Friday, December 18, 2015


I am being taught a lesson in patience. 

I finished the last of my radiation on December 7. They told me it would be two to three weeks before I feel like myself again. It's only been 11 days but I feel so frustrated that I still can't do much, especially at a time of year when so much is happening and there is so much to be done.

I am definitely on the mend and have felt that way for the last few days. It's nice to have a bit of energy but I have learned that it goes suddenly. I can go out to do an errand and before I am done, I can barely make it back to the car. I need to be more patient with myself.

The ear ache and vertigo are not gone. This means nothing. One of the tumours was (note my optimistic use of the word "was") sitting on the nerve for the Inner Auditory Canal. The tumour could be gone and there could still be nerve damage, which is either temporary or permanent. Only time will tell. I need to wait patiently to see if I will ever be symptom-free, or if I just need to figure out how to cope.

I don't see the radiation oncologist until middle of March. I won't learn until then what the status is of my brain and if the treatment worked. Pictures are meaningless, if there is still swelling from the radiation, so I need to be patient about this too.

I had a bunch of other tests before radiation. My bone scan and CT of my chest came back clear (Hooray!) but my abdominal CT showed a very small spot on my liver. It could be scarring (my liver has a lot of scarring from previous tumours) or it could be a new metastasis. The only way to know for sure is to do another CT in a couple of months, to see if anything has changed. I see the medical oncologist again in mid-February and will have done another CT before then. I need to be patient about this too.

I have never been very good at patience. I was the kid who shook the presents under the tree and ripped at the corners. I wanted to know the sex of my kids, as soon as I possibly could (although fate intervened to teach me a lesson). I am the queen of instant gratification.

I'm realizing though that I can't wait until I know more to start doing the things that are good for me. It's time to start taking Vitamin D and eating vegetables again (it really is too damn bad that potato chips are not a vegetable). I also need to cut myself some slack about what I can't do.

And I need to be patient.