Thursday, August 23, 2012

The voices in my head

Today I had to go get a blood draw in preparation for my annual oncology appointment.  I was busy at work, had to walk 20 minutes from my office to the appointment, and was running late.  I didn't have two minutes to think about the appointment...

Until I was halfway there.  And then, without my permission, my head went to a dark place.

It sounded like this:

Man, I hate going to this place.  All that chemo, all those horrible memories.  Ugh.  It's been a while since I've been there.  I hope no cancer grew in that time.  God, what if they find something?  I had a headache last week, my first migraine, but maybe it wasn't a migraine, maybe it was brain mets.  I can't think like that....but it's so scary.  One little blood test, and it can turn my whole world upside down.  What would I do?  If it came back?  It could be back.  It could.  What would I tell Katherine?  I would try to be calm.  I would tell her, "We did this before, we could do it again."  Last time I was really public about it, maybe I could fake it this time....wear a wig all the time, keep working, not tell anyone except my closest people.  Maybe I could do chemo after work.  Could I work through it?  Would I lose my job because I couldn't work?  How could I put Katherine through that again?  And oh no, what if I put her through divorce and then I died?  How could she stand it?  Maybe I could have Bryan move back into the basement when I got really sick, to transition him back in to take care of her more.  Maybe I shouldn't get divorced, because if I'm just going to die anyway, I just can't put Katherine through it....I could put up with Bryan for I ready to die?  I don't want to die...

And this is how it was.  I stopped myself when I realize how quickly I'd spiraled downward, I got it together, I got into the building.

The very first thing I heard upon walking in the doors was, "My friend just lost the battle after eight years."  I'm just over seven years out, and as I walk into the cancer institute that is what I hear.  Is it is a sign?  Please don't let it be a sign.

I make it through the blood draw, and then escape as quickly as I can back to work.  I sit down and promptly start sobbing, and my boss hugs me and promises me that I'm well and that it will all be okay.

It'll all be okay.  I'm allowed to get divorced because I'm not going to die., so Katherine won't have to deal with any more pain caused by me.  I'm going to live a long, long time.  Right?

I get test results in a week or so.


  1. Dearest PollyAnna-
    I will think of you over the next week,remember to take it *One Day At A Time*.
    I too have loud invasive negative thoughts. My mind plays out a lifetime of every single thing that will go wrong will go wrong. They are so destructive.

    Treat yourself to a few little things that may help you pass this loooooooooong week.
    -a pedicure?
    -lay on a hillside to watch clouds(the big white puffy ones) with pup resting beside you.
    -treating you & daughter to gelato! (I love gelato-try a dark chocolate scoop with a bright fresh fruit scoop)
    -buy yourself a small bunch of flowers
    -eat crackers and chocolate in bed? lol

    I hope your week goes smoothly.
    wishing you well.

  2. It's impossible not to be pulled into a dark downward spiral at times. But you have so much that's good in your life, and Katherine who needs you to keep your head above water.

    At my darkest times, including waiting through some difficult moments, knowing I had to be around for my children got me through. A great deal.

    I'm betting on you, and all your strength.

  3. Mum, welcome to my little online world - I'm so glad you've found me. I loved every single one of your ideas, and last Saturday (coincidentally right after I got the good news) I went swimming in my favorite alpine lake with Katherine. The hiking, the forest, and the freezing water (under warm sunshine) were TRULY just what I needed. Thank you for reminding me to do some self care!

    And BLW, your bet means a lot to me. I continue to think of you as very wise, and it comforts me to know that you believe in me. I am strong, but in those dark moments that is difficult to remember until someone reminds me, and that someone was you. Thank you!