Tag Archives: cancer

That’s Messed Up

There is a blog I follow that is exerts from a book written by a guy who had cancer. Each post is from a different chapter in the book and includes pictures from that time. It starts with his diagnosis and as of the newest chapter I just finished reading he is in round 2 of chemo and basically living in hell.

Along with the text he includes pictures from the time he is writing about. So the post I just read is written about Christmas eve and day and has a picture of him by the Christmas tree. He is gaunt, he has lost a third of his body weight by this time, he is a skeleton (his description). It can be hard to tell what his body looks like because he is always wearing 4 layers of clothes due to always being cold but you can see the changes in his face,

This most recent picture, I guess because of the lighting, he still looks super thin, underweight, an all that, but the dark circles under his eyes aren’t as apparent and he doesn’t look sick, just really thin.

And I realized, as I stared at that picture, that I was a bit jealous that he was that thin.

I also wondered if he, as someone who is now healthy, ever looks back at these pictures and longs for the days he was that thin.

That my friends is some messed up thinking.

I highly doubt he looks at those pictures and sees anything beyond how sick he was, how sick he looked, they probably bring back to him how crappy he felt, the hell he was living through, things like that.

But do I think that?

Nope. Not me. Not messed up me. I think how sad I would be if I was him, looking at those pictures, missing how skinny he was.

I have some pictures like that, where they really show how skinny I was, and I love and hate those pictures. I love them because they show me being skinny, they show that I was once able to get skinny and give me hope I can get there again. I hate those pictures because they taunt me, they make me scared I’ll never be that skinny again, they make me mad that I was skinny and screwed it up and got fat. It is so hard to get back there, and those pictures remind me of how far away from that I am.

Me looking at pictures from when I was skinny and longing to look like that again, to me that isn’t messed up.

Me looking at pictures of a man sick with cancer who is in the midst of chemo treatments and wondering if he misses being that skinny because I am jealous of how underweight he was, that is crazy messed up.

 

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F*ck Cancer

Fuck cancer.

I have a friend who one day was fine and the next day he was a little bit sick. He went to the doctor and in the blink of an eye he was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Fuck.

Not that any one terminal cancer is better than the other but his is particularly aggressive, and painful, and it took him from being a vibrant, active, loving life person, to someone who is in so much pain he is permanently dopey from all the morphine being pumped in to his body. He can barely talk, hell, he is almost never awake. He can’t tell who is around him. He is not himself anymore.

The cancer has taken him from us before it has killed him.

I want to fight, I want to scream, I want to hit things, I want to do something, anything, that shows my grief, and fear, and rage, to the world. As if the world seeing how upset I am would make a difference to what he is going through.

I want it to be over for him because this is not how he wants to go. Not how he deserves to go. He deserves a peaceful, dignified death. What he is getting is painful, and bloody, and brutal, and is tormenting not only himself but those who love him. He lost his wife years ago and every day since then misses her. He still loves her with everything he has, he still talks about her as being the love of his life, he still talks about how much he misses her…or he did before the pain and the morphine took away his ability to talk. He wants to be with her again and even though I am not religious I wish for him, with all my being, that there is something after death, that he will get not just escape from the pain when he dies but the warm comforting love of his wife. I want her to be waiting for him. I want him to find a happy eternity. He deserves that.

He doesn’t deserve the horrible way his eternity is coming to him.

I knew he was sick but today I found out just how sick and I am having trouble coping. I had to stop at the store on the way home and before I knew it I was wandering the bakery aisles because hey, nothing makes grief go away better than diving in to a cake all on your own, right?

I ended up skipping the cakes, and the donuts, and the cheesecakes, and all kinds of things. I knew I wanted something but I wasn’t exactly sure what and I could only afford to buy one thing so it had to be the perfectly right thing to binge on. Feeling inspired I headed to the ice cream aisle. I could envision myself sitting in my living room, in my sweats, eating all the ice cream directly from the container. I slowly wandered the ice cream aisle wondering which flavour to take when I saw chocolate ice cream bars (think fudgesicle just a different brand) that I have had before. They are a “healthy option” ice cream bar type treat that I used last summer as a way to have ice cream without screwing up my food intake for the day.

I was so torn. I really wanted cake but I knew that not only would that screw up my weigh-in this week it would leave me feeling guilty, sick, overly full, depressed, worse about myself…all kinds of negative things, aaaaaaaand…it wouldn’t make my friend better. It wouldn’t make this situation with him better, or easier to manage, or somehow more bearable. It wouldn’t make my grief easier to cope with. It wouldn’t make the pain in my heart easier to deal with. It wouldn’t make the feeling that his death will be the one to break me, do irreparable damage to my psyche, go away. If anything, having a binge would make all those feelings even stronger because they would be backed by shame, and guilt, and all kinds of other binge related emotions.

This whole situation sucks.

In the end I bought the “healthier option” ice cream bars.

On the way home I thought I might go for a run but by the time I got home I was exhausted and didn’t want to. I didn’t even want the ice cream bars, shrug. I showered, ate a half cup of oatmeal (it is a safe food and I knew I was way below my food intake for the day so figured I should have something) and well, then I ended up eating part of a chocolate bar that I had in the fridge. I thought I would eat the whole thing but nope, just some of it. It is now back in the fridge. My appetite is gone…not that it is often there…but all I am right now is a ball of sadness.

It makes me tired, and not wanting to do anything, and I vaguely wonder if this will be the beginning of an extreme restricting cycle because my body is so busy being sad it can’t do anything else…

My coping skills for strong emotions are to dive deeper in to my eating disorder behaviours but that isn’t the best choice for me so I am kind of trying to not engage in them but I don’t have any other coping skills to help me with this so I am left floundering, not knowing what to do.

Fuck you cancer. You suck.

grief