Tuesday, October 21, 2008
My Dog Cancer
The day to day living with cancer is an interesting thing. While I was in chemo and “rocking the bald” I could not really hide from it. It looked me in the mirror everyday, and people asked me dumb- ass and/ or curious questions about it all the time. I had no choice but to pay attention to the physical reality and side effects of chemo.
Now, I have hair and I do not have the shiny skinned, bug eyed and bloated look that chemo so graciously creates. So for the general public I am, to quote Tim “the old lady with funny boobs” or for the most part a “normal”. Even though being bald and bloated and sick was awful it gave me a look that allowed me to be the cancer victim. Now, people still say things to me that seem odd, but they are different from the chemo/ cancer comments and questions. The other day at a restaurant it went like this “I like your hair”
I said “oh, this hair-do happened by accident” (what the hell else could I say to this stranger in a Vermont restaurant “restroom”on a Wednesday morning?) She said “I have had lots of haircuts I got….blah blah blah.” By this point I had tuned out wondering whether to bring cancer into the conversation…
I left the bathroom feeling kind of dejected. I am not special anymore. I am just the same as everyone else. Strange I know, because being “normal” is all I ever wanted during treatment. But now I know. I know that I will never be ‘normal’ again; I will never not have cancer looming over my head. I may get cancer again. I may never have gotten rid of it. I have a better chance of having more cancer than anyone who has no had it before. At this stage I am not sure if I will ever forget that. Not many minutes go by without thinking about cancer, talking about cancer or doing something about ….. cancer.
While you may think I sound like I am depressed by this you are incorrect. Getting cancer for me was not depressing, it was annoying and hard and scary and stuff but not depressing. I got through the treatment with a kick ass attitude and nothing will change that. But now cancer just won’t ever go away….Won’t go away like having a dog on a permanent leash attached to you won’t go away. Some days dragging this stupid barking mutt around is harder than other days. Some days, it is like having a little puppy- a lighter but still yappy and annoying.
Last weekend in Vermont it was a puppy. Today it is a big, but kind of quiet dog.
I just hope sometime soon I can drop the damned thing off at the pound.