Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Life, Interrupted: Another Medical Curveball Teeters Me Over the Batshit Crazy Cliff

Last I posted my phone was ringing with my doctor on the other end presumably waiting to tell me that my cancer had returned followed by how long I may have to live because she knows that I made the decision some time ago that another round of chemotherapy was not an option with which I was willing to live.

Much to my surprise, those were not the words she delivered to me, and today's post, which I had promised to post a week ago, was going to focus on the short-lived excitement and relief I experienced followed by dismay, confusion and near depression I found myself immersed in after her phone call. But once again, nothing in my life can go as planned these days as one crisis merely wraps up just in time for the next one to reveal itself.

Briefly, here is the good news my doctor delivered that oddly enough left me feeling lost and nearly depressed about my future. I have explained previously that my doctors and myself had feared the worst: that my cancer had returned.
To the thrill of my doctors and myself, the round of tests they subjected me to revealed the opposite was true. My doctor, the radiologist and my oncologist after reviewing my test results were unable to find any sign of cancer in my entire abdomen. Miraculously, the chemotherapy had done its job and, for now, I was awarded my temporary cancer free card. I would not be eligible for a permanent cancer free card until several years of clear scans could be accumulated.  But what about the return of my symptoms you are probably wondering? That is going to have to wait for another trip to the gastroenterologist and a different round of tests to determine the cause of the "extreme swelling of the colon, unrelated to cancer" as mentioned in my CT Scan synopsis.

This is exciting as hell, no? You bet your ass it was. I was thrilled and excited, not to mention surprised, beyond belief until I wasn't. You see I had only really planned my life up until that day, June 13th, that I was to receive my test results. My Google calendar from June 14th forward was a blank slate; a barren vast expanse of nothingness. Never before had my future been so empty. My calendar was typically full of upcoming events, celebrations, commitments and obligations, but I had purposefully made no entry beyond June 13th because I didn't think that I needed to litter my calendar with tasks associated with end of life planning. That's when my excitement turned to what was anticipated to be the title of this post, "WTF? What Do I Do Now?"

I had halfway analyzed and halfway processed the feelings associated with that spiralling down into the unknown and was prepared to write about it, but I am going to have to return to that analysis and that halfway written post because just when I should be accustomed to this onslaught of curveballs that are my life recently, I have been thrown a slider that I never saw coming.

Tonight, I'm laying in bed with a pick line in my arm that's attached to a portable pump supported by a lovely 1980s style fanny pack that every four hours delivers me an intravenous dose of antivirals to combat my latest interruption. That interruption being that I have shingles.

Note those corduroy OP Shorts. They're coming back!

Yes, God, Mother Nature or Satan, depending on when you ask me has decided that I am strong enough to overcome at least one more medical hurdle before I just say fuck it and go batshit crazy in some sort of scorched earth scenario. Please, please join me in hoping I that am indeed strong enough to overcome this latest obstacle because I have gone batshit crazy a few times in my life and none of us want to witness that hot mess again if it can be avoided.

You would think that this latest downtime would afford me plenty of opportunities to solve the problem of my barren Google calendar, but instead the pain and burning of these shingles has me considering ordering a BB gun from Amazon Prime so the next time I hear children laughing and playing outside my bedroom window I can pick them off one by one with BBs as we did those little ducklings moving from left to right across a fake river in the carnival games of our youth.  Oops, pull the brakes, Robert. See what I mean? I am teetering right on the brink of batshit crazy. Had I felt like this in the late 80s I could have easily been the one framing my husband for murder by killing myself in the trunk of his car instead of that batshit crazy Jill, ("Oh, poor Jill" as Valene would say) from that delicious television show Knots Landing. Her husband, Gary, drove a Jaguar nonetheless. How delicious (and batshit crazy) is that? Seriously, catch the episode if you can from Knots Landing Season 10, Episode 16 titled "Poor Jill", of course.

This is probably the point where I should take a break in order to try yet another worthless pain relieving gel, but one more of those might just push me over that batshit crazy cliff that all of us are hoping I can avoid. So, instead, I am going to pop three 600mg Ibuprofen, a 10MG Ambien and an anti-depressant, call it a night and check back in with you tomorrow.

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