I’m tired. Really, really tired. Today my copies of Midwest Road Trip Adventures arrived and I spent the afternoon into the evening signing and packing up dozens of them. I’m not complaining. As an author, signing books and getting them ready to ship to readers is one of my favorite things to do (after writing, of course). It also kept me distracted from tomorrow.
Tomorrow is my last Adriamycin-Cytoxan treatment. I’ll arrive around 9:30 in the morning and they’ll start by sticking a needle into my port, which provides direct access to my veins. They’ll draw three vials of blood and send them to the lab. If my numbers are within certain parameters, I’ll be cleared for this chemotherapy.
Then, they’ll hook up a series of medicines to my IV. These are antiemetics and steroids, among other drugs, and are the reason side effects are so much less catastrophic than they used to be. I talked to my uncle a few days ago and he thought I’d been vomiting on a regular basis, because that’s what used to happen. In my case, I experience slight nausea and odd food cravings, like cottage cheese. For real? Cottage cheese? Yes, and basically any other dairy product except for kefir. I’ve got CBD and cannabis to help with the nausea and the neuropathy. Both have been life savers. The days I couldn’t walk because the pain in my feet was excruciating were terrifying. One dose of Equilibria Daily Drops and the next morning the pain was gone.
All in all, my experience with the dreaded chemo hasn’t been as debilitating as I’ve heard it could be. I’m more tired than I’ve ever been and the skin on the back of my hands is cracked and discolored in spots. I have no desire to cook, and if you know me, you know that’s like saying I don’t like breathing. At least I still want to write and my brain seems to be functioning. After the first chemo treatment I couldn’t articulate anything I was thinking, but thankfully that seemed to be temporary. Unless, everything I’m writing is coming out like Klingon and you’re all just humoring me.
I know this is stilted. I’m scared about tomorrow. This cumulative B.S. is real, and the last couple of weeks have been difficult. I don’t want to slow down. Right now I have no choice.
Today’s book signing and packing served as a needed distraction. Now that I’m sitting down and thinking about the next week, it’s hard not to feel anxious and afraid. I have too much to do! I am going to finish Living Landmarks of Chicago and get that into readers’ hands by the end of this month, and to do that, I can’t be bedridden the next day as I have been the last three times. I can’t be so tired.
So, I’m giving myself a pep talk. I am going to feel just fine. I’m going to drink water and take my CBD and remind my body that it is strong and powerful. I won’t give into fear. I’ll put on a bright pink dress and a messy short-haired wig and take a cue from Mr. M. C. Dali. Jim’s channeling Escher and Salvador, two artists who altered perception. I’m going to alter my own perception. I’m going to be fine.