Monday, April 27, 2015

Getting through

Some days are harder than others.  For those going through cancer treatment, putting on a brave face for others is second nature.  We know that it is in the quiet moments when we can let that shield down and free ourselves of the emotions we keep behind the mask.  It's not easy.  We do it, because we have family that need us to be strong.  There are others we tell that we are doing fine, because we really don't want to lose it. We are told we look beautiful or wonderful, but truthfully, we see the changes in our bodies.  Cancer ages you physically, and it changes you emotionally.  Nothing will ever be the same.  Some days it isn't about being brave, it is just about breathing and getting through. As I get closer to the end of my chemotherapy, I have more days of just getting through.  I ask for a lot of strength from the angels to get me though another day.  I have more days of being afraid than I did in the beginning.  The first four rounds of A/C were extremely difficult, but I was stronger when I began chemo, so in many ways, I feel I handled it better.  Now that I am in the midst of Taxotere treatment, I find my body is not as resilient as it once was. There is little recovery time between cycles and I'm paying for it physically.  My skin and nails are taking the brunt of the burden this time around.  At 45, I'm developing deep set wrinkles and the skin on my hands burns with intensity.  I am drying up like a leaf, and no amount of moisture seems to aid me. Because of intense pain in my fingers and nails, I've had to adjust how I create art.  I cannot create fine detail or hold a brush for a long period of time. Add fatigue, muscle pain, mood swings and constant tearing and you've got a wonderful cocktail.  I won't get into some of the other things.  Some things are between me and the bathroom.  But this is not my bitch fest.  I'm actually grateful in many ways.  The pain lets me know I'm still here.  I also know that there are so many more going through exactly what I am going through.  Some have had to endure it longer and some have had it far worse. God bless them.  I pray every day that one day we will find a cure.  I've said from the beginning that everything happens for a reason.  I don't believe this is some karmic payback.  This is just part of my journey. I am meant to grow, learn, change and perhaps help others from this experience.  So, while some days are harder than others, every day that I am here is a blessing.