Friday, July 20, 2007

Did she fall or was she pushed?

So, I've been pushed. Given a deadline. The bomb goes off and I'm sent out into the world to fend for myself by December. No more talking. The time for introspection, for figuring out myself is running out.

This is supposed to focus the mind and set a goal to aim for.

So why have I cried hysterically over the last 18 hours? I'm amazed at how I am feeling. Like an abandoned child. Stupid for having forged a relationship that I knew was temporary. People leave - I know this; I'm used to being left behind. So why do it? I hurt now and if I'd kept to myself then I wouldn't. If you don't share yourself, if you don't give people access to your personal world then they can't hurt you.

But I do hurt.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

No air

Sometimes I just feel like I can't breathe. Like there's no room in my lungs to let in air and no strength to even take in that breath.
Every day I sit here in silence surrounded by my equally silent colleagues and want to scream or swear. I don't like to talk to people any more. I won't sit in the staffroom, and if people ask how I am or say hello then I smile and lie and scuttle off as soon as possible. Hibernation-mode. I don't want to share and wouldn't know how to share the way I feel. Mostly I don't want to share. They'd try to be nice. They'd try to understand and they can't understand. I don't want *them* to understand. I want to be left alone. Except I don't. I think. I don't know.
I feel suffocated. And so heavy.

Friday, July 13, 2007


Compression 'garments' really don't go well with hot flushes.
It's currently taking all my self-control - including muttering to myself under my breath - to stop myself from ripping them off before I explode.
Deeply unattractive - just to add to how great I feel about my body, and they itch. Itch, itch, itch.

The following are some things I'm mostly writing down to remind myself. I'm not sure what they are or if they're 'right' - in general, or for me. We'll see.

We are alone in the world
We want meaning, a place, validation
Our identity and reality is defined by our personal beliefs and ideals - we make our own meaning
We cannot depend on others for our validation
We are free to make our own choices
We are personally responsible for the outcomes of those choices - there is no-one else to blame
Choices come with anxiety - fear of failure, fear of death
We are also free to make new and different choices; to reinvent ourselves

We are the architects, builders and planners of our own lives
"we are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams"

In other news - one more Zoladex injection to go!! Then, hopefully within a few months my body will revert to having hormones and stop having endless hot flushes. I could try and calculate how many I've had in the last two years but the numbers might get a bit ridiculous.....
Say, 15 a day for 2 years - how many is that?


That's quite a lot.

Any further questions as to why I am a mixed-up, crazy being??

Monday, July 02, 2007

The hand from hell - or Going to hell in a handbasket

Would you be interested to know what the length of referral time to the Lymphoedema specialist is?
You would?
Take a little guess.....

If you guessed 8 weeks then you win a prize! The prize of knowing you're so clever. Yes, 8 weeks minimum. Sadly I had to tell them that seeing the specialist 3 days before I get on the plane to Peru was *not* going to cut it. They have finagled me in to see the therapist this week, which is the more important bit as far as I can tell. I mean, my oncologist has told me it's lymphoedema; what's this guy going to tell me that I don't already know??

It hasn't been a good introduction (if such a thing exists) because having swollen up and then gone down and then blown up again, next thing is that last Thursday the knuckle on my middle finger did the whole red and hot thing and got an infection!! Yay!! Antibiotics here we come! It's looking much better now but I cannot for the life of me work out where the infection came from because I can't see any damage or cuts or anything on it.......still, I'm known for my track record of un-findable infections. They never definitively pinned down the site of the infection when I went neutropaenic.
So. I'll definitely have to be arm and hand sleeved up at least for flying to Peru and probably whilst there too because of the altitude. Although I'm hearing different things about whether that will be a problem or not. Some medical folk say it is, some say it isn't. Hmmm - who to believe? I'll also be carrying more lovely antibiotics, just in case.

I am just so busy at the moment; it's really quite stressful. I've been going around today in a little state of panic. I can't concentrate properly (hooray for chemo-brain!) and I keep starting things and not finishing them or getting distracted every five minutes. Not helpful for work - I sometimes feel like I just can't think properly anymore. It's like trying to grab something in the mist. You know there's something there and you have a vague notion of its' shape and possibly its' size but you can't see it clearly and can't get a handle on it properly.

I'm thinking that I want to change jobs, but I don't know what to. But, I was looking at a job application form today and realised that now; I have to think about what I'm going to put in the disability declaration fields. I think Lymphoedema can count as it's a long term condition that [can] significantly impair your ability to do ordinary daily tasks. Technically, in the U.K. anyway, I've been covered by the Disability Discrimination Act ever since I got cancer. This law means that my employer can't and couldn't discriminate against me, for example, by sacking me or by not allowing me to alter my working hours in order to be treated/recover. I'm also covered in the future too - an employer cannot decide not to employ me because I had cancer in the past, even if I don't have it at that time. This is an incredibly important law. But to be covered I have to disclose this fact to any future employer. Which means filling in those boxes that say 'I have a disability'. Which is pretty weird. because I don't think of myself as 'disabled' but perhaps, given the number of jar lids and bottle tops that I have to get other people to open for me and the number of shopping bags I have to get other people to carry for me, perhaps I am 'disabled'. And I don't like it. The self-sufficient 'me' can't get on board with that.