Monday, October 30, 2006

where am I

The flood of relief that washed over me on Friday was nice, but not as liberating as I had hoped it would be.

I'm still teetering on some emotional brink somewhere. I think it takes a little while to recover from the stress of something like a breast biopsy, but I was hoping that the good news would flick the switch firmly back to the up position.

At home, things are going swimmingly, in this calm before the storm. Tomorrow is Halloween; Thursday my in-laws arrive. Friday is DD's sleepover birthday party, and Saturday is her Club Libby Lu party. My in-laws leave on Monday, and I suppose after that I'll be able to relax for a few weeks until Thanksgiving arrives -- but I really won't, because I've already started getting ready for Christmas. (Lots of people and presents to think about, and baking, and stuff like that.)

In the extended family, there are various situations of varying stress-levels that are affecting me, too. I hate being so far away. I hate not being able to help. I hate being out of the loop only to be brought back into it to find that some things have gone from bad to worse -- on the other hand, though, some things turned out to be nothing, not a problem at all.

But the good news never seems to cancel out the bad news. How can it? I can't not worry, or not be sad, about someone I love in difficulty just because I got some good medical news for a change. It's not possible to just switch that off, and even if it were, I wouldn't.

Compounding these melancholia are the stupid physical trials I'm still enduring. The splint, which I wear religiously every night, is by far the worst. Yes, it's helping my TMD, but at this point I'd rather have back the small but very, very important slice of my life that it has robbed: pillow talk. Honestly, wearing it is depressing me, but I will keep wearing it until my next visit with the doctor (just a couple of weeks) to ask him about alternatives. I'm bracing myself to be mocked about this, but I don't care. I'm fast approaching the point where I'd rather have jaw joint pain than wear the splint.

And besides the splint I'm dealing with the breast healing, which is fine except for when I forget that I have an incision there and do something stupid and then it's not fine; currently the breast is half yellow and half purple in that weird way that bruises tend to develop. At least it's not bikini weather, I say to myself by way of encouragement.

Off Aleve now for a week or so, and my weight has crept downwards a bit, whew! I'd still like to take off a few more pounds, but I don't care about the weight so much as I care about fitting into my clothes. Since I'm working out every day, I'm actually developing some muscle. If turning flab into muscle means my weight stays the same that's OK with me. My jeans fit comfortably now, which was my essential goal: avoid shopping! The physical therapy exercises are helping tremendously; I only get deathly headaches once a week now, as opposed to every day. And most days, my hip and tailbone are much better, but not today, for some reason! Ah, well. I'll keep it up anyway, because it helps.

A new problem has surfaced over the past week or so off NSAIDS: I'm having a lot of trouble swallowing, and my throat feels horrid. At least two or three times a day I have trouble swallowing my pills, and for a few nights in a row now, something will go down the wrong way at dinner and then I get (very painful) hiccups. So I'm back to wondering whether it's scar tissue or cancer recurrence, or maybe it's just delayed nerve damage. Whatever it is, it's annoying.

I literally have the feeling of just hanging on, and I don't know where I'm finding the discipline to work out and do housework and everything else. Everything's an effort but I can still see that these efforts are worth it, and so whatever it is, I get it done. I don't like this weird state but I don't know how to get out of it. I'm going to give it a little more time to resolve... I don't think this is something that medication could help. But if it goes on too long, that's an option I'll consider.

3 comments:

Papercollector said...

regardless of the sun out there, it is still fall, by far the way of less sunshine, and more stress --never mind medical stuff. one day at a time Bit by Bit, Bits You have so much to look forward to --- I long for the trials of the younger days... however I will persevere as I must, and you my dear sister will too. Dont forget to smile!!! and Sing! A little music can chase away those blues I hope ...
and believe here Dickerson is right ---

I dwell in Possibility--
A fairer House than Prose--
More numerous of Windows--
Superior--for Doors--

Of Chambers as the Cedars--
Impregnable of Eye--
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky--

Of Visitors--the fairest--
For Occupation--This--
The spreading wide my narrow Hands
To gather Paradise--

Tracey said...

If you'll remember, I had a difficult time letting go of the feelings I had pre-MRI. It took me nearly a week and a half to get back into my life emotionally after months and months of worry. AND, I didn't have all the other physical challenges you continue to have. Our minds take a while to shift gears. It's perfectly normal and natural. Also, just because you get good news in one area doesn't mean you have to enjoy or not be bothered by other situations that are either still up in the area or have their own negative import. I'm sorry thing are still difficult.

Anonymous said...

Joan,
I haven't read here in a while - life and all, you know - and had no idea so much was going on now.... You're in my thoughts. You've helped me so much, whether you knew it or not, through my thyca experience.

I understand the emotional brink - I'm teetering there myself, and it seems like things happen constantly with no end. This is so much harder than anyone on the outside can possibly imagine.