It has been ~30 days since my last radiation treatment and 12 days since my last chemo treatment and my body is starting to do it’s thing — heal. Playing off the analogy from the last two posts…the burrito has been out of the microwave and on the counter for a few minutes and has cooled off enough to eat.
The mouth sores have all healed and I only have two small spots right now giving me grief. While my throat is still sore but I am able to swallow again. The secretions and thick mucus has dramatically decreased which helps me talk more clearly and not have to constantly slip out of sight to hawk loogies. I can feel my energy levels slowly picking back up and I’m sleeping pretty well.
So basically I feel like a total boss right now.
While it feels good to “feel good”, it feels better to be progressing. The last round of chemo was really tough. My mouth was a wreck but I was noticing signs of progress. It was like I fighting for every inch of progress and I had gained five feet of ground. And then the wave of chemo hit me and drove me back fifty feet. It was discouraging but now we gritted through it and now I feel like we are winning ground again, rather than having it slip away from us.
I know there is a difference between feeling better and getting better in my case. I still have cancer. I still have treatment to go through. I still have a long journey ahead that we hope ends with the word remission. But a few weeks of feeling better certainly strengthens the resolve to keep fighting to get better.
The most outward signal of my progress is that I’m swallowing again and able to eat some foods. For the past three days I’ve been able to eat soups, eggs, soft cheese, hot dogs, and drink liquids. Me and Maruchan are becoming well acquainted. How many ways can you prepare ramen?
The food progress is exciting but I’m trying not to get ahead of myself. I’m trying to eat about 1000 calories a day and then do about 1000 calories through the feeding tube during the night. I can’t really taste much but between the aromas and just pretending I can, food is starting to become that happy part of my life it used to be. I’m going to enjoy gaining every single one of those 30 pounds back.
While my body is healing, my soul continues to be strengthened by so many people and in so many ways. There were several profound discussions and discourses today at my Church. It really is a place of healing. One of the discussions that was personally impactful was regarding prayer and had me feeling overwhelmed with gratitude for the never-ceasing prayers that are being offered on my behalf and on my family’s behalf.
Several times a week I bump into someone or have someone reach out to say something along the lines of, “We still pray for you daily. We aren’t stopping.” All of the little kids in the neighborhood know me by name and come up to me to ask how I’m doing after telling me that they are still praying for me. If I’ve got the faith of these amazing 4 year old’s in my corner, I can keep fighting this monster indefinitely. The power of prayer has been constant and real. Not sure how to adequately articulate how it has felt, but you know it for yourself so it can go unwritten.
It will be a quiet upcoming 2-3 weeks. I’ve got a few normal check-ins with doctors and then the PET / CT Scan the second week of May.