Diet, Exercise, and Showering…

So I am back from the third round of my ICE therapy for this annoyingly “low-grade” T-Cell lymphoma.

(if it’s so low grade, why the hell is my chemo kicking my ass?)

The thing about chemo is that you shouldn’t let it throw you off of your regular activities – namely, eating, moving, and taking a shower once in a while.

Chemo drugs are essentially poison, ’cause, let’s face it, the whole point of chemo is to try and poison all the crap cells (which are still YOUR cells) before the healthy stuff gets taken in as well (this is obviously simplifying the shit out of the whole process).

Food is the big thing you have to take care of, not only eating things you like (thanks to chemo my mouth only likes things that are slightly sweet, but that causes problems ’cause desserts still don’t carry enough nutrition in them to sustain the body through the recovery.) With healthy enough food (here healthy means it has to be nutritious, I don’t care if you do it via biryani or via broccoli, when you are recovering from chemo, almost everything is fair game to be consumed).

The other thing is, you gotta keep moving. Chemo has you feeling like crap and too tired to do anything else either, so you gotta force yourself out of bed, just walk to the living room, take in some sunlight from a different window, the body needs the movement.

Then there is showering, yeah, don’t forget to shower, you might not realize it, but your body is most likely exuding the smell of medicines as your body is filtering that shit out.

Medicines don’t smell good, believe me, they smell like you are one step away from mummification.

So yeah, that’s my quick and quiet advice on how to deal with shitty chemotherapy, ’cause I didn’t follow any of this advice and had to spend an extra week at the crappy hospital (my hospital is legit crap, but what can you do?).

Til later folks!

Preparation by Proxy (Part 2)

Sorry for the delay between posts folks, whenever I have good days I kind of just enjoy myself, but now that I have a couple of days before I do my next round of chemo, it’s time to get some posts up, I know you all have been dying to read more of my thoughts.

So I previously talked about how my aunt had cancer and how she dealt with it basically prepared me for this pain in the ass problem (the nerve damage though was a bonus that I didn’t account for).

So my aunt was kind of a grump with the cancer (in retrospect, I feel like I was overly harsh towards her, though to be fair, I am considerably less grumpy than she is…but mainly because of how she was).

My aunt’s cancer was terrible, and it wore her down physically, and she was a person who always needed to work, so being weak and shackled with tiredness and all this pain in the ass stuff that comes with being a cancer patient must have been beyond torturous for her (I realize that now, back then, her constant complaining got a bit wearying after a while).

So when I finally got my diagnosis of cancer (it was a long and arduous diagnosis, will tell you about it one day), I strengthened my resolve…’cause no one needs to hear my whine and complain as I go through chemo. Instead I decided to face this problem like I faced a lot of things, with sheer “fuck-you-let’s-grin-and-bear-it” attitude.

It’s difficult and I can totally see not everyone able to do it. But if you can, go for it…it makes for talking so much easier. When you are the goofy one and laughing and showing things aren’t as bad as they seem (in fact it was terrible, I was stressed out all the time, but having people laughing at my general weirdness really helped…rather than them being worried all the time) your brain sometimes just goes with the flow and makes you think that it isn’t that bad either.

So yeah, I wanted to approach my cancer (and related troubles) in exactly the opposite way my aunt did…it’s why I do it head on and smiling all the time.

(I kind of wish I hadn’t run out of money though, but being unemployed for three years does that to you…)

Even now, gotta keep smiling, being goofy, and don’t let it get you down. That’s my advice.

Though if you need to cry, go for it too, crying feels good (but don’t cry all the time, you are going to get dehydrated).

Preparation by Proxy (Part 1)

The biggest hardship that my illness has been on is not me, but my mother.

The past fifteen years have not been kind to her. First her husband (my dad, don’t worry not having issues, just being literary) had kidney failure and she spent two years taking care of him and trying to get a kidney donor. Finally, he gets his kidney transplant and seems to be getting back on his feet, but then her sister’s cancer (breast cancer that metastasized in her brain) was getting worse by the day. Since my mother is the eldest of the siblings, she took it upon her shoulders to make sure that her sister was getting the best care that was possible.

My aunt passed away in 2013…and then in 2014 I fall supremely ill with my tumor and cancer and no longer being able to walk (I still have major walking issues, but got better…though this chemotherapy has kind of retarded my progress).

When there was first suspicion that I might have cancer I remember thinking back about how my aunt dealt with her cancer. She was anger incarnate and went after each and any possible treatment that could cure her. She was optimistic, but man was she angry.

Her downtimes were her worst, post-treatment she was weak and whiny and had to have everything just so.

I thought about her a lot that as I waited for my own diagnosis…

Mentality

The thing about cancer is that it is a mental game.

Your body is crapping out on you, no matter how healthy you were, your body is now rebelling and it’s decided to take your brain with you.

Don’t let the bastard win.

The only thing you can do is prep to fight. This may sound cheesy (’cause it is) but letting yourself fall into despair is not really worth it (this of course doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t get sad or depressed or miserable even).

But in the end what’s the point?

Being miserable, being sad, being depressed only makes you feel worse and just make people pity you more and just make the whole situation more dour.

So fuck it

Take a big step, greet the damn cancer or what have you with a bear hug…and squeeze the life out of that asshole.

There is another good thing about being positive…you see, I am not a very positive guy by nature (I tend to overthink things), but the face that I show is one of positivity, ’cause it keeps people from saying stupid things (“be strong”, “life is full of battles”…ugh) and they actually respond to you and make you feel like a regular human being.

So if all else fails, take that with you, you get better conversations with a positive face!