Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Friday, October 1, 2010
I haven't been in a good way since we last posted. I got sick and couldn't get rid of the cold. It lasted a couple of weeks. I was sick through chemo treatments.
Then my B symptoms started up. B symptoms are the type of side effects for people with Hodge type B. That's the bad hodge. And usually the onset of symptoms is a bad thing. It means that the cancer is growing more aggressively and is all over your body in big chunks. It basically feels like the cancer has taken over the majority of your body. I'm supposed to see my doctor on Monday. He doesn't have office hours on Monday but he's coming in to see me. He's also bringing his second in charge and my whole team. They've had meetings about me.
Believe it or not, I have been too overcome with B symptoms to even worry about the latest progression of cancer. These "symptoms" are basically side effects from the cancer. Easily the worst is the itch. Now, I know that would surprise you. How bad can a little itching be? If only it was a little itching. Every day, every second, I itch all over my body. It's not like a skeeter bite, either. This itch starts with a shock to the skin, much like a knife tingling and then an unrelenting urge to itch. And it happens constantly and completely randomly throughout my body. So if you imagine that my body were a Christmas tree with random blinking lights, that's what's happening every second of the day and night. It is hell.
The doctors keep trying different steroids but none are working, which isn't a surprise. The docs basically will tell anyone that nothing alleviates this itch. Remember the good old days when I can just pop an oxycodone if I wasn't feeling well? I tried. I tried really hard. I popped a lot of oxy and it doesn't really do anything.
This morning at 5 am, I had a marvelous conversation with a guy at the drive through at McDonald's. I was on benedryl, steriods, sleeping pills, oxycodone and hydrocodone. But I was wide awake because I was itching all over, much like the many nights before. During this, the itching stopped. It was an unbelievable feeling. Peace. I ordered my breakfast burrito and the itch soon came back, faster than the breakfast burrito came up.
Now the second of three main B symptoms have started. Night sweats. Because cancer now owns your body, it fucks with your temperature. Some older women have described it as the worst, most hyperactive case of menopause. While you're overcome with this itch, a wave of heat from within your body will blow through you. You sit and sweat for ten minutes. This happens about every hour or so. What you have left is one really slimy body.
The first inclination would be to take a shower to help with the temp and itch. But the water hitting your body stings like knives even more. Plus, your temp goes up so while you're trying to clean your body, at the same time, it's sweating.
Right now, it's midnight and I need to sleep. I'd like to tell you more. Like how, for instance, the treatment leaves my feet in constant pain and my hands always tingly. Once a day or so, I cramp up somewhere, in the hands, feet, leg mostly. And because my body is losing a war inside, I have no energy to do anything on the outside.
When I was in pain previously, I go to bed. But I am so afraid of what happens when I wake up that I would rather go back to the McDiddies at 5 am again to talk. If I end up sleeping, in a couple of hours I will wake up sop and wet. The sheets will be wet, there could even be a puddle. My shirt is wet and I'm freezing. These are the night sweets.
At this point, I lost the benefit of being able to completely sleep. So I slumber. With sleeping, I don't feel the itch. With slumber, I feel everything. I can't go back to bed because I wake up to the itching body, the itching stinging body. I slomber for a couple more hours. Now as I slumber, I itch and sleep, then sweat, itch and sleep. Finally, I give up. Waking up and giving in to the day of the itch.
I don't fight any more. I've been fighting cancer for going on three years now. Every day, I have had to wake up with the mental exercises of overcoming the fear of cancer. Every day, I have to do other mental exercises trying to overcome the pain of the cancer. Now I no longer have the benefit of waking up to anything. The cancer has invaded my sleep. I get up from slumbering in a sweat, cold with this dominating tingling and itching feeling all over my body and all wanting attention right now. I don't pysche myself up for the day anymore. I don't set goals. I don't think,"I should show Sherri or McKenna how I used to be for an hour today." Now, I just get up.
I have no interesting thoughts anymore. I just have the itch. Some people want to go back to before they had cancer. I'll settle for an hour or two a couple of years ago when I felt normal. I never feel normal anymore. I want to remind my wife that I didn't just sit around and do nothing. A long time ago, I helped her out. Now she can barely stand to look at me because I am a waste. She has to dicipline the kids, she has to watch over Conner, she has to take care of Maddie. She works, then comes home and does all the housework. She is two parents and wonders when the fuck will I do something to help out around here. She bears a burden now and I am the reason. Why should she look at me with anything but hatred?