Friday, February 16, 2007

So I've been thinking

Which, I suppose, explains the headaches... But no really. If there's any advantage to being holed up in my house with naught but my computer and various books for amusement, I've had a lot of time to think about things. Recently, given current events and holidays, my mind has mostly been preoccupied with the idea of love and the idea of death. Particularly death, since that's a bit more real for me now. Love is still a fairy-tale. I've realized that I'm not afraid of death. I by no means want to die. And I know that I'm not going to anytime soon. I still have a lot of stuff to do. But I've accepted that I will eventually die. And there's a pretty good chance I'll die before a lot of people my age. If something goes wrong in the hospital or if I get an infection. Or if the cancer comes back in any number of years, more malignant and spreading. While fairly unlikely, there is always that chance, that nagging doubt of complete remission. In terms of dying though, I've decided that if I can look back on everything that I've done so far and be happy with it, then it's okay. I figure people are only afraid of death because they feel their lives are incomplete; they have regrets. I am 20 years old. I still have a good number of years ahead to make bad choices. But as of now, I'm happy with what I've done so far. I mean, how many 20-year olds can say that in the same year, they were in a band, bartended, drank South African wine in southern France, drank Dutch beer on a rock in northern Ontario, worked full time at fantastic jobs in addition to school, and got cancer? I mean, come on, who does that? So, if I died any time soon, it would totally suck, but it would be okay. I think also that the fear of death is strongly associated with our fears of being forgotten. It's kind of like, if no one remembers you or anything you've done, what have you accomplished with your life? For the most part, we remember those who made an impact on other people, whether through words or actions or even personalities. Shakespeare, Lincoln, Nixon. Hell, Nixon helped shift the mentality of an entire country. In terms of me though, I have a written account of the person I was and am. I have pages and pages of ink exhibiting various stages of handwriting. Depression, happiness, boredom, pretty much every emotion you can think of, are all chronicled in variously sized notebooks. Even if no one ever reads them (which I hope someone does), my words will live on. And now, with this blog bit, some of them are accessible to people I've never met. But maybe something I say will mean something to them. Maybe not; it's kind of a crap shoot. But to die knowing that you have no regrets and that people will remember you for one reason or another, hopefully a pleasant one, I feel that's a pretty good goal to have. I'm pretty close to that goal now, and I hope to always be, no matter where my life takes me.

And that's my insight for the day. I don't know, I was at clinic this morning, and some of the people there are so sick. It's terrible because you know they're in pain. And it made me wonder, for the ones whose chemo doesn't work, are they afraid of dying? I don't know. I hope not. Anyway, death hasn't been the only thing on my mind. But I won't subject anyone to more musings. If you're interested in what I have to say, call. I'll come up with something mildly philosophic and insightful, just enough so that you're fooled into thinking I'm intelligent. (Don't tell, but most of the time I'm faking.) So that's it for today. Enjoy the long weekend. pax.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

It's rather chilly outside.

The clouds have been throwing up on the Chicago-area all day today. We have lots of snow. It's funny: snow is nice to look at, but when you start digging into foot-high drifts of it, it gets real old real fast. Basically, this verbal fluff is preluding the fact that I shoveled our driveway this evening, with the help of me padre. I reiterate the fact that snow is much heavier than it looks. I am pretty freaking tired now though, especially after having had to wake up at 6 this morning. The good news is that I did indeed make a snow-angel in our front yard. I actually made two, as well as a tramped-out heart in honor of the Hallmark holiday tomorrow. Hah, like I need an excuse to eat chocolate. But I won't get into tomorrow. I'm going to read books and watch V for Vendetta. The usual quiet, neutropenic, wander around my house day. And the way things are going, I'll probably end up shoveling again. Yay winter.

In other news, I went to clinic today for chemo. I ended up waiting about two and a half hours for them to clear and finally bring up my drug from the pharmacy. Today's was the special butt-shot drug. It took all of ten seconds; I waited around for maybe ten minutes so they could monitor me, make sure I didn't fall out of my chair and start twitching on the floor; and then we headed home. And that was it. It's funny too because apparently the road we took home was actually closed in the afternoon. So, I guess despite having to wait for a good long while at clinic, the 6 a.m. wake-up was worth it.

My brain's really fuzzy right now. I blame it on the chemo. Because I can and no one's going to dispute it. I think I mostly just need to sleep though. I actually have a decent headache, and if it's not a direct result of the chemicals, they certainly aren't helping matters. Anyway, so I apologize if this post isn't up to my usual level of trenchant yet deliciously addictive prose. I will try and be more on top of my game the next time I write. Yup, that's all I've got. alright, pax.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Unfortunately, this installment will be lacking.

What exactly it will be lacking, I am not sure of. I am, however, sure that I don't have any exciting new updates on the war against drugs. I mean cancer. damnit, and typing that just reminded me that I have two pills I need to take, right now. Crap, I'll be back. And I'm back. I didn't choke on the horsepill, although the smaller one gave me some grief. Honestly, I am the worst person to have gotten cancer. There are so many things to remember. 5 pills in the morning, one of which I take at night too. And then there's the really big one that I only have to take three times a week, but that's twice a day as well. Not anymore, but when they were giving me one particular chemo drug, I had to put drops in my eyes every six hours. And I have to remember to flush my lines every other day... I'm a generally organized person, but that's because I absolutely have to be. My memory is actually terribly erratic. If my life was messy, I would be so lost all the time. I found some of my handwritten schedules I made for myself this past semester, and they were pretty much scripted to the hour. Haha, if I can't remember to take the nightly pill that will save me from getting pneumocystic pneumonia, God only knows what will happen when I enter the professional world and have deadlines and other people expecting things from me. Should be a good time.

Otherwise, that's about it. They transfused my blood and platelets yesterday. My nose is no longer bleeding like a faucet with a constant drip (when your platelets are low, your blood has trouble clotting, therefore wounds tend to stay open longer. Also a good time). And I don't get as dizzy when I stand up quickly. Basically, blood is a good thing. Every time you stand up without feeling your world start spinning and that blackness coming in around the edges of your vision, thank your normal blood counts. Mmm, there's nothing better than oxygen making it to the brain. Tomorrow I get another drug pushed into me, L-asparaginase. Chemo, kills cell, blah blah. I sort of psych myself out whenever I have to go to the clinic. I know nothing will happen, no side effects or reactions, but I still get anxious about going. I'm going to blame that on the chemo side-effects (anxiety is listed as a side-effect for some drugs). Haha. Or me being a wimp. Either way, I look forward to its being over. Snow is coming to Chicago, and I'm still on house arrest until my immune system gets back to relative-normal. (Incidentally, it's not really that bad. I drink too much hot chocolate and poke around a lot on the computer. I also wrote two new songs today, bringing my set list to about eleven songs. Sweet.) Well, hopefully this post wasn't as lacking as I initially thought it would be. I always seem to write more than I planned. Oh well. Happy Tuesday sad toad.