Surprisingly I don’t think that often about the high chance that I’m going to probably die pretty soon from this cancer. I try to think about it, but it’s really hard to conceive of, even when given a life expectancy that is measured in months. How to believe in that? Why believe in that? I don’t really know how it will go and it is hard to believe, I guess, even for me. But then I step back a little bit and catch myself stumping around the kitchen, say, after breakfast—trying to do my part to clear the table—and I walk like a penguin and I almost fall down and I am breathing hard don’t have any energy. This is not a healthy person.
So I walk to the fridge and put something away, walk back to the table, and walk back to the fridge and I’m panting. I don’t have any energy and have to rest, but then I don’t always rest because I’m stubborn so I end up wearing myself out like this many times a day. This morning after breakfast I decided to come up to bed again and sit and read so I had to get all the things I needed to do that and then come upstairs, which is hard these days. Then I remembered I would want the phone if it rang, and then I needed water, and then I needed to take a morphine, and once I did all that I was just staggering around like a drunken penguin because I just had no energy and could barely get myself to move around. So then I plopped into bed and waited a little bit before I could swing my legs in because I was so tired.
So I keep wearing myself out and I don’t notice all the time how far I am from being a healthy person. Then some kind of reality check sinks in, like being offered a cut in the bathroom line at the movie because I have a stick to help me balance and I am obviously not healthy. Oh. This is me they’re offering special treatment to?
On paper right now things look okay. The chemo we started in December and early February are both working, it seems like from the CAT scans and MRIs, and so on paper my cancer is ‘responding to second-line therapy” blah blah blah but then in my real life right now it seems really hard. Maybe more for emotional and psychological reasons than physical, but the physical – particularly fatigue and trouble walking – is pretty tough right now.