Chemo Is Like….
Author: Shannon Miller
I’ve decided that chemo is a lot like my golf game. Yes, they are both pretty ugly but they are also both very deceptive. I can have an absolute horrible day on the golf course, balls everywhere, can’t hit straight for anything but I get to that last hole, knowing that this will be the LAST time I ever chase this silly little white ball around a course of it’s choosing, when out comes the perfect drive! The magnificent and effortless forward movement down the green and that short easy putt to finish off a great day of golf! Funny how that last moment is what defines the game and keep you coming back no matter how horrific the other four hours happened to be.
I’m feeling a little stir crazy after this past weekend which is I’m sure why my mind has wondered to golf. Anything to get me out of the house. But it’s been a good learning experience. It’s important to learn how you deal with each cycle so you know what to expect. My first yucky week landed me back in the hospital with severe dehydration when I couldn’t keep ANYTHING down. I was absolutely miserable and simply couldn’t understand how I would make it this way for 9 weeks!
Of course a couple days, plenty of fluids later and we were back on track. The best thing I learned after that first week is that it doesn’t last forever. By the end of that first chemotherapy cycle I was feeling great. A little more winded than usual but I had most of my old energy back.
Going into the yucky week of my second cycle, last week, I was much better prepared. I knew which medications tended to work for me and I knew I needed extra fluids to keep my blood pressure up and ward off some of the nausea. I also knew that I wouldn’t be working this past weekend…and that was okay!
While I will continue to call it my rough, yucky, ugly, etc. week I now fear it less because I know what’s coming and how to handle it. My humble suggestion, get a journal and write what you are feeling and doing each day. You’ll be able to look back as you head into your next chemotherapy cycle and prepare for the days you won’t be feeling as well. More importantly, you’ll also get the reminder that there are good days coming, too!