Monday, June 30, 2008

The View From Down Under

Where have I been, you might ask. Well, it's a short story as opposed to a long story. I have been to the hospital and back. And that's it. That's the short story. But where have I been mentally, that's a much longer story.

First, I checked myself into the hospital last week with the help of Dr. Shaum because the pain came back. The phantom pain. I assume it comes from chemo but it got so bad again that I couldn't manage it myself so they checked me in and did some tests and everything seems the way it should seem for someone with cancer so I didn't get any pain answers. While I was there they gave me a lot of pain medication. The kind you can push a button and give yourself throughout the day. I was very aware of this button and tried my hardest NOT to push it because I am not a druggie sort of person which is one of the problems with my pain because I SHOULD be taking pain pills and sort of hate them but they help so I don't do them when I should and then whamo I am in pain. So now I have to write down when to take them and force myself to swallow the suckers on a four hour basis so I'll feel okay. But I felt really badly when I checked into St. Johns so I pushed that button and when I finally got and came back home last Friday I was hooked. Didn't take long. And for the next three days I was crying beyond depressed and I knew somewhere in my being that it was withdrawal from the pain medication but while you're going through it you can't really go there so feeling the way I did I just wanted to take out all the pills I had in my bathroom and swallow all of them at once because I was so sad and all I could think of were sad things and everything that had happened to me in the last three years and it was one hell of a weekend. But the fire broke yesterday and I could see more clearly and you know I wear pain patches on my body and take these other pills daily and the thought of getting off of all this medication one day is a little frightening. How am I going to do it? Should someone lock me in a room and come in and hug me every once in a while? It is tough, man, I am telling you, it is incidious and it is tough. I feel so sorry for junkies and people who are hooked and don't know it. In some teeny tiny way I know how they feel. And that is awful. No reason to go on except to get some more junk to raise those seratonin levels enough to at least feel almost normal. So the pain is gone but I cannot say it was easy getting ride of it.

And while I was in the hospital there was one uneasy moment with a nurse named Reggie. It was the middle of the night and Reggie came in to give me a shot. Usually they give this particular shot very slowly so it won't hurt. Well, Mr. Reggie had too much caffeine or something because he threw that shot into my IV and pushed the syringe as hard as he could and the medicine raced through my body and HURT LIKE HELL. It was shocking. and then I got all paranoid and started thinking that Reggie didn't really work at St. Johns. That he had just come in off the street and was giving shots to middle aged women and old people and I was going to die or something really weird was going to happen to me like I'd swell up and then my ankles DID swell up and I started to freak out and decided that I had to leave the hospital immediately. But it was the middle of the night so I had to wait until morning and I told Dr. Shaum that I was all better and I wanted to go home. I hadn't finished one of the tests but she sent me home anyway and my ankles stayed swollen for a couple of days and I continued to wonder if Reggie was to blame and what was that painful shot anyway.

Here's what I think is happening...I have been doing chemo for a year now. I think the poison is getting to my brain now and if we don't stop soon I will surely lose my mind, if I haven't lost it already. I believe I have four chemos left. I can handle that. I hope. Then we do a scan and then we see what's shakin'. I hope it's not cancer. I hope they tell me that it's over. That I can move on with my life. My life was good, wasn't it? Will you please remind me. Or am I thinking of someone else's life? That was me who used to swim, right? I liked that. That was me who worked with a tutoring program, right? I loved that. I didn't throw up, did I? That was nice. I wore a size six. I had an ass. That was mine, right?

Can it all come back? Including my hair? Is that possible? I think I'm going to pull out my old datebooks and see what I used to do. I hope they're my datebooks. Hmmmm. I wonder whose house I'm living in.................................


nora said...

Oh sweetpea, it will get better- it has to.
"Hang in there" sounds so trite.
Remember the six months from now thing. I hate it that its taking so long.

Roberta J. said...

Your life was great. You laughed a lot and enjoyed it. It will be good again. You have tons of friends, both old and new, who loved you before and love you now. You have a great son. Your ass will return, as will your hair, and you'll be prettier than ever. You'll have a new house and new beginnings. Everything will be great again. You're just on hiatus.

Anonymous said...

Gee, Trish, I thought maybe not hearing anything from you on your blog meant that you were pigging out with Cedric or someone!

I hope you get regulated soon on the meds and start feeling a bit better. As for losing your mind, drugs can do that to ya.

Do you have someone that you talk to (or phone tag) everyday? That's the one thing that keeps me sane and maybe it may help you too.

Always thinking of you, take care,

gary said...


Had I a magic wand, I would be your 'Gary-G-d Father', and wave until my arms fell off, to restore your health, your hair, and THAT ass. What I do have, however, is the trust, no...'the knowing'... that you will be fine and all of your pain and suffering has not be in vain. The best news is that you continue to choose 'life'. That combined with all the love sent to you by all of your friends, you can expect a miracle. To steal a phrase from Richard Lewis, think of this as your 'Magical Misery Tour'...And we'll all live happily ever after.

Please call or email if you need a touchstone or a hug. I'm holding a good thought for you.


JS said...

Constantly thinking of you. Know you can make it through. You're one tough broad-with a wicked sense of humor. Thank you for letting us know what's going on.
Big love to you,