I’m so incredibly sad.
It’s not just losing my hair. I cut it short a couple of days ago, but it’s coming out by the handfuls every time I comb it or even touch it. The clippers are out and ready to go along with a cute colorful scarf I bought last year, long before I knew I was about to embark on this journey. So a buzz is in my immediate future, and not the good kind. (The photo above is what I just pulled out from the back of my head in a minute or two while contemplating this post….there would be more if I kept at it….but I’m making a mess here….)
It’s not the sores on my chest or on the roof of my mouth. It’s not the three days I spent in the hospital earlier this week, or the antibiotics that give me headaches. I know dodged a bullet by getting help before catching something while all my counts were extremely low, and my time in reverse isolation wasn’t really “difficult”as much as surreal. Haven’t spent time in a hospital since my youngest was born 28 years ago.
I’m definitely NOT looking forward to it, but it’s not the idea of Round 2 coming up this Friday, or that I haven’t had the “upswing” of a bunch of really good days between rounds that I had hoped to experience. With 5 rounds to go, maybe I’ll experience that next time.
No, this sadness is all of the above and none of the above….something inclusive and yet nameless that leaves me wanting to just lay down and not move for hours at a time. For someone like me, someone used to being busy and active and engaged, who went into this deal feeling healthy and vibrant, that’s a little scary. It’s not like me. None of this is “like me”.
I haven’t even felt like writing….and I’m barely praying. “Please, God” happens a lot.
Its almost as if I’m disintegrating right before my very eyes…dissolving….and, I suppose, in a way I am. I am no longer the woman I was and I’m not yet the woman I will be. When I look in the mirror, I never know who I’m going to see because I don’t look like “ME”. Having experienced a Dark Night of the Soul before, my hunch is that I am now entering into a Dark Night of the Body. Which effects the Soul, wouldn’t it? The spirit?
I’m doing my best to remain grateful in the midst of a physical shit storm the likes of which I’ve never experienced. For example, I’m grateful I didn’t puke my guts up after Round 1. I’m grateful for family and friends that are so very supportive, kind and loving. And patient! Especially my husband, who is staying steady even when I swing from snappy to weepy to sleeping and back again.
I’m extremely grateful that I don’t have to work through this ordeal. Financially we’re okay with my disability checks.
And right now – at this very moment – I am ecstatic for the torrential downpour happening right outside my window. We’ve had a storm front move into SoCal these last couple of days, and the much needed rain is a BLESSING to my home state. And for me personally, the dark clouds and the blustering winds and the sheets of water match the firestorm raging on inside of me….cooling me. Bringing relief and calm and release.
Release. How many times a day to I pray for release? Release from the pain. Release from the funky shit going on with my body. Release from all the months of treatment still in front of me. Release from the lethargy.
My friends keep telling me how strong and brave I am…how much courage I’m displaying, and what great attitude I’ve held. Today, I don’t feel any of those things. Perhaps it’s just been a really long week filled with some really stressful and traumatic experiences. Maybe after I shave my head later tonight I will feel some of the “empowerment” I keep hearing about. Maybe I will have a few better days until Friday.