Tuesday, July 27, 2010

emotional wildfire

The last few days have been abominable to say the least. I am overwhelmed, under slept, sore, swollen, bruised and barely able to hold onto a thread emotionally. I just want one day to not have to think/feel/deal with life right now. Even when I don't have an appointment, my phone rings 30 times to set up other appointments. And the luxury of screening calls--out the window! All the appointment call centers have different numbers so now I have to answer..........aaaahh!

I now get 3 shots of hormones a day and take 2 pills. This has caused an emotional wildfire................it should be over this weekend (fingers crossed). One less thing fret over, to have to remember, to have to gather the energy to finish.

I have felt so drained and angry that I didn't blog (my release)...."just screw it" throw a damn video on there, done and done. Something pretty for people to see when all I felt like writing was massive amounts of profanity and throwing myself the best blog pity party ever.

I have somehow bypassed the last few days and fell into this spot on my couch, with my dogs, a glass of wine, pillows, and Roisin Murphy coming quite loudly out of my laptop speakers. As I write I feel the stress and tension be released from my shoulders and wrists. The knots in my stomach loosen and then fall as tears from my face. I begin to shake as my body detoxes and forces the binded emotions that have been barricaded within. I have had glimmers of happiness these past few days: time with my husband, dinner with long lost, and dearly loved friends--but the cloud loomed close.

I went to get a wig with Scott. I was actually excited, or so I told myself to be. When we arrived I felt the excitement sprint right out of my heart and shoot out my newly polished toes--I think it waited for us in the car because it sure as hell wasn't anywhere to be found in the store. The staff was friendly, the choices of hair intriguing, but it all reminded me of cancer. The poor bald girl I was going to turn into--then I got mad. Why the hell do I need a damn wig anyway?! What the fuck is wrong with being bald? Is is because people would stare? Self-consciousness on my part? Well I found a wig, and I presume I will wear it. When I wear it it won't be to "feel more like me"--nothing can bring that back for me...I guess it will be to "feel more human."

I find myself asking people "do you want to see the scars?" Why, I don't know. Probably because I know deep down most people want to see them and will never ask. Maybe because they are terrifying to me at this point and I want to hear "they look good" which I know is a fucking lie, but I'll take what I can get. Also, maybe a bit of a scare tactic---be sure to check for lumps, or else.... And in some way it makes me feel empowered, I didn't have the choice to get cancer, but I can chose who I show my scars to, and my yaybies (as I like to call them). They may not look like anything you have ever seen, but they are attached to me, which makes them alright in my book. I am becoming acquainted with these foreign yaybies--I have little to no sensation on any of my skin on the yaybies or in my armpits. This makes many things difficult--I have to look in the mirror to preform most tasks and am always waiting for the instant shot of red, hot searing pain that comes shooting through (maybe 10 to 12 times a day). Apparently this pain is my nerve-endings getting reacquainted--well I wish they would shake and get it over with because I can barely take it anymore.

I met my new oncologist--seems like a nice guy, a guy who writes the prescriptions for the poison that will be making its way throughout my body, killing healthy and unhealthy cells, causing my hair to shed, my skin to pucker, blister, and flake--but a nice guy none the less. Chemo begins August 12. I will be getting a barrage of medications one day every 3 weeks for a total of 6 months. One day is 5-8 hours of chemo.....then the side effects come. That is what I am a bit worried about--everyone has different side effects and I don't know how my body will react.....it's terrifying.

Prior to chemo we have some housecleaning things to do. I need to have a MUGA Scan (that tests how strong my heart is) because some of the medications I will be taking will kill good active cells in my heart--that is why you sometimes hear that chemo causes heart failure--cause it is true. I have to have a PET Scan to investigate the spot in my femur further. This test can also see if there are other smaller spots of cancer that may have been missed with previous tests. I have to have my port for chemo inserted and then depending on the PET Scan results a bone biopsy in my leg. This could mean that I have Stage 4 cancer, rather than the original 3...

I am exhausted, have bags under my eyes I could use to carry groceries. I just want to wake up and start all over--no lump, no flaky nipple, no nothing. Just me, fresh from graduate school, who landed and was working her dream job and trying to have a baby and create a family with her husband. Now I feel broken. I am pulled into so many different directions I have forgotten which way I need to look. I have lost all control, grasping at straws that pertain to everything (emotions, relationships, body image, self-sufficiency, motivation, happiness, and direction). The only concrete object I have to hold onto is cancer... It is a very scary place to be folks, take it from me.

So here I am experiencing this wild/crazy/cathartic part of my life. I feel broken. I no longer feel like me, not to mention not looking like me. I will become someone new out of all this, I am just not sure if I will want to get to know her very well...


  1. I loved the old you, I love the now you and I will love the new you even more!
    I hear you get the wig to keep strangers from bugging you with questions all the time. But what the hell do I know. I don't have cancer!
    I will be losing my hair the same day you lose yours so maybe I'll find out about the questions thing.
    My stylist was feeling around my head and is pretty sure it's going to be a pretty unattractive wedge shape when it's shaved and then grow straight out in a "chia pet" fashion for quite a while when we start growing it back! I can hardly wait!
    I think I'm gonna go the "do rag" route to keep my noggin from gettig too much sun, cuz you know what that can cause! :)
    I don't care how sick you are, I'm coming over for a his/hers bald photo shoot when it happens. Maybe your friend can take some moob shots of me while i'm there?

    I love you kiddo,


  2. The enormity of what you have had to absorb and process in just ONE MONTH is absolutely staggering, dear Dori, and it is amazing and humbling to watch you ride this batshit crazy ride.

    This entry reminded me of Leonard Cohen:

    "Forget your perfect offering.
    There is a crack, a crack in everything
    That's how the light gets in."


  3. Lighting a candle for you tonight. Let the strength of others carry you when you can't bare the load yourself. You are surround by people who love you - people that don't even know you and that is tangible. Call on our strength when you need it.

  4. Wow. Thank you for sharing this. I certainly wish I could say something helpful, but alas you've left me speechless. You can do it, with the unfailing love of all those around you, you can do it. I feel like you're doing an amazing job of balancing the tears, laughs, catharsis, strength, etc. you're like a master emotion juggler. Amazing.

  5. I'm not surprised that you feel broken. You have gone through so much in such a short amount of time. Do you realize how strong you are? Do you realize how amazing you are? You are incredible!