Living in a fog. That is what I have been doing lately. I don't know how other people suffering from cancer and other diseases might describe their daily lives, but that is how I describe it.
Prior to being diagnosed with cancer three months ago, I was, annual flu or cold excepted, a very healthy person. I was blessed to have never known what it is like to live your life not feeling physically good for a long period of time. Now I do. It isn't easy -- physically or emotionally.
It is like living in a deep, dense fog. A fog you'd prefer not to have to move around within. Blinding. Disorienting. Seemingly endless. And lonely. Very lonely.
Nausea, vomiting, and very high (as in over 103) fevers became the regular. There were days when it was all I could do to get from my bed to the living room. Once there keeping Gilmore Girls going on Netflix all day was not an insignificant task (why do they insist on reminding you of your couch potato state by asking if you are still watching after a handful of episodes and then make you press a button?!). Eating became even more of a chore than it already was. My life became small and focused on finding physical comfort from moment to moment. I wondered when, if ever, I would feel up to sitting up for more than 15 minutes at a time or having a quality conversation with my husband. Showering was an activity that required a nap after completion. Big questions about life and death could not be entertained, there was no energy for that. This is what it felt like for me to feel absolutely terrible for a full month.
Just when I thought I couldn't take another day of feeling so incredibly bad, the fog mercifully began to lift last Friday. I know many were praying that this would be case, and I think your prayers (and my cries) were heard, and answered. It has lifted more and more each day to the point where today I actually left the house on my own, ate a full lunch, and am contemplating a walk after finishing this post. Sounds small, but trust me when I tell you it's not. I am thrilled at the prospect and am hoping I have enough energy to make it a decent jaunt.
The funny thing (ironic, not haha) is that without the difficulty of the last month, I am sure I would not be appreciating today as much as I am. I needed the fog to see the beauty in the sun. I guess is just like needing to experience pain in order to feel pleasure. Or hot to feel cold. Sad to feel happiness. As humans it's these opposites in life that help us feel, remind us that we're alive and that life is about the good and the bad, the ups and the downs, the fog and the sun.
I know that the fog will return, side effects being what they are; cancer being what it is. This may even happen in the next couple of hours when I usually get an evening fever. But for now I am off to enjoy the sunshine before the fog rolls in again.