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The Week in Review

Some weeks are easier than others. But such is life, right?

This one was a challenge that started with a stiff neck. I wondered if it was the result of my embracing the approach of fall as I opened the windows and flipped on the fan, the cool, crisp air blowing on me as I slept. But then, it became painful and swollen, so much so that the doctor ordered an ultrasound that ultimately revealed a blood clot that had firmly lodged in my jugular vein. It was a sobering diagnosis, a sudden trip into the land of “what ifs.” Blood thinners were perscribed as I tried to figure out creative ways not to move too much since I certainly didn’t want to dislodge the thing. That came at the same time that my blood was pronounced unfit for chemo, the platelets and white blood cells having dipped dangerously low. My body had decided that it no longer wanted to cooperate.

Sigh... And I had been doing so well…

So this has been a time for regrouping as waves of fatigue have knocked me for a loop. Ok, that’s a borderline mixed metaphor, since the debilitating fatigue kept me in bed for much of the week. I managed to watch lots of mindless TV as I felt too lethargic to do much of anything else. But I also learned that eBay is a lot of fun when you can’t get into the stores to shop. I may have ordered a couple of things to compensate for the fact that my Kohl's cash expired before I could spend it. I am, after all, only human.

Most of all, I tried not to fret as I worried what skipping a week of chemo might mean for my treatment plan, including surgery. I hoped the alien was still stunned by the five previous poisonous attacks and wouldn’t rear his ugly head. With so much uncertainty, it is hard to keep the imagination in check.

But there were blessings to be had ….

I got several lovely cards in the mail, including a special one I receive weekly from my former college roommate whom I haven’t seen in decades, and another from a sweet friend who sent a blessed cloth, along with a reminder that she was praying for me.

My dear friend, a buddy with whom I can both laugh and cry, came to visit twice. We piled up in the bed and chatted away. She sipped beer; I had water. I even mustered enough energy to meet a couple of girlfriends for lunch. I wolfed down a burger (with cheese) as we spent the afternoon reminiscing about some of our crazy moments.

I am still not back up to speed. My skin is mottled red, which tells me the blood is still not where it should be. I can do about an hour around the house before I have to take to my bed. But I am grateful to have made it this far without my body protesting too much as I have pumped it full of toxins it in an attempt to kill the alien. Oh, and no closets collapsed this week. Thank goodness, since I am still trying to get the first mess under control.

The great thing about time is that it marches on. One moment is replaced by another. So I have high hopes for the week which is to come. I am poised and ready for chemo as I get a little stronger every day, but as this has ultimately taught me, I never really know what lies ahead. Guess that is true of most of us on a journey.

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