limbo before scan.

i am waiting at the moment.  i have a scan on monday which, to a major degree, decides aspects of my fate.  it will tell my doctors if the chemotherapy regime i’ve been on has ‘arrested growth’ or not.  hopefully it has, as i suspect due to the fact i can no longer feel two of the tumours that were in my abdomen, sticking out below my ribcage, and that my ribcage has shrunk.  but the hard evidence is in that CT scan.  and i am terrified.  i am trying to use advice a wise woman gave me on a facebook thread: stay in each day. it is … days until my scan. i will worry about it on that day.  it is … days until the result. i will worry about that when i get it from my oncologist.  but it’s hard.  i feel very vulnerable at the moment – my body is being assaulted by chemicals, and i have a really rotten hanging around cold.  it is viral, so it’s ok, but it’s exhausting and upsetting and i am sick of it.  it’s making me more emotional than i would be, and even my epic power-playlist doesn’t always cheer me up.

night time is the worst.  the gap between taking my seroquel and sleep is growing as my body gets used to the seroquel dose i am on. i’m reluctant to adjust it without a more significant mood change, just for sleep – i should try other techniques. but it’s the lying there, in the dark, with no white noise, that scares me.  i love the white noise. i spend a lot of time online, because of the white noise. the constant stream of twitter and facebook make me feel safer than i can say. i can see people – through the other side of a keyboard – that i would not normally see.  i feel connected. i can talk to them, and i feel so much less alone. this is isolating.  i tend to talk the most on twitter at night, late, when almost everyone is asleep. it’s talking in an empty room, but it feels safe, and almost always, at least someone is there to witness whatever it is that i am terrified or saddened by.

i am struggling with the silence in general. not working means long, long days alone, by myself, staring at the screen of my computer. i often don’t even drag myself off to do something productive and enjoyable like craft – i just stare, and try and forget, and try and not have my regular freak outs.  i often fail at not having the regular freak outs. i had an epic one today over BREAKING MY WEAVING. alex fixed it in ten minutes.

after i get the scan results i’ll be better. it’s always the waiting that drives me insane.

in good news, one of the people – from work- who has been one of my Rocks through all this, got me a book on sock knitting that, unbeknownst to her, i’d actually been wanting to buy for years.  so i am filled with sock happiness, and now have no reason NOT to knit alex the purple socks i got the yarn for before xmas….




About elizabeth

various things.
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14 Responses to limbo before scan.

  1. Dani says:

    My best friends at those lying-awake-in-the-middle-of-the-night-times-and-I-can’t-switch-my-brain-off are Radio National and my pillow speaker. If i listen to music or silence or white noise my brain is free to ignore all of that and drift back to the thing I can’t let go. If I listen to Books and Arts Daily at 2 in the morning I can pay attention to what Michael Cathcart is saying instead of whatever stupid shit my brain is fixated on, and eventually get back to sleep. Or at least not be bored and/or driven insane by my own circular thoughts. Although you would not believe how often RN repeats program. Sometimes I find myself inexplicably tuning into the first half of a program at 2 in the morning that I caught the end of at 10am the previous day. Weird. Enjoy the sock happiness!

    • veritas says:

      RN solves all our issues in life! that’s actually a really good idea. i think i need some headphones and some way of getting radio on my phone. (it is terrible, but i don’t actually own a radio).

  2. Bronwyn says:

    ABC radio app for smart phones or tablets – it also a sleep fuction so you can set it to turn off after while. Take care & I’m sending you sone virtual **hugs**

  3. strawberriesofintegrity says:

    Get cracking on those socks!! I also recommend RN and podcasts. I am almost at the stage where I wake up in the night, just so that I can get a podcast in….bit sad I know.
    I think the ‘be present in each day’ is great thinking…
    Away now until beginning of Dec but plan on inflicting myself on you for a visit before Christmas (Jees I am only down the road….)
    Will be thinking of you
    Do whatever it takes.
    Bigs hugs. Love kate xx

    • veritas says:

      hopefully i’ll be back in canberra then – not sure when my surgery will be, or how long i will be in sydney after it, in recovery….

      be present in every day is what i try. it’s hard at the moment because time just lags on and on.

  4. strawberriesofintegrity says:

    Meant to also say – if ever there was a job just listening all day to RN – it’s mine!!!
    Or being one of those posh announcers on classic FM, lol xx

  5. Nine says:

    I always try to remember to just stay in each day, but it can be hard. Hooray for the internet, definitely. Thinking of you & hoping you get good news on Monday. x

    • veritas says:

      the internet! i really really don’t know where i would be without it at the moment…. it keeps me as sane as is possible. thanks so much – i’ll not know until thursday, but i’m hoping that there’s optimistic looks on the CT scanning people’s faces. they are always deadpan, unless you are totally clear from experience, so it’s unlikely. though, one scan dude told me to go home and drink wine. that was after seeing my liver was filled with tumours. i guess he thought there was no point worrying, it was already fucked.

  6. Em says:

    It’s always taken me hours to go to sleep: as a young kid, I would stay up long after my parents were asleep, reading my mum’s wholly inappropriate detective/crime/police procedural novels under the covers with a torch. In adulthood, that’s translated to listening to audio-books every night until I fall asleep. For me, radio and podcasts can be a bit too distracting – different voices, random loud noises (like laughter, or ads) – or I can get too focused on the programs and end up keeping myself awake. But I’ve found audiobooks work well: the trick for me is to find single-narrator books (no dramatisations with full cast for me!) , and a narrator with a steady, subtle style (no ridiculous accents, please!). I usually like non-fiction, but right now I am working through 63-hours of JG Ballard’s short stories for one credit from Audible :o)

    With very best wishes for your Monday scan, xx

    • veritas says:

      audiobooks are another great idea! i used to have trouble falling asleep as a kid – but my insomnia always lead to severe, severe anxiety, even as a child. my big fears then included things like Having A Tetanus Shot, or Blood Tests – grew into fear of nuclear bombs and … you guessed it, cancer. they were my two biggest childhood fears. the habit remains – once it is dark and quiet, i become terrified of everything.

      JG Ballard stories sound like exactly what i need.

      thank you so much for scan well wishes. i’m scared, but it’s important to know. urgh. eep.

  7. Cordelia says:

    You can listen to CBC radio via phone app. For something a little bit different. I love listening the the vinyl cafe. I have subscribed to the podcast. You may want to listen to the Story Exchange episode. The story about the outhouse is hilarious. If you want to go juvenile, there is storynory. There are a few classic kids books there including the secret garden.

  8. Cordelia says:

    I just read the secret garden for the first time and enjoyed it, as did Anna.

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