It’s all consuming. It’s every few seconds. There’s the psychologist view that men think about sex every few seconds. I’m pretty certain that I think about cancer more often.
If it was curable, I suspect it would be more often still! But even with an inevitable outcome it’s right at the top of my thinking. I’m happy to talk about it and anybody feeling awkward raising the subject with me shouldn’t worry.
But what am I actually thinking? Thoughts of lying drugged up in a hospice are genuinely rare. Thoughts of I’ll show the bastard were common when I was travelling, less so now. Frustrations about hospital appointments are getting more common. My next chemo requires Friday blood test, Monday Oncobabe and Tuesday a further blood test and chemo itself. I know I’m not working for a living but that is a frustrating time consuming pattern, especially when eyes, ears and feet demand other medical attention in addition.
Noticing changes, however small, in my body and pain levels is another distraction to getting on with life. At present the pins and needles in my right leg, that have danced around since October, are disturbing me. Knackered pelvic bone is the probable cause, eaten by the cancer. The pins and needles have suddenly progressed from foot to thigh. Does that mean I have new damage? Or could the weakened bones be strengthening with the aid of chemo and zometa?
Then the irritating cough. It feels half hearted. I assume the cancer growth in the lung itself is to blame. But it might just be a normal cough. I’m not sure. I think it’s my first cough since diagnosis.
Carrying things reminds me of the cancer. Carry a plate and retain a spare hand is good. Carry a plate and a mug and I struggle for balance a little. Hauling myself out of bed in a morning. Sometimes a challenge. Getting in and out of the car. Tough going, especially now that I have better gripping shoes that get stuck under the pedals.
Parking close to the football ground is a reminder. Friday’s hour long drive to get from ground to main road at Wigan was a constant reminder that I’m affecting friends because of my cancer. I don’t like to be a nuisance. They probably don’t see me as a nuisance. But some of the time I probably am.
Somebody changes pace or direction in front of me. I can’t stop quickly myself. It’s a good job I’m not moving fast. But putting the brakes on somehow feels difficult whereas a year ago I’d have no problems adjusting to the random movements of others.
It’s there. Affecting me. Not just physically but high up in my mind. That’s unlikely to change.