Hopeful for tomorrow
I was released to home on Monday, the agreement I had to make to get that release was the self administration of IV antibiotics. It was either that or stay in the hospital until Thursday. This may seem like an easy decision for most but for me, I was more than concerned about having to administer my own antibiotics. As crazy as it may sound, I have never watched anyone administer or actually really do anything regarding my care. I watch the chemo drip into the line and I watch as the nurses push all the buttons on the machines that administer the drugs, but I have purposefully avoided watching the minutiae of how all of these processes are completed. I don't want nor have I seen anyone draw my blood, access my port or put in an IV. I simply engage in conversation with the nurse and force myself to not see what is happening to my body.
It has struck me hard in the past couple days as I have been forced to watch myself administer drugs, that I may very well have not actually grasped the entire big picture. I have said it many times, "All I have to do is just show up." This is a very real statement but I think in saying this, actually owning this statement, I have in a way, disconnected myself from the reality that when I show up and procedures are happening, they are really happening to me. Try as I might to compartmentalize this: Family goes here, work goes here, friends go here, cancer goes here, I can no longer detach myself and jump exclusively independent from box to box. Cancer rides along with me.
The process of giving my antibiotics is not near as bad as I thought, sterility is key. The difficult part is really for the first time, not only watching but doing the process myself. My port has remained accessed, which means that there is a 3/4" needle in my chest where my port is implanted. There is tubing hanging out of the needle and I administer the drugs through the end of the tubing. Normally, the port is not accessed and the device simply looks like a bump under my skin with tubing running up through my jugular vein.
Sitting at my kitchen table and administering these antibiotics via "slow push" gives me some very intentional thinking time. I am again reminded that while I have so many people surrounding me with love and support, I am the only one that can walk this walk. I never expected this to be my life.
I have become quiet, being in my own head for the past couple days. The time of laughter and joking left on 4 South when I was discharged. I feel like I am going though another stage of the grieving process, fear and sadness. Today I am afraid. Today I am sad.
Today I have cried at the thought of my loss. My loss of independence, loss of health, loss of freedom of mobility outside my house, upcoming loss of my life. I am sad at what this will look like and I have become quiet trying to figure it all out. I don't have the answers. Today I just have the feelings and they are difficult.
I know tomorrow will be better, it always is, but today, I just want to curl up on the couch with my dog and wait for tomorrow to come. I know I will work through this. I know I will continue to fight and I know my days will look better. I'm just depleted right now. You all have been with me through the ups and the downs and I have promised myself that honesty and precision of language will be my focus. This is a low day.
I appreciate you all. I say it often, hopefully enough that you know, I love you.