At least sandal season has passed…

Last time I took care of my toe nails, it was for a pedicure a few days before my surgery in early August. Since then, I’ve done nothing to them but enjoy them. Now, it’s nearly October so you can imagine that they’ve grown out quite a bit in that time. Today, came to find in my shoe at work that the big toe nail on one side had ripped off on its own and was floating around inside my shoe.  Seems the chemo did impact those nails as well – which was to be expected. With me letting my nails get so long, they now needed trimming and – long story short, most of them needed a huge trim to remove the dead, cancer-ridden ickiness from them. Unfortunately I couldn’t get rid of all of it (still some to grow out on most toes) but at least the ickiness is moving on – however slowly. Least sandal season has passed. Missing both big toe nails is nothing to share with the world!

I have 2 hairstyles!

As of about last Friday, I now have 2 hair styles to choose from!! I can either push all of my hair forward toward my nose or push it to the side. Not enough hair to spike it yet but I’m working on it.  Also – can still see my scalp through my hair but it IS getting longer – as noted by my ability to actually be able to noticeably push it in one direction or the other. Baby steps as it grows in……bit of a joke but also a bit of fun. When I push it to the side it looks like I might have actually cut my hair this short on purpose…..


Well it took long enough! The last few days I’ve been taking medication in the morning  then feeling fine the rest of the day and barely needing any. Yesterday it was 1 percoset at 7 am – then 1 at 5:30 pm. This morning it was 2 Tylenol at 6:15 am then none all day. I was so thrilled that the hurt finally, FINALLY died down and went away – that I celebrated with 2 small glasses of a nice white table wine! Oh – such an easy small buzz never felt so good.

I started driving right before I went back to work – wasn’t so great first time out to the library. I parked in a parking garage – mistake!  So much turning irritated everything a bit. But after a few days – all was well.

I’m at 5 and a half weeks today. Something magical about 6 weeks. Next Monday I’m going to the gym! Will only be stretching and maybe running or light erg (turning the tension down as low as it will go) – to see how things go. My calf muscles are so tight it’s ridiculous! Everything is. Will spend week #1 just stretching – lots of mobility!

Sleeping really well these days. Found a great sleep/hypno app – Deep Sleep with Andrew Johnson. If I’m tired -puts me right out. I’ve gotten used to his thick accent and now quite enjoy it. Lulls me to sleep.

Also – was SUPER DUPER excited that I went camping (in a tent!) with my family this past weekend. So nice to be OUT of the house and feel normal again!! Oh how I had missed it. I slept on a brand new cot (thank you amazing husband!) and all bundled up. Was perfect weather for camping and relaxing. Got my heart rate up a bit on a small hike – even trying to take it easy there was a bit I had to go to get back up from where I’d gone down to! All in all it was great. Also was the first time today that I walked up all 3 flights of stairs at work – only once. Trying to wait the full 6 weeks to take it easy. If I blow it now it would be bad…… patience is key!

Insert Expletive Here

It was bound to happen I guess, though I hoped it wouldn’t. I over did it after the surgery. Just woke up in pain from the surgery. Usually when I’d wake up if I wasn’t moving I wouldn’t hurt – and I’d realize I was 2-3 hrs out from when the pain pill (percoset) wore off and it would begin to hurt as I got up to get to the pain pills. Tonight I woke up 2 hrs afterwards but this time in pain. Fuck me! It hurt. I also have some kink on my left side that sometimes I annoy. I swear – when you talk to people they mention that “everybody’s different” as far as their pain after the surgery. Everyone before surgery said 3 weeks off. I took of 3.5 weeks before going back. I’ve been taking it easy – still no high heart rate (I don’t even walk up the stairs at work, only down them), no heavy things picked up – my computer has been staying at work so I don’t have to carry it back and forth and I don’t take it to any meetings, my arms haven’t gone straight up over my head since before the surgery.  If it was still going to hurt this much from after the surgery then I’m still healing in HUGE ways and they should have told me to stay the FUCK home!  They give me 40 percoset at a time and I look at it as a 10 day supply which doesn’t seem like much these days. Today was actually the first day I was trying to just use the percoset at night. So – it was 2 Tylenol as of this morning, then 2 Tylenol at lunch (6 hrs later) – then 1 percoset 6 hrs later around dinner and then I woke up NEEDING the percoset – fuck.

