There is a point where no more emotions are available. I have never reached that before but now I think I am there. I don’t think I can cry or freak out any more. Over the past 7-8 months I have been through the following things:
July 1 – find out at my quarterly cancer checkup, that cancer is back and it has moved to new locations. Over the next week I have a painful biopsy, scan and fear running through my head.
About a week later I find out I have Stage IV colon cancer and that the dr only gives me a few months to a few years to live. A week later I get a chemo port installed and the following day start FOLFIRI chemo.
End of July my ex-husband decides he wants to change our custody agreement in massive ways and starts a two-month long fight.
End of August my grandmother, one of my greatest role models dies at 90. I saw her a week before she passed but because she had mersa I couldn’t even hug her to say goodbye. I couldn’t touch her.
Next two months there is chaos in the family trying to figure out what to do with my 92-year-old grandfather and some of his stuff. Just utter chaos.
October I get good news that my masses had shrunk some and their energy uptake was drastically reduced.
December my energy drastically reduces to the point that I can no longer go to see Dill. He is just too far from me. He is my stress relief and now I need to give him up.
End of December I say Good Bye to Dill. The time leading up was dreadful.
January, money gets tight because my job is switching us to a new pay schedule so I have three weeks with no pay. I budgeted well however surprises happen.
January I have a friend who lets me play with her buckskin horse. I have some stress relief back. Happy, Happy me!
January I reduce my chemo drugs because. More happy dances!
January I hit a deer. Nothing too bad but another thing to deal with and a deductible to pay
January I start on new health insurance and have to fight for my first treatment. Ugh… changing insurance stinks!!!!!!
Find out Dill has EPM. It is a mild case but still. Hearing he is sick, I just stare at walls knowing I can’t do anything for him.
Find out my oil tank gauge isn’t as accurate as I hoped. I have to wait until it gets under ¼ tanks to get the minimum delivery from my oil delivery company. Well apparently it jumps from ¼ to empty suddenly as I had been watching it. So I come home to a cold house and have drain my bank account to pay cash for an emergency delivery. And I stare at my walls.
I don’t know how many crazy things I can go through. However, I have been riding a rollercoaster for a while. All the while dealing with having a potentially fatal cancer and all that implies.
The odd thing is I am doing well. I am not freaking out. I am not stressing out. I just shrug and go “okay let’s deal with this now” or “Oh cool, I got a present” (which I still get excited about). I try to swing everything to the good side. I try so hard because I have enough on the bad side.
When talking with Ch the other night, he recommended that I am emotionally drained. That I just can’t process any more on an emotional level. Logically I can, but emotionally I struggle. If it isn’t good, then no emotion surfaces. That bank of emotions is empty. That bank of emotions has nothing left. It has been drained of everything over the last 7 months. But the benefit that the cloud of depression has lifted. And it lifted when I left Dill at the end of December. That cloud doesn’t exist here anymore.
I suspect if I found somewhere safe, in arms that were safe, I would find out the tank isn’t empty. But do I really want to go through that? Do I really want to let it out? I am tired of crying and being stressed. I am tired of the two months of hell that November and December were. I don’t want to go back there. I am enjoying being in a good mood most of the time. But I wonder if that is why I am so painfully exhausted? I had to do everything in my power today to not fall asleep at my desk. I had more coffee than usual. I had more sugar than usual. But still I feel like I am in a zombie state. I just want to go home, take a hot bath, and go to bed. That is all I want to do. That or curl into some safe arms and fall asleep. But that option isn’t available unless you count Digit, my lovely dog. But she isn’t the same.
I really have been through a lot in the last 7 months. I have been through more than my fair share. I am fighting for my life plus dealing with all the other sporadic things that happened above. I think I have experienced enough for now. I would like to get to have an easy pass for a while. A pass where only good happens. And don’t get me wrong. January really has been a good month for blessings from God. I am surprised continually by His foresight and His level of protection. I am surprised by His level of providing. However, this body is tired. This soul is tired. This heart and mind are tired. They need some rest. They need a safe place where bad things don’t bother them.
