushes the day of a doctor’s appointment was the same chemical imbalance one gets when excited about something good yet scary. Or like anticipating having to get up in front of an audience of one’s peers and speak. My heart raced. Light-headed. Butterflies in the stomach. Wasn’t a feeling of dread or sadness or foreboding. On the one hand, this might be a good sign. If my body and emotions felt an anticipatory high, any news coming that day must not be bad. The lymph nodes would all be negative. The margins would be negative. On the other hand, it could be wishful thinking gone amuck. A reckless clinging, or was it bracing, against another round of bad news.

* * * * *

Is all this necessary, or am I just a big cash cow? When I walk in the oncologist’s office does she see me, the person, or am I a giant walking dollar sign? A new car? A few months tuition to one of her kid’s swanky private schools? Probably the one my own son wanted to go to that we cannot afford. Perhaps the one my daughter attended but we pulled her out of because of the huge debt we were falling into trying to pay for it. It didn’t help when the chemo nurses continually dropped little morsels of information. “Your doctor always orders that shot.” At $6,613 a visit, chemotherapy seemed a fortune for someone, many someones. Huge debts for me, but I couldn’t help wondering if the only reason I succumbed was superstition. Going against the doctors advice would mean if it came back everyone could nod their heads at me as if to say, “it’s your fault, should have had the chemo.”

*****

Is it so hard to see me as a person? Read my chart before you come in the room? Jot down a note of my wishes and objections so you remember, or can at least remind yourself, the next time? And by the way, since we are here on my dollar, maybe we could talk about me; I know way more about you, your family, and your problems than I need to Doc.

*****

Hunkering down and weathering the storm.

*****

Finding the root cause, because maybe it’s still going on around me. Inside me...

*****

People say, “oh, I don’t want to burden you when you are going through cancer and chemo,” and they then proceed to tell me all their problems.

*****

The problem with being positive and trying not to appear sick – people start making demands of you instead of appreciating you not being a burden.

*****


I miss visiting you all, hope to catch up in bits and most definately after November 30th.

For more Randomness, head on over to Keely at The Unmom's.

36 comments:

only a movie said...

I've missed you!
Thank you for sharing your inner dialogue from such a precious time in your life.
xo

mo.stoneskin said...

I particularly like the way you wrote "Hunkering down". Aptly put.

Brian Miller said...

tough to read as i have several family members that are struggling with cancer right now. glad you are a survivor...

have a wonderful day!

Sprite's Keeper said...

Missed you too, but this is a great way to see what people who have never gone through it would never know.

Ice Queen said...

It's strange when we find old thoughts we've jotted down. It's almost like someone else wrote them, but you feel all the emotions over again.

Mrsbear said...

Nothing more random than Tuesday thoughts on Monday!

Interesting to read, it's so much more personal than just the word "cancer" that stops everyone in their tracks. Thanks for sharing it.

Mama Dawg said...

Miss you!

Kristan said...

{big sigh} Wow. I honestly feel very honored to have read your inner thoughts during that time.

As for whether or not the chemo was "worth it," I think it's like you said back then: you just can't risk not doing it, because of the potential consequences. Not just people's judgment, but your health.

{big hug}

Anna See said...

Wow! I appreciate the insight into what you were going through. I know this will help us be more considerate and caring when it comes to others' struggles.

The Blonde Duck said...

The doctor's office one hit home for me.

I hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving!

Mama Badger said...

Miss you, too. Interesting time to bring out these thoughts. We're thankful that you did go through with the chemo, and that it did work.

As for the expense, you just can't go there. The way I think of it is, this person sees people live and die each day. They deal with some of the worst stuff around. They deal with a disease that's an enigma on the best of days. If they get to drive a jag for that, so be it. It's not a job I'd want- ever.

Amy said...

Sounds great..

see you soon...

thanks for sharing your thoughts.

A Mom on Spin said...

How did you do it? Weather that storm????

Erin@TheLocalsLoveIt said...

Thanks for sharing. I only wish people weren't such butt holes sometimes. Why can't we learn to listen instead of talk?
(raises hand with guilt)

smiles4u said...

How far you've come since then. Glad and thankful you are still here. I sure have missed you...hope teaching and writing and being a parent is going well. XXOO Lori

otin said...

That was very powerful stuff. This is the second post that I read in the last i5 minutes that put my problems in perspective!

Carolyn...Online said...

I just had a friend diagnosed with breast cancer and she said, "Do you know anyone who's been through this?"

Think I'll send her your link.

Good luck with the novel writing.

Maureen@IslandRoar said...

This was so enlightening and poignant. Especially the part about trying not to complain, but then nobody thinks you're going thru something so traumatic.
Thanks for sharing it, and keep going with those novel pages!!!

Jeff D'Antonio said...

Thanks for sharing this. I clearly remember talking to Jill about most of the same things, so you're not alone in having those thoughts.

Btw, I've been clicking the pink ribbon in your sidebar every day since the news of our new government "guidelines" last week. Someone's got to pay for all those mammograms that the insurance companies are going to reject now.

Smart Mouth Broad said...

A very eye-opening post, Pseudo. Especially to me. I may even have to print this out and give it to my whole office.

ds said...

Thanks for sharing this. A very brave thing to do.

Heather said...

I hate the way doctors treat us. It seriously feels like you are a dollar sign. grrr..it makes me mad.

My BF went through all of that and I went to every appointment with her. It was the most enlightening experience of my life! I'm not even sure if I was to get diagnosed, I would got through with it all.

Thanks for sharing!

Cairo Typ0 said...

Thank you for sharing these memories and feelings with us today.

Vodka Mom said...

...have a great Thanksgiving!

Beth said...

You just reminded me to forgive, forget, and move on. Many things are so small in the grand scheme of life.

Great post! One I will come back to when I need a perspective shift.

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am Harriet said...

It would be wonderful to be a cash cow...not that I would know.
Have a great RTT!
http://iamharriet.blogspot.com/2009/11/is-it-finally-over-will-jon-jump-off-of.html

Kat said...

Have a great Thanksgiving and thanks for sharing.

Jan said...

$6,613 for a SHOT? Jesus Christ on a pogo stick.

I've missed you, girl, but understand the time constraints. Have a lovely Thanksgiving, you lovely woman!

Fragrant Liar said...

Resonant thoughts. Points well taken.

Happy T-Day, Pseudo. Keep your chin up about Nanowrimo. 14k is nothing to sneeze at.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

Those journal entries most valuable. To those of us reading as well as a place for your thoughts at the time.

14,000 Nano words? You should be most proud. I haven't added in mine. Hope to get to that this weekend also. My list for the four days keeps getting longer and longer. Have a good Thanksgiving.

sherri said...

thanks as always for sharing so much of yourself with us. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Dingo said...

Sometimes when we hear "cancer" we forget that there's a person there, too, not just a disease. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

lakeviewer said...

Thanks for revisiting and sharing these thoughts. I'm assuming all is well now? Nobody is ever the same after that ordeal.

Stacy (the Random Cool Chick) said...

Very powerful stuff, Pseudo. I'm so glad you made it through after hunkering down. ((HUGZ!!))

Happy Thanksgiving! :)

Amy said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family..

buffalodick said...

have a good Thanksgiving! Any turkeys over there to eat? :)