This blog entry is from the summer when I was hospitalized for a week because my blood sugar was dangerously high. The image is by Brendan Smyth edited by me.


I felt no physical pain

There are big blocks of time I don’t remember. Days in the hospital blended together like feral cats on a sunny day. My biggest fear came true. For a time cancer changed who I was and how I thought. I was drifting in and out of lucidity. I was obsessed with the number four, cast iron shirts and telling my doctors that they were “very clever”.

I was blissfully happy.

The whole brain radiation was easy. Five minutes every day I lay on a table under a mesh mask. The mask secured my head to the table to prevent movement. Over time the mask became a safe place. It made me feel like something was happening. Like I had control over my future. Maybe this treatment would be so effective that I could live another four years.

But there is no control when you have cancer.

I was engulfed in a domino of side effects. Headaches from three new brain metastasis lead to radiation. The increase of steroids drove my blood sugars dangerously high. I can’t focus on anything but the number four. Random words spill out of my mouth. The blank stares from people around me as I try to explain myself. Despite this I was gleefully happy. My mind absorbed by steroid side effects and the number four.

Lucidity is wrapped in fear.

Fear engulfed me as I started to become aware of myself. The spaces between lucidity and the number four widened. I slowly took back my brain. The doctor came to do testing. She handed me a needle and thread and asks me to copy her. I struggled which made me afraid. Will it always be like this? Is this living? Blocks of time I don’t remember. My obsession with the number four. Not being able to problem solve or take care of myself.


4 replies »

  1. This is so well written. Your honestly always touches my heart – and although our stories are different – makes me feel less alone in the world.

  2. ❤ As I have more and more brain metastases show up my biggest fear is losing myself more and more. I know I don't know what will happen next. I love and appreciate your honesty Anna.

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