Tuesday, 24 March 2009

A "cancer free weekend"

So following on from the General Progress update, I'd get it off of my chest the more personal side to this last weekend.

Firstly, I want to make it clear that I am extraordinarily grateful to everyone for their love and support - I do not take it for granted and indeed draw on it as my reserve for when things are low; I just don't want the following to be taken out of context or misconstrued.

With the physical effects of the chemo (nausea, fatigue) came a general depression and a whole feeling of being thoroughly fed up with this whole thing - stuck in the house and mainly the bedroom, not being able to help out, missing the lovely weather & going out as a family, not popping into a cafe or McDonalds for a little treat, even washing the car, DIY or grocery shopping.

Also, for 4 weeks now, so much focus has been on me and people asking how I'm doing it all got too much and it just made me want to scream!

Like I say, I don't want to sound selfish/ungrateful but ordinarily being quite a private person I just felt so overwhelmed and wanted to get away from it all to the point where I just didn't want to talk about it to anyone and tried to deflect questions back to the other person as to how they were doing and what's new in their life.

I wouldn't call it denial of the situation but I think it was just my general coping strategy to try and take more control and be "normal" again.

The other thing I tried to do was set myself some little goals to aim for - as Sunday was Mothering Sunday in the UK, I made an effort to get up early with the boys and bring Sarah breakfast in bed and the cards/presents they had made. It gave me a great deal of satisfaction to do that one small gesture but again helped make things feel normal.

It seemed to work for me as well as talking about how I was feeling to my Dad and to Sarah, the worse part was trying to explain to the boys why I was feeling the way I was but they are resilient and seemed happy to go off and play and be boys that it wasn't so bad (I hope).

Anyways, that's that off of my chest - physically I feel better today, yesterday I learned that what I experienced was to be expected and so feel brighter again.

Bottom line I guess is that we all have a dark moments of doubt, depression, despair - everyone is different but for me figuring a coping strategy as quick as possible, sticking to it and being open & honest with those that you love and trust to share your feelings and concerns seemed to work for me.

Of course, knowing so many people are rooting for you and doing what they can too is always in the back of my mind and helps enormously - thank-you!

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