Patience, please…

Mary Cassat, "Little Girl in Blue Armchair"

Can I have a complain?

This is what Mari and I ask each other when one of us calls the other to complain about something we know doesn’t really merit much energy. And yet…there is a need to get if off one’s chest. Know that feeling??

So yesterday I found out that chemo must be delayed ONCE AGAIN. Argh. This time, I might not have to wait a whole week, though. I’m getting bone crusher shots to stimulate my marrow today, tomorrow, and Sunday. We’ll do an early-morning blood test on Monday and hopefully be able to resume treatment that morning.

Why is it so frustrating to be put off again and again? I’ve been thinking about this since last night. Part of it is about control. When you have cancer, it’s so hard not to feel like you have zero control over your life;  what’s going to happen to you, both in the moment, and long term. But at least you have your treatment plan. You can mark the days on your calendar, plan your activities and rest days around those dates, do the shopping, the laundry and errands leading up to those dates. All the organizing makes me feel like I’m still in control of my day-to-day. When the rug gets pulled out, my sense of control is diminished. To say the least.

And then there’s the emotional energy that goes into preparing mentally for chemo day. I’m not even sure what goes into this. It kind of happens on a subconscious level. I liken it to waiting backstage for your cue. Or preparing for a job interview, or surgery, or…chemo. A big chunk of my emotional energy gets stored away as we lead up to the day; it revs on the heart-fluttery backburner of my chest and my belly. Dennis and Little J are storing, too. And then we have to wait. Where is that energy supposed to go?

Finally, there’s the fear that chemo is taking a toll on my body. I mean, of course it is. But I usually don’t have to think about that. I can kind of denyignorepretenditaway. But when the doctor who doesn’t sugarcoat anything says, “I’m sure your numbers will go up by next week,” and is really quite taken aback when they don’t, the fear creeps in. A bit. I’ll admit.

So, there. I said it. Sometimes I need to complain a little bit. As Little J says when he has to have a cry or when he has to say “butt” or “fart”, “I just had to get it out.”

Thank you for that complain. And Mari, I will be calling later and asking for another if this one doesn’t make me feel better.



Tags: ,

  1. Marina Filatov’s avatar


    I know how hard is to wait. And I know you are scared….

    Your CA125 is good. I don’t think +OR – few days it will make any differens.

    Hugs to you.


  2. Mari’s avatar

    Yes, do. I’m here.

  3. Sally Taylor’s avatar

    No judging here… sorry to hear about the delay.

  4. Adrian’s avatar

    I have recently heard the journalist, Christopher Hitchens talk about feeling like this. The feeling of powerlessness. That although you can try be proactive and involved it is still something that is “happening to you.”. The disease and most of all the treatment.

    Hang in there and thanks for sharing,


  5. Dominic and Sharon’s avatar

    You are awesome and will make it through this, with ever-increasing muscles of patience and flexibility to boot. Hang in there — we are among many who are rooting for you, with love and admiration -

  6. Helena’s avatar

    Just to say, Thinking of you, loving everything that you share, no matter what it is and especially for all that it is, sending you hugs hugs and more hugs, and some sweet spring sunshine from our end of the planet. We love you, Jennifer.


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>