Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Illness Brings Out the Worst, Doesn't It

Hodgkins is making me a bigger slug than I already was. I have a persistent ache in my arms from chemo and I allow it to keep me from doing things.

If I am still, the ache is less. (If I take ibuprofen or vicodin, it's less, too.) I wake up in the morning with very little ache and go to bed with quite a bit of ache. So I don't do things. I avoid unloading the dishwasher because I have to reach up to put the coffee mugs on the shelf and that might make the ache worse. I don't know that it does. And Bob can tell you I hate to unload the dishwasher anyway, so this is a self-serving avoidance. I don't take out the garbage much anymore because lifting the bag might make me ache worse. I could experiment and see what does and doesn't make me ache, but the downside to that is obvious.

Periodically I decide I am going to be stoic and do the things I normally do, only with naps. I don't announce this because, well, announcing it doesn't seem very stoic, does it, and besides, I haven't admitted to anyone that I'm wimping around. This morning I unloaded the dishwasher and took out the garbage. The problem is, now I want a medal for being stoic. But since I haven't told anyone I'm being stoic, and in fact, haven't even told them that I think I might ache more if I do these things, and since, really, unloading the dishwasher isn't normally a heroic task, chances are Bob will not come home, look at me with admiring eyes and compliment me on my strength of character.

By tonight, I'll have gotten over my stoicism anyway. And I'll be back to quietly avoiding things I think might possibly cause me discomfort in some way.

And since we've gotten eight inches of snow in the last twenty-four hours, that includes almost any task that involves leaving the house. I'm pretty sure cold makes me ache.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maureen, have you read Jane Yolen's Radiation Sonnets?

Your description of your fatigue and listlessness for some reason reminded me of being pregnant. Except, of course, being pregnant usually has this hormone high that goes with it. However, I hope you don't actually think you're supposed to FUNCTION during all this! You're SUPPOSED to rest! Your doctor may not tell you this -- or (s)he may -- but fatigue and pain are nature's way of telling you to stop and let your body work on ejecting bad things and healing good things.

Geoff is still irritatingly cheerful. I think I'm his worry proxy. But that's good: he needs to keep his optimism up, and I can be the hysterical one. We still don't know much yet; my friend in Miami laid out a whole decision tree. Some of the branches were much nicer than others, but he's still going to wind up with a couple of very nasty surgical wounds.

March 03, 2005 5:15 AM  

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