The last couple of days, I was reminded how much blogging helped me to get through probably the roughest year of my life. So....here I am again. To test out the theory and write in order to sort out my thoughts. First...a medical rundown. I'm just a few days shy from being 3 months out of chemo. September 21 was my last treatment from the 8 round regimine I was under. Physically? I am getting stronger everyday. Back at work full time. Mommy schedule has been full blown on the go and I've kept up with it! My energy level isn't quite back yet like I'd like it to be and that is frustrating. I could honestly come in after work and take a 2 hour nap everyday if my schedule would allow that. Can't quite figure out if its the chemo aftermath, being a single mom, or just plain getting old.....but I'm really tired at night. Really tired.
I have gained most all of my weight back that I'd lost before my diagnosis. And I'll start a diet, and do good for about a week, and then bam! I'm back into the donuts. Its crazy folks....I actually will hide the evidence. I'll be at a stoplight wolfing down one (or 2) in the 3.2 seconds it takes me to get from Shipley's to my office.....all the while hiding it from other cars! Its bad enough I don't like to eat in front of my co-workers.....but to hide me taking a bite from total strangers in the car next to me? I'm weird! I worked so hard to get the weight off before. This has me down. Really down. I don't feel like exercising. And I like to eat. So there you have it......I'm fat. For a while, I was hoping it was due to the extensive amount of steriods I was taking.....but now I don't know. :(
My body aches most daily. I still have the port and its pretty uncomfortable. My hands hurt, which is a bit of a struggle. I STILL haven't been able to get all thank you notes written and mailed. Christmas cards are just not going to happen! :) And yes, "Chemo brain" is a real thing. I'm usually a perfectionist at work. And I've made errors that were so silly. I have learned to write EVERYTHING down. I simply can't remember! Frustrating. I've been told that gets better. I hope so. Its driving me crazy!
I'm sleeping very little. Which in turn makes me grumpy. Since chemo, my body has been forced into full blown menopause. And because of the cancer, I'm not allowed to be prescribed any kind of hormone therapy. Ever. So its effects....the weight gain, the hot flashes.....OH the hot flashes.....are miserable.
My hair is growing back. Mostly blonde....ok....I cannot tell a lie.....gray.....hehehe. But I joked with the kiddos a few days ago...that I acutally had "bed head" a little one morning! :) Won't be long until I can get rid of the hats......as SOON as its long enough to get to a colorist. :) I also have started to be able to wear a little "mascary" (as Syd used to say) .....so maybe soon I won't be so "scary".....ha! :) I've never been a really vain person.....but I really feel like like look horrible....and that in itself is discouraging. Every woman wants to feel pretty. This really took alot from me....from my appearance.....from my womanhood.
My kids don't quite understand. To them? The cancer's gone, the chemo is over, mom's back, so let's get over it. I get that. I really do. I'm not sick anymore so I should be back to my old self. I fake it most of the time. And the guilt consumes me when I dread ballgame nights or having to run them here and there.....because I'd rather just go home. And rest. Those who know me....know that disappointing my children is right up there as bad as having cancer for me.
The depression has set in. There's even a name for it...."rebound depression." While its in the back of my mind.....that the cancer may/is likely to come back at some point in my life....I don't sit and worry about it. I just feel so alone sometimes. Even in a crowded room. I feel robbed of my spirit. I held it together pretty good while going through it all.....ironic how NOW I fall apart.....mainly on the inside. And of course to David. Thank God for David.
I try to hide it from most. Fake it most days. I decked out the house for Christmas. Hosted Thanksgiving at my house.....2 seperate gatherings, in fact. My friends are sheilded from what's going on inside of me. I just want to hide under the covers. I look like a mess. I cry at the drop of a hat. I feel like a failure as a mom. Christmas is usually my favorite time of the year.....But with bills piling up....trying to recover from being out of work so long.......I feel like I will NEVER get back on my feet. My house payment is late, my bank account overdrawn, every OTHER bill is due and my children are excited about Christmas. I'm so angry with myself that I didn't have an appropriate emergency fund to prepare for all that this took from us. I am just a complete mess. While the worry simply overwhelms me.....I still try with all that I am to focus on how completely blessed I am. Without the generosity from SO many.....Our situation would be completely tragic.
