rolling over

The other night in a dream I looked down at myself and where there is now piles of gauze over giant steri-strips there was nothing but a simple, long, almost attractive scar running down my belly and past my navel. When I told Dawn she said, “that’s a good sign.”

But when I awoke the following morning it was after a nearly sleepless night spent tossing and turning, and trying still to get comfortable. After two nights in a row of taking a dose of pain medication to help me sleep better, I decided to forgo the meds from now on, and I guess I paid the price. I tried to move my body (and mind) forward into the day, but couldn’t muster the energy. I teleconferenced in to a staff meeting for work, though I had planned on being there in person. I managed to stay focused throughout the phone meeting, but it was quite hard to hear distant colleagues through the phone line — like being in a crowded shop is for me now, my hearing still suffering from the rounds of high dose chemo in November and December.

Today I’m feeling much better, having somehow achieved a decent night’s sleep sans pain medication. I know that being active, and increasing my physical activity is the only true path to normal health, normal life, so I’m doing everything I can to push myself to take walks, and be up on my feet (standing upright!) as much as I can. I can’t help but think that — though I was feeling mostly back to normal following the high dose chemo hospital stays by the time I went back to Indianapolis to lie down for this surgery — this lack of energy and motivation is a cumulative effect of the last nearly four months of cancer treatment. Sometimes it’s hard to envision a Mike like the old one.

Sometimes, I don’t want to envision him, because I’m not that guy anymore — aren’t I more than that now? Hasn’t cancer given me something greater than what it has taken away?

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2 Responses to “rolling over”

  1. Yes. Being ripped apart creates the possiblity of coming back together again in a new form… an opprotunity for re-creating yourself. It’s one of the gifts of illness, but its not a given. You have worked hard to derive every possible benefit you can, by riding the wave of each intense moment of the experience. I agree with Dawn that your dream was a very good sign. A message that all is well, in spite of what seems. I have to say,though, that if I should ever get the chance to talk to whoever designed the “Suffering is the Best Teacher” system” I will have plenty to say about that. Surely there’s a better way! Georgia

  2. I agree with Georgia. It is really OK to give yourself the time to recover that your body needs. I am so glad that you can visualize yourself being whole again. But rest is very good for you. I am speakingfrom the position of someone who has always tried to suck it up and muscle through. You will be Mike the wholeman again. Be sweet to yourself, pretend you are Dawn and treat yourself as you would her. XXOKitty

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