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And suddenly, it's March

Sunday, March 07, 2021

Hard to believe another month has gone by, AND almost a year since California's first shut-down.

I completed radiation treatment last week and am really glad it's over. Unfortunately, I have been in some pain this week and really tired. Normal for this type of treatment, but it seemed to really catch up to me. It's been a good lesson in paying attention to my body, despite wanting to push for one more errand and despairing a bit at how messy the house is. I am feeling slightly better today, except that last night, my skin started to blister. Ugh. At my final appointment with my doctor, he said I could swim one week after my final treatment IF I didn't blister. Sigh. I'm also not exactly sure what to do for it. I had one full appointment with a nurse who went over skin care, but blistering wasn't discussed. I have messaged my doctor.

Radiation was difficult for me. The first week, the appointments were at all different times, mostly early evening. It was hard to have to get downtown at that time when we are used to eating on the early side and going to bed early. I couldn't eat much, as I lay on my stomach during treatment and it's a bit uncomfortable. Also, 2 of the 3 techs were MEN which made me really uncomfortable. I felt a bit of body shame and vulnerability and came out crying after etch session that first week. I swear, if I still drank alcohol, that would have been it. Instead, my husband asked if he could take me to BAskin Robbins! LOL. Very sweet, but too late for that as well!

I had a bit of a breakdown on Friday of that first week. I was supposed to have an appointment with my radiation oncologist, and out of the blue I got a message that I'd be having a video appointment. I kind of lost it. He called me right away and I give him a lot of credit for just listening. And, working with me to make some changes to treatment. After that, I only had women techs and no music playing. Oh I didn't mention - there was loud music playing, kind of hard rock. It was very disorienting for me and made me feel like I was just kind of on an assembly line. Very dehumanizing. Again, that changed Friday evening and I felt like I was heard. It's hard as a woman and a people pleaser to speak up. But I did. I have nothing to compare it too, but apparently in "normal" times they try to keep you with the same techs so you know them. Wasn't happening with fewer machines and longer days to accommodate those who needed treatment.

Doing art during this time was very important to me. Luckily, the instructor has youtube videos in addition to in person instruction. I was unable to attend in person as my appointments ultimately moved to 5:15 pm and my class is 3-5. It helped to be able to sit in the living room where I set up a table and draw and paint. Here's the penguin that I finished.
here's the giraffe.

My husband got his second vaccine and had a pretty rough day after. He recovered after being in bed, tired and achy, for one day. I have tried to get on a waiting list but it has been crazy. I'm hoping that more vaccines become available and that I'm able to get one as I have a cancer diagnosis now. Otherwise, I'm too young...

It has been nice and sunny here which is fine except we need rain. I'm hoping there is some more coming soon. I still use my drought techniques like the bucket in the shower but still.

Well, better close and get some lunch. Hugs to all and stay safe. Thanks for reading.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Such an amazing blog I’m adding you especially on my emoticon list. Stay strong so sorry to hear the blistering outcome has happened. Your artwork is outstanding..... emoticon emoticon
    57 days ago
    Very nice artwork. I must do more of this myself.
    57 days ago
  • ERIN1128
    I'm sorry it's been tough but I'm glad you spoke up for yourself! Good for you. As for shots, I've heard that second one really knocks you out for a day, I'm not looking forward to it. But at this point I don't even know when I'll get the first one, so we'll see. Hang in there!
    58 days ago
    Continuing with your art....good therapy....continue to rest as you body lets you know what it needs....
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    58 days ago
    Radiation can be really tough and I'm sorry that you have had such a difficult experience with it For blistering, I found that soaking plain gauze in sterile saline solution (the commercial kind you get at the drug store in big bottles) really offered me a lot of relief. But: the fatigue persisted for some time after the course of treatments was completed. All we can do about that is rest.

    All the best to you.
    58 days ago
  • MARTHA324
    You have really had a year haven't you??? Good news that radiation is done and it is too bad that sometimes the cure has such negative side effects.

    We are moving on and hopefully more and more people get the vaccine and we can resume some sort of normal in the months ahead.
    58 days ago
    So sorry about the early on appointments, and so glad that 1) you spoke up, and 2) they listened and made adjustments for you. Those drawings show you have a great deal of talent! I hope it gives you a lot of satisfaction!

    And I hope a solution for that blistering comes soon so you can get back in the pool! emoticon
    59 days ago
  • VHAYES04
    59 days ago
    Beautiful drawings! I hope you're recovery with radiation becomes smoother for you.
    59 days ago
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