The life in the diary – XVIII

Fiction
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May 12, 2013 (cont’d)

Today, I am feeling the heaviness that follows the realization of having lost a whole part of my body.

I have lost a whole part of my body….

What had they said when I was first diagnosed? “it is quite likely that it is only a part of it is affected; we will only take this part and leave the rest so that you can have a functional gland, however partially.”

I had felt good about this; knowing that I would not give up on the whole thing. I would not lose it altogether.

Now, there is none of it.

A part of me which served me well for a very long time. A part of me that has been separated from me in cold blood, examined in a damp, formaldehyde smelling laboratory, dissected and stained in I do not know how many different ways, parts of which were put in a biological waste bin, only to be incinerated later at an unknown place to me. Twice for that matter…Twice..

Twice I said goodbye to a part of me.

I am sure with no care or love it was handled. Maybe the pathologists said “There, another piece of specimen. Let me finish this and then meet with my friends this evening. Cannot wait..” Thinking about this me makes me sob more violently.

Poor thing… After all these years being a part of me and doing a miraculous job, it developed sickness and it is gone.

It made me sick, too.

Should I hate it?

Hate is a stronger feeling than love, but no, I can not hate it.

No matter how many times I think about blaming it for my disease; for feeling like my body betrayed me; for feeling frightened and saddened about the darkness and pain I endure or for the anxiety caused by thought of what the future may bring to me; or how victimized I feel knowing that I now was literally a damaged goods, no, blame did not play well. These made me frightened and sad, but I never, not even once, felt blame towards it.

I rather blame myself.

For losing it.

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The life in the diary – XVIII
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no headline today

While I really am interested in increasing awareness about the experiences of cancer patients, survivors, caregivers, and family and friends who are all affected by cancer, I must admit reading, thinking, and talking about cancer makes me “feel” it a little bit closer. And it is depressing.

To change the subject, I started reading and thinking about other diseases and got more depressed.

There is a limit to what one can undertake.

I think there is a survival mechanism somewhere in us that gives this feeling a break and directs us away from distress and helps find us things we can enjoy.

For me, that will be remembering the activities I enjoyed, like that 2nd hand store I like going around. I have been there more than 3 months ago. Time to re-visit. See what I can see, what I can find to purchase.

The life in the diary – IV

Fiction

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February 6, 2013

I am in the hospital bed – my surgery was two days ago. I woke up 2 hours after it. The doctor did not visit me yet, but one of the residents did. She said the doctor did a good job and the surgery went well. My vital statistics are good and I am into recovery. I will stay in the hospital a couple of more days just to make sure there is no serious post-surgery concerns before I can be released. The resident says my doctor will tell me the future course of my medical care. I am waiting; it has been two days with no sign. I feel deprived but at the same time, I do not care. If it was a serious issue, I am sure my doctor would just fire the news.

The bed is not bad but the other patient in the room is noisy – I am happy for her that she has visitors; everybody needs that. But I am not happy with the long loud phone conversations. I feel like I know her entire ordeal, which is dare. She has broken her ankle and it got infected. I have seen the foot – it is all brownish, reddish, blackish colour. I felt for her. She hopes to get our of this without losing her foot. I totally understand and wish her good. I seem to be doing better than her.

I feel a lot better now prior to the surgery. I am not shaky or scared anymore. I am sure the surgery removed the bad cells and we will do our best to remove the rest too. It is good that the bulk of them is gone, the task at hand seems easier now. I know deep down that I will handle that well. It will be over sometime.

I have three different nurses come and check me, draw blood to do the tests. They are so nice; nurses should be given a higher level of respect and appreciation. For a patient there is nothing better than a smiling and affectionate look and words. On one occasion each, two of the nurses almost made me cry. The first one was a nurse who was trying to withdraw blood and was not able to find the vein or get the blood in two trials. She had to go thru my hand and she apologized for it. It was thin butterfly syringe that is really kind to my nerves. And when the nurse saw the blood filling the vial, she exclaimed with joy and said “bull’s eye!”. She is a sweetheart and I am wishing the best of everything for her. The second nurse I have seen only once so far and she asked me whether I would like her to help me with my bath and wash my back…. I wanted to cry so hard…. Affection is the kindest act ever. May she find happiness, health, and whatever she is wishing in life.

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The life in the diary – IV

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