What happened to Monty? She’s been quiet. Seriously, what’s up with her?
I’m sorry y’all, I didn’t mean to go all radio silence. It is amazing that when you feel poorly, one hour can slip into the next and into the next and then you are watching the Try Guys YouTube channel and clicking on “Songs That Get White People Turnt’ and laughing for a minute and then dozing off because your meds finally kicked in. Then you wake up and have to figure out how to take out the trash because you aren’t strong enough to lift the dumpster steel lid and after that dilemma, you are exhausted and have to feed yourself which isn’t as easy as it used to be. You then sit down with the latest FULL script of Flesheaters (Thank you Josh!) and continue writing and making notes, but you are interrupted by the alarm that signals you have to do some exercises that leave you in tears, so it’s more medication and it begins again.
And I hate to tell you all that. I don’t want to be a downer. I don’t want that every time we speak, I sound all negative. I thought I would have pulled it out by now. I’ve done some desperately difficult things in my life. This might just be the hardest. It literally feels like my body is betraying me.
After the last time I wrote, I received a very casual text message via my doctor’s health portal. (This message was in response to the emergency MRI I took because I had that knot in my neck on the right front side.)
“Dr. Kokot reviewed scan and said that this is just the salivary gland and the tongue looks good.”
And that’s when I cried.
Tears of relief.
Tears of joy.
The week prior to taking that MRI I was so unbelievably tense and wound up, like a Jack-in-the-Box ready to spring, that only by receiving that message did I finally feel like my coils had been cut and I relaxed in a puddle. Just a sad, little bony puddle of Monty.
Then…it began again…my body has begun to slowly wind back up and get pushed inside the box. I have a PET scan on August 23rd. (For those of you who don’t know, a PET scan is the big scan. The BIG scan that says whether or not there is any evidence of disease in my body. The test is a bit of a beast. I don’t remember getting panicky like I did in the MRI…I don’t think the cylinder they slide me in is that long, but I do have to remain ABSOLUTELY still. Tongue too. No swallowing or coughing or any other of the million tics I have picked up since this cancer started its plague. They even tie me up to a certain extreme to ensure I won’t shift around. And the test takes about 45 minutes.) Oh, I also have to have a slew of CT scans as well.
So I’m pretty terrified.
I hear that’s pretty normal. Most people are terrified of the PET. It’s like finding out the results of some great sports match and we get to see who is winning and who is dying.
I mean, we all die. And some of us, a good amount will die because our body betrays us. And when we die because of a health ailment, we are often given an expiration date and then when we have the date that is all you can think of. Getting everything done in that time. Before the expiration date, nothing but possibility. The promise of potential.
Then this inevitably leads me to the people I’ve loved and known who have died young. All the potential gone…but mostly the hugs I didn’t get to have, the laughs I didn’t get to share and the loss, the bone crushing loss I experience since I don’t have these people here, everyday.
Then I begin to worry I’m not making enough of the time I have right now. I mean, at the moment, I’m alive and kicking. I just feel like crap. Crappy crap crap poopshippity poop. (No poo y’all, I feel poorly.) And crappy feeling gets in the way of being productive, I tell ya. My tongue swells up like 15 times a day, which makes everything (talking, eating, sleeping, BREATHING) very difficult. My arm hurts worse than ever before now that I have some of it missing for my tongue—which I’m very happy it worked, I’m just saying, “Yoahha, that hurts.” My neck is swollen and because of all the swelling, I have to sleep almost propped straight up and that has created the most painful neck spasm/crick/pulled muscle ever. So let’s add that to the list of injuries.
See…NEGATIVE. (Small script: I don’t like it. Monty doesn’t like it at all.)
It’s just when they say radiation ain’t no joke, they weren’t kidding. I mean, after the surgery I recovered pretty well within two months, but the radiation has added challenges plus plus. And it’s funny, but I still feel like I’m getting radiation treatment, though I finished about two months ago. It’s the gift that keeps giving.
And you know what, I’M FINE WITH IT! If it is KILLING MY CANCER DEAD, I’M TOTALLY FINE!!!
That was a little positive. Because I’m fine with this…all of this, if it is working. Because I have to get back to working and I can’t even take out the trash right now. I just want to get back to being Monty.