Anxiety Free? Me? Gee…

Wednesday, November 3, 2004 – 6:57 pm

So it’s the night before I start my radiation treatment, and I don’t feel anxious at all. In fact, I’m kind of looking forward to it. At least once it’s started it will go forward no matter what. No more waiting, no more new doctors, tests, examinations and periods of unease in between. I’m not worried about the side effects at all, either.

It’s already Wednesday…I thought I’d really make the most of my last week off, but I really haven’t done much with the last 4 months, why start now? It kind of feels like the last week of Summer holidays, when you’re all ready to go back to school and all you can do is wait. Excited, but sad. I’m not saying the last four months have been FUN, necessarily—or that I ever want to repeat them—but it’s been as much fun as it could have been, and I’ll kind of miss it when it’s gone.

Mood: Glee!

I Like the Radiation

Friday, November 5, 2004 – 1:07 am

You know, if all that was involved in cancer treatment was the radiation therapy, I’d probably start smoking or hanging around nuclear waste. Honestly. I lie down on a bed, some people draw on me, then they leave the room for 60 seconds. That’s…IT. No pain, no nausea, no dizziness, and best of all NO NEEDLES. Just lying down for one minute a day for a month. Whoop-dee-frickin’-doo.

The only real drawback is the transit time. My trip from work to the hospital is about an hour, then the trip home. Then once a week I have to bus to the General Cancer clinic to see my doctor, then go to the Civic for my treatment. I’m going to be getting quite friendly with the bus system.

So really—if you want to know what it’s like—lie down on a hard surface with your shirt off in a cold room for about a minute. Oh, and if you want I can come over and draw on you.

I draw kitties and balloons. Your pick.

Mood: Kitty!

Failure of Process

Saturday, November 6, 2004 – 5:36 pm

So, rather than jump right back into work, I decided to take an extra week off to “get myself back into regular sleep patterns”. Bad idea. The only thing I’ve managed to do this past week is wake up LATER in the day than every before. Can you believe I went from going to bed at 4am and waking up around 2pm, to now going to bed sometime after 6am and waking up after 3pm??

Monday morning is going to SUCK. If I work with or near you, please excuse the short temper and occasional snoring.

Mood: Zzzzzzz….

Full Speed Ahead

Monday, November 8, 2004 – 5:43 pm

Some people, when I tell them I’m going back to work, ask how many days a week I plan on working. When I reply with 5 I’m usually met with some kind of astonished or bewildered look. Yes, I’m going back full time. No, I don’t feel sick any more. Yes, I still have treatment to go through. No, it’s really not that bad.

Of course, whenever I do something, it’s typically in the “balls to the wall” kind of mentality that can only come with years of diligent work in the field of “overdoingness”. It’s not just enough that I go back to work, no. I have to go back to work full-time, and get my ass on a bus every day to the Cancer clinic for radiation, and get to my doctor’s appointments that are for some reason at the OTHER hospital, and try to do normal other things like eat and sleep.

Like today, for instance. I managed to put in a full day at work of reunion and restarting (not to mention reloading software), bus my sorry butt to the clinic, get irradiated, bus home, do the dishes, clean up the house, and get ready to do it all over again. I should be wearing myself out, but if anyone knows me they’ll know that this level of overactivity only spurs me on to do more.

I like being productive again. I like being able to say I DID something of worth and made me feel worthy. I’m embracing my “normal” life once again, and I don’t intend on letting a little thing like radiation get in the way. Cancer at this point is no longer an obstacle or a threat, it’s an inconvenience.

Plus, having a brand new iMac G5 at work is a pretty good reason to go back. Oh my God that thing is gorgeous….


Radiation vs. Chemotherapy

Sunday, November 21, 2004 – 1:08 am

Honestly, I could do this Radiation thing standing on my head. Compared to Chemo, this is a total cakewalk.

Oh NO! MILD Heartburn! Whatever shall I do!? Maybe I haven’t come into the full brunt of side effects yet, but I feel pretty confident that I’ll make it through the rest of the treatments with minimum setbacks. I’m about halfway done now (9 treatments out of 20), and to date I’ve started to notice a burning sensation in my throat, and some redness in the treatment area.

I mean, no needles, no vomiting, no horrible horrible side-effects. I wish all cancers were treated with only radiation! I’d VOLUNTEER.

Mood: Trooper.

Does Paranoia Annoy Ya?

Wednesday, November 24, 2004 – 10:04 pm

(with apologies to Michael P.)

The worst part about getting sick is by far the thought of getting sick again. I don’t think I can even attempt to calculate the reaction to another six months of chemotherapy, plus stem cell transplants (if the cancer recurs within one year). So the last thing I want is the symptoms to reappear. Now, the only symptoms I ever showed was a cough and itching and – wouldn’t you know it – this week I started coughing and itching.

But let’s not forget I’m right in the middle of a round of RADIATION. This should easily annoy my airways enough to make me sound like a 64-year old chain smoking bingo addict. And it’s Winter now – snow or not – which causes dry, itchy skin.

So what am I worried about?


Mood: BING!


An Open Letter to all Depressed Rich People

– 10:28 pm

“Ooh WOE is ME! I’m so RICH I can do whatever I want whenever I want and I never have to worry about the things that keep most people up at night. I’m healthy and wealthy and I just can’t believe how DEPRESSING that is! It’s so HARD to be ME!”

If I hear one more actor is being treated for depression I am going to personally hunt said actor down and kill them using only the lid from a can of Campbell’s Soup. No. The plastic straw from a juice box! Honestly. It’s bad enough we have to constantly hear about how fabulous their lives are with their 8,000 room mansions and their sixteen cars which are each worth six times what I make in a year; but we also have to listen to them WHINE about it.

Yes, money doesn’t buy happiness, and it can’t buy me love according to most scholars and mop tops, but it DOES solve a FUCK OF A LOT OF PROBLEMS, which frees up time to fall in love and dance in the moonlight without your shoes on, or whatever the fuck they do. I have more problems than most people twice my age, and believe me if I had even 1% of what some of these stars make – no, make that 0.1% – I could maybe get a good night’s sleep.

Money isn’t the Answer, money is the path to the Answer. If people didn’t need it, they could focus on expanding their minds through art and culture, instead of spending a third of their lives staring at pixels dancing on a screen. We could focus on the important things in life, like love, compassion, and peace. Instead we are forced to slave day after day making other people rich while we struggle to stay out of debt.

I would gladly trade places with one of these “depressed” rich people, even just to show them that life is what you make it, and if you’re blessed with something like financial independence, you should try not to act like you’ve got the fucking Plague.

…or Cancer…