Wednesday, April 4, 2012

No Chemo Again

On Monday, I was not able to have chemotherapy again. My platelet count was too low. I like that I can say "was" because I trust it is on its way back up. How does this affect me? I bruise very easily and have to be careful not to cut myself because my body's ability to clot has been stolen by the chemo. Since I do not move around very much, this is generally not a problem.

Which is another problem in itself: I do not move around very much. I miss having energy. I am currently anemic. Yesterday, when working in my daughter's bedroom, I had an allergy attack, which really turned into what I imagine an asthmatic goes through. My chest felt really heavy and stillness was my only comfort. Luckily, I have a medicine for that too. An inhaler that I keep stashed away in my bathroom drawer for such occasions. It helped some....but my anemic tendencies seemed to win out.

Seems like I have a medicine for everything these days. I wonder what my body would feel like without any drugs in my system sometimes. Generally, I take the most meds in the morning and at night for that is when the nausea bother me the most. Sometimes, during the day, I purposefully do not take anything out of protest and figuring whatever symptom may be bothering me, I can sleep off.

However, this brings me back to the fact that I am not moving much. A couple of weeks ago, I was out to dinner with some friends and one of my friends was speaking about a conversation he had with his doctor about his cholesterol levels. The doctor had told him that the best solution was to "move more". I cannot help but think that this may help me too. Every day, I try to find the motivation to do so. Even if it just means getting up to do the dishes or walking upstairs to check on the kids or folding a load of laundry. "Move more" is a concept I understand, just not able/willing to follow through on. Most the time I am not sure which.

I try not to be too hard on myself, knowing that the fact that I have stage four cancer is a fight that is hard for any physical being. However, from time to time, I wonder if I use it as an excuse. Anyone in their right mind probably I cannot be to hard on myself for that either. Still, as time goes on, I find it hard to distinguish between what is an excuse and my actual physical abilities. Generally not strong enough to do much of anything, my body loses muscle every day. I am pretty sure that my feet have shrunk a half size, my traditionally over-muscular calves seem thinner in my boots and I am just all around smaller. I really enjoy wearing the smaller sizes, mind you. I am just not happy how I got here.

In a recent conversation about him feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work it takes to run our household (which he does most of), I recommended my husband learn to appreciate what he is accomplishing rather letting what he is not accomplishing overwhelm him. It seems like I should heed my own advice. I should celebrate the fact that I helped my daughter sort through her hundreds of stuffed animals and go through a mountain of clothes. And other accomplishments of the like. And accomplishing said tasks does make me feel good. However. truth be told, it is the small chores that I miss. Menial tasks like doing dishes and taking a shower now strike a debate in my head. Do I have the energy now or should I nap first? Or will I have time to nap after? If I eat now, will I still feel nauseous and/or will my dizziness subside? Maybe if I eat now, I will have the energy to shower. Thoughts of the sort are commonplace.

So I know that the fact that I skipped chemo this week help a bit in this debate. I will have more energy. I just hope that my next scan does not reflect my missed chemo. I can only hope.....

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