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My last radiation treatment

1:30pm Tuesday January 13th 2015

How I’m feeling: Excited, anxious – maybe a little numb. 

My last radiation session is in an hour!!

What a BIG day! Although for some reason, I feel like others are more excited about it than I am. Maybe it’s because it hasn’t quite kicked in yet. That or I’m protecting myself. I haven’t told many people at all that today is the day and it may be because I almost feel guilty that I don’t seem to be as enthused about it as everyone else is – or at least am not able to outwardly express and communicate it yet. It is a lot to take it. It has been A LOT to take in.

In a way, I’ve been trying to not get so excited. Mostly, because I’m scared of being as hurt as I was in Summer 2014 when I was on track to move forward with radiation, celebrated and then got hit with some hard to digest news: that the chemo I had received didn’t quite do the job – and I had to move forward with a much more aggressive treatment plan. It hurt me a lot. I felt defeated. I felt like I had done something wrong. I felt like I had failed. It felt like I was knocked off of a ladder, kicked in the stomach really hard and left on the floor throbbing with pain and to bleed. The one thing I did not feel was alone – thanks to all of you!

So, I guess I have a little bit of a wall up. I do however know that it is important to stay positive and hopeful. That approach has worked out for me so far – through this chapter and through all my life. In fact, I don’t even have to try. It’s difficult for me not to be! There are just too many things to be grateful for. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: for every one $#&% thing that has happened, I can think of at least 10 awesome things to be grateful for. And so, while I’m not celebrating yet I’m (cautiously) optimistic, excited and hopeful. Technically, I’m not able to celebrate being cancer-free and I can’t quite call myself a cancer “survivor” just yet, but I am survivING. I’m surviving this every day. And trust me, often as each day comes to an end it feels like I’ve made it through a battle. Definitely celebration-worthy.

Radiation has been tough – but a freakin’ piece of cake compared to chemo. The treatment sessions and the after effects. The difficulty I have been experiencing from it involves discomfort in my esophagus. I haven’t had a good night’s rest in a while because of the pain in my throat and it has gotten worse with each session. I am having difficulty drinking and eating – and I have a terrible cough. The other day, I learned that things will get worse before they get better as it takes a while for the radiation to do it’s thing. I also still have all of those chemo meds flowing through me from my last session (in October) – which was a really high dose chemo cocktail. It’ll take a while to feel “normal” – whatever normal is. I don’t know if I remember what “normal” energetic Carolyn feels like. It’s been a while – almost a year! Those of you who know me well know that I already start off with A LOT of energy – and so it takes a whole lot to knock me down.

Wish me luck with today’s session! Oh my gosh – MY LAST SESSION (for now at least). I’ve yet to push the panic button (yes, they give me a panic button) – and I don’t plan on breaking that streak today!

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