I finally got on the stick yesterday and made some plans – mental health plans. I know some of you are breathing a sigh of relief. “Bout time, eh? When cancer paid me a visit, I was leading a somewhat independent life. And it abruptly stopped – all focus was turned to the surgery and then chemo. I wrote before how I let other people take over my care – I was overwhelmed and only concentrating on what I had to do that moment (sleep, eat, take pills, repeat).
Cancer hit me like a freight train – only now am I looking to get out from under its maddening spell – I need to plan – and the first thing I want to work on is how to manage having a real life after this last chemo (well, for three months). I thought I would automatically become better after following all the rules of surgery (no, the bruises are not gone yet and I still have neuropathy in my legs (loss of lymph nodes they removed for testing). My hair is still gone – a slight fuzz covers my head – and my eyebrows are gone too – looks too weird, man. I still tire easily and sleep eludes me at times from worry (take your pill for that, Janice – there’s a pill for everything.)
I went to Kaiser Mental Health and had an intake meeting. I’ll be attending two classes: How to live with a chronic illness and Having Self-compassion. I also was assigned to a therapist who specializes in health issues. You can call my cancer an issue all right. A big issue – it’s making me someone i don’t feel comfortable with anymore.
I resent the new changes I need to make – I am short with my care-givers – I know it’s help, but I want my old life back – guess the sooner I realize that it’s not going to be coming back, I’ll get my head outa my butt. As I rebuilt my life from my first marriage, it was a different time and I had more ideas and energy. Now I depend on people going to the store for me and fixing my meals. I am grateful to my caregivers, but I can’t seem to get out of my own stubborn way. Not feeling much like myself – maybe the talk therapy can guide me back on track – a new track, so I don’t live in the past that much.
Wish me luck. My niece made me a painting that says Live. I have it in my bedroom so I can see it when I wake up. Thanks, Jilly – it’s part of my new plan to change my perspective.