Today I say good bye to Dill. Today I say good bye to my refuge. I have been quiet on him for the last month because it breaks my heart, but my body doesn’t have the energy for the drive to go and see him. He was my “first” horse. He was the first one that wasn’t just a lesson horse to me. He taught me so much. He has taught me how much work it is to form a bond with a horse. He taught me that I have to fight for the right of him to trust me. I learned how to fight against the fear that going on trails can give. He taught me that falling off a horse hurts. He has taught me how to sit out spooks and has given me a better seat for it. He has taught me that I have some skill with horses. That my demeanor works well with horses. He has taught me that I am stuck with loving and wanting horses for the rest of my life.
I have no disillusionment that he will be just at happy sitting the pasture not having to deal with humans. That is who he is. He doesn’t crave that interaction. He does crave treats though. Oh that is another thing he taught me… limit the treats or a horse can get very pestering for them. And having a 1200 lb animal wanting more treats is not what you want.
I have learned that I love ground work. I love teaching tricks and grazing him. Just sitting there watching him eat the pretty grass that isn’t in the pasture.
I have learned that horses and barns are in my blood. And once it is there, nothing will change that.
I have learned that a barn family is as close as a family. I love and adore my barn family. It breaks my heart as much to leave them. They have been with me through thick and thin. They never laughed at me when I asked for help. They were always encouraging to this green gal. They laughed and enjoyed all the silly tricks I taught Dill. I would sit in the barn for an hour after being done with Dill and him being in the pasture. I would sit there and hang out with my barn family. That was part of the ritual. That was part of what I enjoyed so much.
So now I have to go and say good bye to my beloved horse. And I know there will be another in my future, but he will always hold a special part of my heart. He didn’t make it easy for me. He made me work for everything. And while it frustrated me time to time, I am so glad he did that. I am a better person (not just a horse person) because of him.
So here is to moving forward on the path that God has created. And hoping that the joy on the other will be more than worth it.
After 5 days of feeling like the world is crumbling around me, today I am back into the glory and light. I needed to take a part day for FMLA yesterday to get extra sleep and it was just what my body needed. Because today I am in a world that is bright and sunny verses where I was a few days ago. Even though it is sleeting outside, I am filled with joy and happiness. The yo-yo attacks again, but this time I am glad for the swing.
This morning I decided to listen to a podcast sermon. I do that time to time but I figured what the heck this morning. So I Opened up my list of podcasts I had been ignoring for a while and saw one titled “ Doing the right thing isn’t always easy” by Mark Gungor. So I clicked on it. And it was what my heart needed to hear. He went over how many people in the Bible suffered for doing the right thing, but in the end resulted in something beautiful and good.
While I still don’t know how this will end for me, I am hopeful that God will make some beautiful thing out of this. He will make blessings abound for this. And it was exactly what I needed to hear, that God is going to do something great. There is going to be something beautiful for what I am being asked to endure.
I have decided I need to find a way to make the 5 days of feeling miserable from treatment into something good. I really don’t have any ideas. That is when the darkness consumes me. It is when I feel the most miserable and hopeless. I need to find a way to make those days into a blessing. But how to go about that is puzzling to me. I curl up on the couch and sleep off and on. I don’t do much because I don’t feel like it. Also the pump annoys me so I try to move as little as possible.
Any suggestions anyone can offer would be appreciated. I do need to find something to make joy during the darkness.
God is good. He will do what is best in the most amazing way. I just need to keep walking the path.
I have been grumbling a lot. I have been complaining a lot. I don’t know if that is good or bad. Is it good that I am processing what I am going through? Is it good that I see the reality of what life might hold for me? Or am I focusing on the negative and not the positive? If you focus on the negative, that is all you will see. Have I become that person? I don’t want to be that person.
However I do use this blog to voice my darker thoughts. The ones that people don’t want to hear. The ones where people give some sort of simple answer to get me to move past the grief and dread and fear in my heart.
No one wants to hear that this is tough. No one wants the honesty that planning for retirement seems like a joke now. Or when I hear people say in 5 years they are going to do something, that I think “I hope to live that long and that will be against odds”. When people say “just wait till kiddo is a teenager” and I think “I would be so lucky to see that, but it might not happen”.
