All I Do is Sleep, Sleep, Sleep No Matter What
Up until recently, I haven't missed much of a beat when it comes to this whole cancer thing. I have been working, meeting with clients and also going on much needed date nights and dinners with friends. Cancer, what? Chemo, really? Well that was until this past weekend.
Let me take a step back...
As many of you who follow my @c.d.r.e.a.m Instagram know, I was due to have my second round of chemo on June 26. As usual, we prepped for the day, and headed over to MSK for our usual routine. When we got there, they checked my blood counts to ensure that my red and white blood cells were in check, pretty standard. I then headed up to see my Oncologist.
Imagine my surprise when the Nurse Practitioner came in to tell us in a very nonchalant manner that I would not be having treatment due to my white blood cell count being too low. As much as I was not looking forward to chemo, this just prolongs the process and my schedule that much more! It is however, very common and no real cause for concern.
Hold up. what do white blood cells have to do with it?
Chemo's job is really to kill off any bad cells that could turn into a problem. That said, chemo also doesn't discriminate, and also kills the good guys as well. White blood cells are integral in fighting infection, so when your counts are low, it is too dangerous to get treatment. Your body won't be able to fight infections off if there are not enough white blood cells to come to the rescue.
I was supposed to go to the U2 concert with my Mom who was coming into town that weekend. Well, given my low counts, I was advised to "stay away" from germs. I live in New York. Germs are kind of the thing here. It was then I realized that while I have kept my life pretty normal thus far, there were going to be hiccups sometimes. And off my Dad went with my U2 ticket. Womp.
Back to the lecture at hand...
Last Thursday, Stevo and I headed back to MSK hoping that my counts would be built back up, so that I could continue my treatment. Turns out, all was ok and I was back in action!
After all of the usual rigamarole that comes with chemo, I was back home and on the couch preparing to take the rest of the day to rest. If I can give any of you going through this one piece of advice it is to take the day and day after off to rest. Your body is just craving rest. So much rest. Did I say rest?
Friday I felt fine. I actually did a few things around the house and even went to acupuncture. I was starting to get cocky again. Looks like I was not going to be one of those people that chemo brought down.
Ha, that will be a hilarious memory. One I will always cherish.
Saturday rolled around and I felt like I had gone out drinking until 4am the night before. My body was heavy. My head hurt. I couldn't keep my eyes open. It was almost as if Chemo was trying to put my in my place -- like, listen bitch, you need to check yourself.
I had breakfast plans with some out of town family, and then to go to Central Park with their kiddos. An otherwise mellow activity. I was on the struggle bus.
It was a gorgeous weekend in NYC. Patios and rooftops bumping. Rosè flowing. People legit not giving a f**k. All I could think about was going home to sleep. I had all of the symptoms of a hangover, but none of the fun memories from the night before. I wanted a Gatorade. I wanted to feel normal again. When will that happen exactly?
I guess the moral of the story here is that it isn't a sign of weakness to be taken down a bit by your cancer journey. While it is important to keep your mind and body active, you also need to be mindful when your body is telling you to slow your roll. And that's ok. Just because you are feeling the side effects and are maybe not up for a night out, doesn't mean you are not handling it. You are. You will. I have gotten so much better at listening to my body, and doing what it asks. I think we are homies again.