I originally published this as a note on Facebook, April 12, 2011. I read it to my parents later that evening. My Dad informed me that I should keep writing these journal pieces and publish them someday. It's a thought; but for now I'm just going to try to share the updates here as well as on Facebook. It might not be crafty, but it will help to keep some of the crafty people I care about in the loop as well.
Evidently, I woke before the roosters today. My head is still trying to sort out yesterday's events. Perrin isn't yet awake and I'm not yet ready to shower. Seems like a good time to sit still and type.
It occurred to me recently that I know of enough people who have fought cancer, ARE fighting cancer, or lost the fight with cancer to dedicate every day of my chemotherapy to one of them. Yowsas on that little detail alone; I'm actually going to try. The very first person I thought to dedicate -- translation: draw strength and inspiration from -- is my cousin Marcus. Marcus was about my age when he fought cancer. Like me, he was hit with cancer in more than one location. I don't doubt that he got kinda pissed about that, but I know from whence he came. I know he was a fighter. I also know that he loved. He's a Dryfuse, so he probably laughed, too. I've told myself that he had more than a few chats with God and whoever else he wanted to talk to. He was family. He was young. It was so fucking unfair. Today, I have to believe that the science has improved in the last ten years so for him, today, I'm going to fight with everything I have.
Speaking of my fight, it might be good to note this now. I'm purposely going into treatment with two toes dipped into De Nile river at all times. The other eight toes are well aware of how serious things are. I'm not a complete fool. I just really need that little bit of denial to house my sense of humor and create a happy place I can visit when things start to feel like too much for me. When I say things like, "Dude! It's just cancer," I'm not trying to live a lie. I'm trying to remember that I can be so much more than these stupid little wonky cells could ever hope for. I have a brain. I have a heart. I've known love, courage, respect and laughter. I've tasted ice cream. I've heard the melody in a child's laughter. I've been surprised by the profound things that children have said. I've known the warmth of the sun and softness of grass under running feet. I've known the goofiness of dogs and freaky ways of cats. I've watched a Jesus lizard run across a hotel pool in Costa Rica. I've felt the magic pulsing in New Orleans. I've felt the teenage angst pains at my dad's jokes. I am human. I am alive. I've lived and plan on doing a whole lot more. These silly little cancer cells. All they've done is multiply and become highly inconvenient. They don't have a brain to plot and plan, they just do. They are not a higher power. They do not have my permission to take my life and today, some of them will begin to die.
I last wrote that I was starting chemo on Monday (yesterday); and that was pretty much true. I learned after writing, that it was my orientation day. It was a good orientation, too. Sally gave me loads of information and started me along on my collection of 64 prescriptions I'd be carrying around and/or collecting for this fight. I'm still a little confused on what does what and/or goes where because the names on the bottles don't perfectly match the names on my paper. I think what I have now are my anti-nausea meds that I can take AFTER each 3-day round of chemo ends. I'll double check when I go back in today. Medicine and confusion are just not a good blend.
Going in today, it will be my official first day of chemotherapy. I'll be there just about all day long. Wednesday, I'll do chemo at home and Thursday I'll go back to the office for the final doses; then off for 11 days. One of those 11 days will be Perrin's birthday. For now, we're going low key with cake and ice cream at our digs -- hence the cleaning crew yesterday -- with the hopes of a bigger party at a later time.
.....Aaannnnd my train of thought derailed. It's time for a shower and a forced breakfast. The next two hours will go pretty crazy fast in my home.