October 5, 2010

And it's done...

I didn't expect to feel this way.  I expected to be thrilled that I was done with chemo.  But this morning I found myself near tears a few times and unable to answer the question of "Are you happy to be done?".  I didn't want to feel this way, I wanted to feel confident and ready to move on.  My friend Amy was quick to assure me that it was normal to feel this way, which made me feel a bit better.  At least I was normal. 

Then I tried to go to bed around 8:30 tonight, I was tired and my legs were hurting already.  It's 10:50 and I'm still awake.  My mind just will not stop.  So, I decided to see if in one of my numerous cancer devotionals I could find one that addressed the feelings I was having.  Of course they did, haven't I learned that God always comes through?

(Loosly based on a devotional by Barbara Johnson, from "Praying Through Cancer", some words were changed and added to apply to me)
When my treatment ended and the doctor said I was done with chemo, I found myself in totally new territory.  Expecting to feel happy and full of joy, instead I found myself tense - and lonely.  Now that was an emotion I hadn't expected!  But that's truly how I felt.  Despite all my complaining about the ongoing tests and medications, the thought of not having weekly appointments made me feel like I was being tossed out on my own.

(Again, loosly based on a devotional by Joanne Arentson, from "Praying Through Cancer", some words were changed and added to apply to me)
Just one chemo treatment left.  Fear quietly became my companion as the day approached, not the fear of dying from breast cancer, but the fear of life beyond it.  I was dreading the end of the sessions, not because I enjoyed being fatigued and nauseated, rather, I'd have nothing left to hide behind once I was deemed healthy.  That scared me. 
Being treated for cancer afforded me a sort of protection.  Expectations were lower.  People were kinder.  Now I would be accountable for my "job" performance (a.k.a how clean my house was), my level of activity, my responses to people.  How would I fare without the familiar armor?
My words are never good enough, but the words of others do a fabulous job of telling how I'm feeling.  This is really heavy and I didn't expect to feel like this, it's going to take some prayer and working through to be get past it. 
Thank you to the people that stopped by today and for the numerous cards that I received, in the mail, at chemo and in my car!  Thank you for the flowers, the candy, the wine and the cake!  You are all fabulous, I appreciate you  helping me to celebrate a milestone in this journey!  Thank you to all of my friends that have listened to me complain, tried to understand what I'm feeling, been there for me no matter what.  You have all made this so much easier on me than it could have been.  (I'll accept my Acadamy Award now... doesn't that previous paragraph make you think of an awards speech?)
A snippet of the prayer from one of the devotionals:
You simply desire that I trust in you and do good, dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.  You tell me to delight myself in You and You will give me the desires of my heart.  Help me to be content with just that.  Help my focus to rest on trusting You, doing good, dwelling, enjoying life and delighting in You.

1 comment:

MandaKay said...

Praying for you going forward Lynette! The prayer at the end is beautiful! I love that Psalm!