When people say “well any day you could be hit by a bus and that would be the end.” And that is the hardest thing because it is belittling what I live with hanging around my neck. Others don’t have to go to chemo every other week. People don’t have their bodies trying to kill them. People don’t have to walk every day with the knowledge that I might not see my kid driving. That I might not see her first boyfriend. Things that all parents take for granted are now wishes and dreams for me.
So maybe I have been grumbling too much but my reality sucks. There is no easy way around it. My reality sucks. And I am trying to make the best of it, but it is hard to do sometimes. It is hard to see the rays of sunlight through the darkness that is my future.
So I am going to try to find some good things and list them here. To hopefully change my point of view.
I am still working full time and am managing to hold my own doing it. Most are amazed that after 6 months of chemo that I can still work and I am. It isn’t as taxing as one would think. I am doing it
I have amazing friends and family who love and support me. They each have their own gifts. They help in their own special ways which I can’t express my appreciation enough. They all offer me love in so many blessed ways! Never have I felt so loved
I have Kiddo. The one biggest blessing in my life. She and I are friends. We work as a team. We have a system that works. I don’t have to yell at her (except when we are trying to leave for school). She and I have a system that is ours and ours alone. She has a will power that I envy. She has an amazing mind. She has a great heart. She is so creative and comes up with so many crazy awesome ideas. My Kiddo is my world. My Kiddo is my heart. I love her so much!
I am about to go off one of my hardest hitting/side-effect drugs with my next treatment. This I such a huge relief. To know next time should be easier. To know that I shouldn’t have as much of a burden for my next treatments is wonderful.
That my CT scan was good. That nothing increase, that there aren’t new cancer spots in my body. I had been having some pains that had me so scared. So very scared that they were going to find cancer in new places. But for now it is staying place and not growing.
That I have a break from chemo pending. I will get a break from having to do this every other week. I don’t know when that will be, but knowing it is pending is good.
God has this. I might be frustrated with Him. I might feel dejected because of Him. But I know He has something wonderful coming out of this. It is hard to think of what the cost to me might be. But I know with complete certainty that when I get to heaven it will be worth it. I might yell at God saying “stop this torture of me”. I might scream at Him that I need something good to come my way. But at the end of the day, I know He has this. And somehow it will be the most amazing and beautiful story.
I am grateful to have the fortitude that I have. I have gained it through lots of trials in my life. But that is what is keeping me going. The me of 4 years ago would be a puddle on the floor. And know what? I am not there. I am still laughing, I am still enjoying life. I am still standing straight and fighting on. I am not giving up.
As much as I hate being a martyr I am grateful to be able to serve His kingdom. This one I go back and forth on, but honestly I know it will be so beautiful when all is said and done.
That I am given a chance to really enjoy kiddo. I don’t know how other parents are, but there were times where I was biding my time till another age. Now I enjoy every moment with her. She gets more hugs and kisses. She gets to hear how precious she is to me. I get to tell her how much I love her. We get to do fun things that otherwise I would put aside for later. For me there might not be a later. Now is the moment to do things, to experience life. And I am so glad that I have been given this chance.
Nothing is taken for granted any more. I know that my lifespan will be impacted by cancer. But I appreciate everything so much more. I appreciate little things and big things. I don’t waste time with uselessness. Instead I enjoy every moment in front of me. And I want to share that with others. I want others to see the joy. I want others to be able to do the same. To enjoy the here and now. It really is so precious.
I can see how precious everything is. Everything is so precious. Every emotion, every second. Every single one is a gift from God. And is something that is to be valued!
I want a present. Not a Christmas present. But I want a present to say “thank you for going through this”. One that makes me feel like all the work is appreciated by God. I want a crown to say “look how awesome I am.” Is that wrong? To want something that I can look at and say confidently that I am fighting the good fight. That I am doing what I should do. Something that I can stare at and know it is all worthwhile. Heck a pat on the head from God would help. Just to know He is proud of me. That He appreciates that I am going through this and still fighting.
