Quote of the Day: “I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live up to what light I have.” Abraham Lincoln
Exercise Log: Last night Joe and I walked 2.22 miles. I wanted to add a few more miles while I still had energy. This morning, Patti, Sue B. and Kathy Cahoon did 3.51 miles and then I did another 2 miles on stairmaster making my final total +.27. I feel better today than I did two weeks ago. I don’t have the constant runny nose and I don’t know if that is a side-effect of the Nuelasta but I’m happy not to have it. I feel a bit shaky but still have some energy, which I’m grateful for. Mount Olympus looked gorgeous this morning- low clouds hovered over the mountain. The cool air felt fabulous on my skin.
Sue O. brought us dinner- chicken salad, fruit- raspberries, pineapple and strawberries, and the best whole wheat bread. Also, this wonderful “Survivor” shirt!
On Tuesday, during chemo, Jill (the girl getting an infusion next to me) was telling me that she had she been to Phoenix and had put towels all around her to keep out of the sun. I have actually been trying to get sun every chance I can get because I didn’t want to have that white face that we all associate with cancer and chemo. She asked the nurses about sun and chemo and they said that you should stay out of the sun because it can cause dark blotches on your skin. I started looking at my legs and sure enough, I do have larger dark marks- they kind of look like large freckles but definitely I have more than I did prior to chemo. So, I don’t mind them that much on my legs but don’t want them on my face. Sun hasn’t been that much of an issue yet, but it is just the first of June!
Yesterday, as I was driving near Skyline, I saw my class walking towards the school. They had taken a “fieldtrip” to Einstein’s and then were coming back. It seemed as though I was cheating to not be with them- watching them but no longer a part of them, instead traveling in my car to run an errand. I first noticed one familiar student and then another and then it dawned on me that they were all “my” students. They looked happy and carefree as one does on those warm, sunny days when school is nearing the end and most of the hard work of the year is over and you can take it easy, enjoy life a little more as you look forward to summer. I love summer vacation. When you teach school, those first days of summer feel like you have been given the greatest gift- time. All the sudden, your days are free and you get to choose exactly what you will fill them with. It’s what all teachers work hard all year for- putting in extra hours knowing they will be rewarded in the future with summer vacation. June seems so far from middle of August when classes start again, it’s the month when all those school cares seem meaningless.
This part of the chemo- trying to deal with the side effects of the medicine- is the most daunting. It’s when the doubts creep in and you start to feel so much a victim, vulnerable to all the worries of the disease and discouraged that life is passing you by. You have to take care of your health needs all while life is going on around you and everyone else, it would seem, is living life without stuggle. That’s when inspiring messages seem to help. Here’s a thought from Elizabeth Kubler Ross: “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”