You know you have cancer, right?

Arghh. My body says,
**YAAAwwwNNN** My brain says, Are we done resting yet, huh huh, Are we doing
something, going somewhere? Why are we on the couch again, huh? Huh? It’s LIGHT
out! Look, there’s even SUN! Are we going outside, huh?
Apparently other people are much more compassionate to the
fact that I’m recovering from my third round of chemo than I am.
Even the question, as posed by my nurse this morning, “If I were going through chemo, and said
I was tired a lot, what would you tell me?” gets my response of, “Well, I know I would tell you to take it easy, but for me…”
It’s hard to let myself acknowledge that I am tired, that my
body is not working up to the speed it was, and even simple things (like being
awake) make me tired. Especially when I’ve withstood the actual treatment so
well, and don’t have any major physical repercussions, I feel like I should
(ahem SHOULD – watch word for nonsense and perfectionism) be able to do what I
used to.
I used to take hour-long walks; after my last rounds of chemo,
I was able to take half-hour, and that was fine, acceptable. Now, I can take 10
minutes, really, without needing to sit down and rest.
Because of this development, however, I have firmly made my
plans for my next chemo treatment – I’d been asking my doctor if I could move
the next round earlier, so that I could ensure that I would be healthy enough
to go on the annual New Year retreat I go on in mid-January. She got back to me
today saying I could start on Wednesday if I wanted …
Seeing, or feeling rather, how I’m feeling, I realize that I
need more recuperation time. So I asked my doctor if I could wait to start
until after the retreat, this way I know I can attend the retreat as my best
self, and I get to re-up a little more before the 4th round. She
said something I felt was funny, if not mildly insensitive, “Objectively, your
body is ready for the next round (i.e. blood counts up, etc.), but I can
understand that subjectively, your body
feels tired.” Um… yes, does that make it less true?
I’m not that bristled by the comment; I
mean, it’s technically true, et al, but it doesn’t make my body feel any more
“get up and go” just because objectively it has all the red and white cells it
So, I will wait. Recuperate. Rest, if I let myself.
It felt like a good decision for me, to choose to take care
of myself, rather than play by an agenda that doesn’t work for me, and on that
note, I will update you on the “dad situation,” since I know several of you
have asked me about it.
Well, after I emailed my dad last week to ask him to be in
more touch, and getting a marginally increased amount of contact, with no more depth
to it than ever, I decided I can’t do this. These conversations may be longer
now, but of no more substance; they’re not really conversations at all, but more like monologues at each other. Nothing has really changed. And every time he
calls, my chest constricts, and I am either exasperated at the timing of the
call, or hesitant to pick up because I don’t really like the man
much. And so, I wrote him an email yesterday after talking with a woman I
trust, and let him know that although I’d just asked for more contact with him, I’d actually like to ask for a
break from contact. That I’m “going through some things” (HA!), and will keep
him updated as to my treatments.
Yesterday, I also ended a relationship with a woman I’d been meeting with
weekly to help guide her through some of the same “self-help” work I’ve done.
I’ve been wanting to end this relationship for a while, as it EXHAUSTS me, but I also felt that, “we’re in the middle of
the work, how can I let her go now, can’t I just get to the end of
this little bit 
with her?…”
No. Finally, no.
So, yesterday was a big day for me. I asked to have no
contact with my dad for a while, and I told a woman that I can’t work with her
anymore (because of the cancer… she
says, not altogether truthfully – but kindly). “Trimming the fat,” is what I
called it to my friend. Trimming the fat of relationships that don’t work for me.
Another friend asked me today how I felt in the wake of these
moves, and I said… I don’t really know. I feel a little at sea, honestly, which
I think is a good thing – to let what will form in the absence of negativity
form. I don’t really know how I feel,
except perhaps relieved. I think it’ll take a few days to let it settle in that
I’m taking time for myself, that I’m putting my needs first, and allowing for
them to be met by people who are actually able to meet them.
It’s the end of the year, the time when we settle up the last
twelve months; I’m glad I don’t have to go into the new one carrying the burden
of relationships that don’t work for me. 
Merry Christmas Eve, everyone. 

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