I want something tangible. I want a reward for my suffering. Maybe someone to suddenly pay my rent for a year. Or someone to buy me horse and pay for the keep of the horse. Or to suddenly be able to have something amazing. The funny thing is that I don’t know that I would accept such things. But there is a huge part of me that wants something massive as compensation for the suffering I go through.
I want to know that I am doing what I am supposed to do. I want to know it is appreciated and worthwhile. I have lost so much that I love. I fight to keep my head up and moving forward. I fight to keep my job. I fight to do the best I can for kiddo. I fight to stay alive. I get injected with poison every other week and deal with feeling bad for 4 days. And none of this is stuff I have chosen, but it is the truth of what I have to do.
The options of other things to do is just not acceptable. As much as I want to give up fighting, I know I won’t. Kiddo is too important. It just isn’t in me to give up, no matter how much I want to do it.
So instead I keep fighting and trying to keep life as normal as I can manage. But here I sit wanting something. Something I can hold onto during the struggles. Something I can latch onto when I want to give up the most. And I can’t even say what that would be. I need something to hold onto so I can have hope.
The hope has eroded with time. It is so thin and fragile any more. The slightest breeze and I am sure it will break. It likes to hide from me frequently, especially when I am fighting off side effects of chemo like I am right now.
I need something to hold onto so Hope doesn’t need to hide. I had such faith in the beginning. I had such hope in the beginning but time has eroded it to a fragile thing that doesn’t hold up well any more.
God please send me a present. One that can give me something to support my Hope. Something that will booster my faith. Something that will help me remember this is all worth it. That I am fighting for a good and great reason. That I should keep fighting. God it is all you to do this.
I think of ancient Rome. The Christian Martyrs. Those forced to be stoned or go into the coliseum. And now I feel companionship with them. With them I always picture them bravely going to their deaths. I wish I was able to do that.
I feel like a martyr. I keep saying God is having me walk this path for His glory. The thing is that I am paying the price for others to see His glory. I wish I was able to be at peace with that like Stephen was. But I am not. I despise the path I am on. I despise that I am being used in this way. That I need to suffer for others. Is that selfish? Probably but it is the truth.
I am the one that has to look at a shortened life span. Look at the fact that I won’t have a long life with kiddo. Yes, things might change but right now that is the truth by the medical community. There are always exceptions but I can’t really hold onto that any more. It doesn’t hold much hope for me.
I am walking towards the coliseum not knowing if my path will change before I walk out into the slaughtering grounds for the martyrs. I keep having to take steps towards that. Yes, my test results show good things, but I am still looking ahead hoping to just make it to kiddo’s graduation.
I keep praying and asking for God to send an angel to me. An angel that will explain why I need to suffer the way I do. I want an angel to come and give me hope. The good results gave me a little hope but not as much as I was anticipating. I would love to have an angel come to me and stand in my path. And the angel says “have faith, your path will not end in death from this disease. You will be rewarded for what you have been asked to go through.” I want to know that fighting serves a purpose. That it will result in a win for me. Maybe that is selfish but that is what I am hoping and praying for.
A marionette on strings. That is what I am. I do not actively participate in what happens to me, rather I respond to how the strings dance.
I find myself in the most horrible of plays. I find myself in a play where my life is on the line. Those around me are forced to watch with horror. There is not much they can do but observe. With each tweak of a string, I move towards what is God’s goal. I move towards His ultimate plan. However, I do not know what that is. I know it is for His glory but I really want to cut those string and run. I want the scene of the play to change. I want to know that I will not die the horrible death that cancer causes.
I cry out for a change of scene. I cry out for a foretelling like so many plays have. A hint at what will be coming down the path. Maybe someone can come and hint that I will make it through this horror and on the other side will be glory and joy. On the other side I will live in happiness. But so far no foretelling has come. So far my strings are just being pulled to make me take yet another step towards the pending gloom.
I am stuck in this Greek tragedy. I am stuck watching my feet move towards a cliff. I am stuck watching more and more things being removed from my sources of joy. And yet there is nothing I can do. I am attached to these strings. I am not able to remove the strings.