Today’s post will not be sunshine and roses – I wish it were, but I won’t lie to you.
When I woke up yesterday, it felt like that pink cloud I was on last week had been completely replaced by a gloomy thunderstorm. On November 21st, I’ll begin my third round of treatment and I think my body has finally caught up with the reality of what’s going on. It’s very difficult to stay hopeful and positive when you’re feeling so dreadful about what’s happening to you.
Over the past week, I’ve become much more aware of what is going on with me physically. I’ve heard people say that “the treatment for cancer is worse than the actual disease.” I dismissed it a few weeks ago, but I’m starting to see signs that they might not have been too far off. When I step back and think about how crazy it is that chemotherapy drugs can actually kill cancer – one of the deadliest diseases in the world – it’s not that surprising that something that powerful can wreak havoc on your body.
After the first treatment, I was haggard and distressed for about three days before going back to feeling “A-OK.” As soon as I finished my second treatment, I noticed the sickly feeling come on right as soon as the treatment was over. By the time Monday rolled around, the body aches and fatigue I was experiencing were nearly debilitating. Now, with the third treatment just around the corner, I’m mentally preparing to be completely out of commission.
I’ve said from the beginning of this process that staying as active as possible is extremely important to me, but I’ve come to realize that the degree of activity my body will allow for is going to be astronomically lower than I had hoped. I’m thankful for the moments where I’ve felt well enough to knock out a quick workout, but I think those days are coming to an end. My body is telling me it’s just not going to work that way. On top of fighting cancer, now I’m in a mental battle to try to accept my limitations because a “typical workout” seems to be out of the question.
On a semi-positive note, my hair is holding up pretty well so far despite some scalp pain. Over the past two weeks, my scalp has become much more sensitive than it’s ever been. I’ve noticed a little more hair coming out when I brush or wash, but fortunately it’s only been a few strands here and there. Thanks to genetics, I have a ton of hair so it’s not really noticeable!
It’s hard to stay in the light when you can see darkness coming at you from every direction. I’m trying to accept that things are going to get worse before they get better, and that there is nothing I can do about it except to hang in there. My family continues to be my rock through this horrible journey, and I’m so grateful for that. Ice cream helps too.
For more from Maressa, visit livingwellwithmontel.com.