So, let’s get the elephant out of the room first: I am a terrible blogger. I have legitimately been crazy busy with work (and doctor’s appointments and just life) but I also find it waaay easier to spend the free time I do have scrolling through other blogs or reading zillions of books or switching the rug in my living room for the tenth time.
So. There’s that :)
While I was busy being a terrible blogger, I completed the all-day, one-stop radiation treatment I spent a solid two months worrying about. The last big thing. The final blow, hopefully, for this tumor that keeps sneaking back.
I have to say — of all the things I’ve been afraid of in life, this one broke the mold. Usually reality is smoother and easier — and, you know, less painful — than your expectations. This was ten times worse.
The radiation itself was just as everyone described — no pain, no pressure, no taste, no smell. But prior to radiation, I had to have a metal frame placed on my head, and then sit in that frame for 6-7 hours.
It took about eight shots of local anesthetic (two in each insertion site) until my head really started to numb. Needles don’t usually bother me, but those little shots burn. I don’t think I really felt the insertion of the actual pins, but all that pressure and heavy, heavy squeezing…it hurt. Actually, I think it scared me more than anything.
If all the whining above isn’t embarrassing enough, here’s the real confession: as all this was going on, I cried. And asked for my mom. In a room full of surgeons and nurses and physicists. I’d never, ever done that.
My neurosurgeon was an absolute gem, as was my oncologist. They both spoke gently and slowly the whole time, telling me I was doing great. I wasn’t, of course, but it was a very kind lie.
The rest of the day went by in a haze. I’d brought a pile of work and it didn’t get done. There was a TV all set up for movies, but they didn’t get watched. I somehow ended up taking a nap — which I still don’t really get, given all the obstructions to moving my head. (I think we can chalk it up to the pain and anxiety meds, if we’re being honest.)
I’d expected the day to be hard and dramatic and BIG, the way the surgeries were. But it wasn’t. It just…happened.
And now it’s OVER.
I can’t quite let myself think about forever. Maybe if I have a clean six-month scan, I’ll feel comfortable saying this thing is really gone. Or maybe not. Right now, I’m just trying to live in the spaces in between.
But it’s over for now, and there’s a kind of strangeness in that. There was sweetness in this season, surprising and raw, and it’s hard to leave that…but it’s also hard to leave the bad things, and the mundane things, too. I’d gotten into routines — nothing meaningful, just things like shopping at the Target near my doctor’s office after appointments — and it’s hard to leave even that behind.
So that’s the weird space I’m in now. I’ll keep working to figure it out, and pushing through this busy season at work, and reading too many books and trying, trying, trying to be a better blogger.
And what happens next…well, it’ll happen.