Chemotherapy targets cells that grow and divide quickly, as cancer cells do. Chemotherapy does not know the difference between the cancerous cells and the normal cells. The normal cells will grow back and be healthy but in the meantime, side effects occur. And do they ever!
Day 3 and the joint and bone pain is excruciating and makes sleeping difficult. It is hard to know what is normal levels of pain and what isn’t. It is like a circulating pain. It’s like some one has a voodoo doll of your body and is poking you every 30 seconds in different spots. Twinge in your back, then knee, hip….gut and is extremely annoying. The pain will wake you from a dead sleep and you will have no choice but to get up otherwise you will spin the sheets til you are trapped and immobile. So, my new normal is getting up and perusing TV in the wee hours before the sun gets up regularly. There is definitely a TV prime time opportunity for insomniacs… They should have some meditation shows on at this time!
Plus speaking of side effects, it is so important to stay hydrated during chemo to flush toxic waste from the drugs from your kidneys. I may have to up my intake because in the morning my urine has a nice orange hue. I find this odd because I have been consciously drinking way more than I usually do. May have to up my game!
Recuperation is rest and recovery and I need to ease up and accept this is going to be slow. I am starting to think I better buckle up because this isn’t going to be as easy as I thought. It basically sucks! I am just keeping it real! Sure I am remaining positive but I am here to tell you this isn’t a walk in the park. More like a climb up a cliff so it’s a bit of a body workout! Basically, it is hard to explain and likely difficult for you to comprehend unless you are battling cancer or some other critical illness.
- Tylenol or Advil -Okay had to mention these are required so they are not real distractions but more like temporary relief.
- Write a blog like this one
- Meditation and Muscle Relaxation–Ohmmmmm!
- Tylenol or Advil–Did I say this already?
- Imagery: visual, sound or other pictures and thoughts that provide a pleasant and relaxing experience. I love tropical islands so been watching a show where people are looking for their dream vacation properties. Oceans, waves, the sunlight..fabulous!
- Comic Relief-Watch a comedy show
Well, the good news is I convinced and illustrated to the nurse at Community Care Access Centre that I can inject myself saving me from the effort to get over to the clinic daily. She even commented that I was like a professional. Yup, I missed my calling. Actually the side effects for these injections cause the bone and joint pain I have been experiencing.
On to visualization! Find a quiet peaceful place alone for about 15 minutes or so. They say natural settings like a beach, forest path, park bench work. I am making do with a couch in front of my TV.
- First thing to do is relax. Deep breathing may help.
- Flush all the chatter of multiple thoughts, issues or concerns. I had to yell at mine to shut the hell up.
- Now picture the goal or result. I am picturing a warm tropical island, sunshine, tall drink with an umbrella, my pool boy Sfwen and absolutely no pain. More detail the better.
- Keep monitoring your thoughts.. Flush the bad ones out.
- Focus on the end goal
Ok, this takes time, it won’t always work but it can distract you for awhile.
Strangely I feel a bit better, at least, til my next injection.