I’m just so, SO tired of the pain and soreness. The inability to do what I want to do with my arms and chest. Actually -it’s not so much the inability to do anything – because in all honesty when I WAS putting away laundry and doing dishes last night it didn’t hurt much more than it normally does – so I did have the movement I thought I could have but evidently I was wrong – dead wrong. Fucking doctors. I swear, they should have said I had to stay home 5 weeks without movement so I’d heal faster and NOT overdue it. Since I went back at about 4 weeks figured it’d be a little sore but ok. The discomfort that has continued is NOT what I had imagined. Seriously?! I feel like if I had stayed quieter, not gone back to work that maybe it wouldn’t still fucking hurt!!!

My husband says it’s one step forward, two back. I say no – I hadn’t gone back like this before – this is NOT acceptable to me. This is NOT acceptable!!!  Considering  popping a second percoset is not acceptable. I know I’m upset and angry and want to lash out at everyone from my husband to my doctors to the cancer to EVERYTHING right now. I’m just SICK of it all. The pain. The healing. The looking for the silver fucking lining in everything.

Just this morning I was telling myself that if my body’s monthly cycling is over it seems to be great for my complexion! I’ve been prone to breakouts and blemishes nearly all of my life excluding the time I was on birth control pills or actually pregnant. It’s cleared up -yeah (how sarcastic can I be when I say that….).

I’m also having trouble at work. When my health went to hell my priorities were finally fixed, reset to where they always should have been – health/me first with family and friends followed by work. Not only did my work drop down a few notches (I’m fairly certain it was #1 in my mind, all the time through graduate school, post doc and then until my daughter was born – when it finally went to #2 behind family)….but now I’ve completely lost any passion I had for my career. It’s now a fucking job. Go in, do what you need to and get home. I work to LIVE not live to work. I’m NOT my father who works all the time to this day with no hobbies.  Problem is that when I lost my passion and I am still on pain medication that I need to take every 6 hrs so I don’t hurt physically, I also have had a ton of trouble engaging at work. Kind of like Maverick in Top Gun when he’s holding Goose’s dog tags in his hands and he won’t engage the enemy in battle and the catapult is stuck on the aircraft carrier and they cannot get anyone else up into the air. He just stairs into nothingness asking Goose to talk to him and tell him what to do. I have a whole lot of OMG right now as the seconds and minutes tick by until a huge presentation I need to prepare and give to help drive a half day long strategy/state of the market discussion at work. I’m petrified! I can’t get traction. I can’t get going. I become the deer in the headlights saying FUCK FUCK FUCK to myself over and over – FOCUS! START! and then I get overwhelmed again and find myself going back to the smaller, simpler work instead of digging into the obviously HUGE FUCKING presentation that I need all of this time to put together.

I’m depressed about this. Docs said it might be the Tamoxifen which I started a week or so ago – I’m not sure. I think it’s just another excuse to not be in a better mood. Saw something on Facebook that said you have to CHOOSE to be happy each morning. Pretty sure I’ve been waking up thinking I’m still fucked and waiting for the cloud to go away.  The 2nd cup of mocha coffee (a HUGE no no for me) did bring a smile to my face at work – that and the chocolate I was sharing with a coworker. I feel like I needed the extra stimulants (cocoa and caffeine) just to get through. I usually never go for a second cup (granted it was a weak coffee both times) but it was the only thing that really perked me up yesterday.  How awful right? Not so bad but still, I don’t know – just wish this good mood thing wasn’t such an uphill battle all of the time…and in all honesty in this blog when there are huge lags in any posts, that means life has been good. I usually write only to share the issues that make me sad or anger me or that I find too silly/stupid and unexpected not to share. So all in all the posts have slowed a lot lately which really is a good thing…..  it’s just that although the cancer is now out of my body the fun on the roller coaster still continues. Just when I thought I knew how this ride went and that it wasn’t so scary anymore it scared me again and made me cry. Fuck cancer for making me feel this way. I want to say that I’m stronger than this – better than this but all I can say is what Brene Brown has taught me to say – I am worthy. I am enough. I’ll repeat that since it’s damned important – I AM WORTHY. I AM ENOUGH. and this whole situation still sucks…..