Monday, May 30, 2011

Radiation, running, cream

Radiation... I am now going into my third week of radiation. Only five more treatments to go. I have already been through 10 and I must admit that this experience has been much more pleasant that chemo. After a few doctor's appointments to set me up with a mold of my upper body (I got to feel like Han Solo when they were making this thing) and to line me up underneath the laser, I was ready to go. My routine is that I go in, scan my card, go to the dressing room, get dressed in a gown, the nurses come and get me, put me in my mold (I really do not know how a claustrophobic person would be able to handle that one), and zap me! I am in and out within 10 minutes usually. That is way better than six hours of chemotherapy.
Radiation does make you think though. It was such a surreal experience the first time I went in. You do not feel a things, however, all I could think was, "How in the world did I get here?" I would have never guessed that I would be doing this at the age of twenty-two during my last summer at home. Yet, here I am laying underneath a laser. Thank you, God, for medical technology and please let this take it all away.
Running... I am back to running and working out now. It is a slow process of getting back into shape but I am thoroughly enjoying it. Running makes me feel like I am doing something, that I am fighting something. It is hard to feel like you are fighting a disease when you are horizontal on the couch all of the time. Running is active. It is a struggle. And it makes you feel like you are battling. Exercise is also one of the only things that seems to ward off some of the fatigue that comes with radiation.
Ice cream... Radiation is a cake walk until it comes to the radiation sore throat. Because of where I am receiving radiation (on my neck) it makes my throat feel very sore. The only way I know how to describe it is like swallowing two ping pong balls but they are stuck in the upper part of your throat. It hurts really bad to swallow, so I have been doing soft foods like Jello, pudding, protein shakes, and lots and lots of ice cream. Thankfully, Janie, my sister, works at an ice cream parlor and brings me home ice cream all the time. The throat thing really stinks, but I may never have the opportunity to eat ice cream like this again. Just take joy in the small things!

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