no news is good news

I have felt good for the last week and have been often pretending the world of the sick has nothing to do with me. Except for some web research in an attempt to figure out how better to manage the queasiness next round. I haven’t been thinking much about the larger issues of getting rid of breast cancer, so I haven’t had much to add here.

Oh, but we did go to the initial genetic-testing appointment. More on that later. It was more of a dis-appointment.

I notice my life is beginning to be keyed to the chemo cycle rather than the months of the year or the phases of the moon or any other repeating pattern. My personal cycle has three weeks: the chemo week, which starts with chemotherapy on a Tuesday, and when (at least the first time) I felt pretty yucky; the middle week, when (at least the first time) I got to feeling better and regained a lot of energy; and the dread week, ending the day before chemo. We are in the dread week now. It is physically easy but mentally harder than the middle week. Whenever someone asks, “When is your next chemotherapy?” or worse, thinks it is this week, I feel grumbly in a sort of “DON’T remind me!” way.

I am dividing my time between living my regular non-cancer-patient life and reminding myself to do things now that might improve the experience next time around. Even though that means slipping into the world of the sick again. Like calling the oncologist to discuss anti-emetics and other phophylactic treatments…haven’t done that yet. Calling the TCM doctor to ask about scheduling more acupuncture for next time, even though I am not at all sure it helps (did that–thanks, Lisa!). Researching how other chemo victims have handled nausea (did that) and following up on their ideas (vitamin B6…on the grocery list). Picking up the rest of my Marinol prescription at the grocery store! Did that. (had to put an easy one on the list) Marinol, the medicine derived from marijuana, says in the side effects list: “excessive feelings of well-being.” I wish.

I have been teaching childbirth classes and going to meet with a new doula client, all the time waiting for a friend of ours to have her baby Any Minute Now. I am attending this birth with my 18-year-old niece Natalie as the other doula, which makes me quite happy. I have one more class to teach for a couple due in a few weeks, another meeting with my latest client, and some classes to plan out as well (I might be teaching at our nearby hospital in a few months, if they like what I put together). I also got notification today that I am all set to take the Lamaze Childbirth Educator certification exam one month from today…they accepted my application as an “experienced educator” and to be certified by Lamaze all I have to do is pass the exam! Correction: all I have to do is not feel too sick to take the exam, on day 4 after chemo 3, and then pass. (Or I can defer until April.) So things are happening on the birth front, which feeds my spirit.