If it weren't for my closest and best friends. My David. My kiddos.....and most importantly my God, I don't know where I'd be, or what I'd do. Thanks to Deb, Dione, and so many others last week, they met a need. I was able to do a little shopping for the kiddos. Others have met simple needs in other ways......So I know in my head and in my heart that even though I "feel" alone. I am not.
As I think of the Sandy Hook tragedy....I realize that once again, my priorities needed an "adjustment". This Christmas could have taken a very different path for my kiddos, without the prayers and treatment I received this year. I can wrap them up and hold them tight. I can share so many memories and much more with them that other parents can not. In a few years, they won't remember how much or how little is under the tree. But they will remember building gingerbread houses together......watching Christmas movies.......worshipping together and praising our God for what Christmas is REALLY about. They will remember our laughs and silliness that without a doubt fill each and every day. For we really received the best gift of all many years ago......our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
In a world of so much evil.....We can only turn to God. Its sad that we have to lock our doors, pray for safety in our schools, look around us at all times as we walk into Wal-mart, are forced to hide simple things like medications in our own home, have to shield our children from the news, yet are forced to share much of it with them for their own protection and safety. Our world is so dark. I have shared this on facebook.....but my sweet friend, Billie, who also leads my SS class, shared this on Sunday.....written by Max Lucado, its worth praying daily through this season.....
It’s a good thing you were born at night. This world sure seems dark. I have a good eye for silver linings. But they seem dimmer lately.
These killings, Lord. These children, Lord. Innocence violated. Raw evil demonstrated.
The whole world seems on edge. Trigger-happy. Ticked off. We hear threats of chemical weapons and nuclear bombs. Are we one button-push away from annihilation?
Your world seems a bit darker this Christmas. But you were born in the dark, right? You came at night. The shepherds were nightshift workers. The Wise Men followed a star. Your first cries were heard in the shadows. To see your face, Mary and Joseph needed a candle flame. It was dark. Dark with Herod’s jealousy. Dark with Roman oppression. Dark with poverty. Dark with violence.
Herod went on a rampage, killing babies. Joseph took you and your mom into Egypt. You were an immigrant before you were a Nazarene.
Oh, Lord Jesus, you entered the dark world of your day. Won’t you enter ours? We are weary of bloodshed. We, like the wise men, are looking for a star. We, like the shepherds, are kneeling at a manger.
This Christmas, we ask you, heal us, help us, be born anew in us.
If I have any readers left out there....please pray for me. Pray that I can continue to keep our home a "happy place" for my children. That I can make good financial decisions and be a leader of my home. That I can be a great friend. As good a friend to others as they have been to me. Please pray that I can walk away from some that I care about.....but just aren't good for me. Pray for THEM, and that they get the help they really need. That I can continue to forgive others.....as forgiveness has been shown to me throughout my life. Pray for my children.....that they continue to be my rocks while I'm trying to get back to "business as usual." Pray that I can receive forgiveness from them at some point for the struggle we are under. Pray for David. That he knows how much I appreciate his patience and understanding throughout this year. I know some may made a run for it. He may wish he had! ha Pray for my Sam -- as he is driving now.....(might throw one up there for those in his path! ha) Pray for my Sydney. Just because. I love them so much. Pray for some dear friends of mine who are struggling as well....for God knows their needs. Pray that my cancer is really GONE.....and that my scans in January agree with that. Pray for those still fighting the hard fight......and their families. Pray that the Sandy Hook victims can find some light and peace during this Christmas.
Ya know....I think I DO feel a little better. :) I may keep on bloggin a while. While my prayer list is as long as my grocery list......I know He listens! :) Im still working on my "guest writer" entry that I will most like post here when its finished. I also have been approached some time ago about sharing an entry from a man whose wife fought my battle, and he would like to share HIS thoughts. I will be doing that very soon.
I know how very blessed I am. I know that I have SOOOO much to be incredibly thankful. Trust me, I am. I've not understood these feelings of anxiety and depression I have been having. Stresses of the holidays, coupled with rebounding back into my life. Its tough, guys. Glad I've got my "village." We serve a mighty God!
Until next time.....I hope everyone around me is blessed with an absolutely PERFECT Christmas!