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Jay Lake
Date: 2012-11-13 05:41
Subject: [cancer] Return of the Fear
Security: Public
Tags:cancer, health
It's been a while since I've had to wrestle hard with the Fear. But this new CEA spike is really upsetting me. I was off work yesterday for chemo recovery, and essentially spent the day in a funk of depression, anxiety and, well, the Fear.

The cancer has been going on for four and half years. As it has moved forward, it has slowly accelerated. My initial diagnosis was in April of 2008, single focus in a single site (ie, a lone tumor). I had surgery without chemo, and was told it was Stage I, go home and live my life. A year later, in May of 2009 we found the first metastasis in my lung, though it took some months to come to terms with that. That was a slow-growing, single focus, single site tumor as well. That retroactively pushed me into Stage IV from the beginning. After a false alarm in 2010, the the third round came April of 2011. Still single site, single focus. That was almost a year and half after coming off the first round of chemo.

This time I got eight months after the second round of chemotherapy. And multifocal tumors, one impinging on a second site. Now, two months into my third round of chemo, there is sufficient evidence to be materially concerned that either this chemo isn't effective, or a new metastasis has presented itself.

You don't have to be a mathematician to draw this trend line.

I'd been hoping for four more years of life, and figuring on at least two. If we have to stop the current treatment and move on, that shaves about a year off what's coming, simply because the numbers were based on the assumption that each treatment sequence buys me about a year. Stopping this current current treatment is a double whammy, because I lose one of those years off the front, and I am probably dealing with something even harder to treat, which loses me more time off the back.

So, here I am in an information vacuum until next week's CT scan, doing what I always do in an information vacuum. Falling prey to my worst impulses. And feeling the Fear scrabbling at me like fingernails on the chalkboard of my life. Trying so hard not to infect everyone around me with it.

I hate this.

Post A Comment | 18 Comments | | Link

shelly_rae: Blue Hippo=Strong
User: shelly_rae
Date: 2012-11-13 14:09 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Blue Hippo=Strong
All the "hurry up and wait," and the complete lack of control and just plain fear is maddening. Humor helps, friends help, family helps, but ultimately it's just us.
There's a heart breaking, cathartic song I love from a local band, Star Anna and the Laughing Dogs. we're all, alone in this together

It's freaking hard and at times we all break. But choosing to live the best life we can, choosing the living over the fear, is really all we can do. Live today, carpe Diem, dude.</p>

I'll send you a postcard from Abu Semel.

Be well.

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User: fjm
Date: 2012-11-13 14:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Feeling angry for you. Sending you virtual hugs. Will try for real ones soon.
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User: threeoutside
Date: 2012-11-13 14:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Fuck cancer. Fuck it to hell. I hate this too, Jay.

Wish I could do more than virtual *hugs*.
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User: seventorches
Date: 2012-11-13 14:47 (UTC)
Subject: I hate it too.
And I didn't weigh in on the anger thread but I will go ahead and say it here---I'm all in favor of anger too.
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User: keikaimalu
Date: 2012-11-13 14:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hey, maybe it's time to get religion?


Really sorry you're dealing with all this, Jay. And I'm sure anyone in your shoes would be grappling with the Fear the same way.

I swear, even when you're dealing with dire shit, the unknown is somehow more stressful than just about anything else.

Here's to the most peaceful possible passing of time between now and when the unknown becomes known.
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scarlettina: Hug 2
User: scarlettina
Date: 2012-11-13 15:13 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Hug 2
We're all hating it with you, believe me. ::hug::
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chessdev: alien
User: chessdev
Date: 2012-11-13 15:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
All I can say is we're hoping and praying for you in this...

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Richard Parks: pic#98248748
User: ogre_san
Date: 2012-11-13 15:20 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hate is a perfectly appropriate response under the circumstances. The situation sucks.
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User: mcjulie
Date: 2012-11-13 15:48 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
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Kari Sperring
User: la_marquise_de_
Date: 2012-11-13 16:59 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Fuck cancer.
kari xx
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User: mlerules
Date: 2012-11-13 16:59 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)

See you at same bat-time 'n' same bat-place o'morrow morning?
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User: cathshaffer
Date: 2012-11-13 17:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Very understandable. I hope you can find some distractions, but I imagine this will not get better until you have some answers from the CT. *hugs*
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W. Lotus
User: wlotus
Date: 2012-11-13 17:25 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I hate this for you. Not in the way you are living with and hating it, of course, but just...gah...I hate it when people's lives are upended through no fault of their own.

Be as well as you can be.
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User: kellymccullough
Date: 2012-11-13 17:36 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Hate is a reasonable response. So is rage. And fear. Fuck cancer!
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User: beth_bernobich
Date: 2012-11-13 19:03 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:petal twigs
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User: quaero_verum
Date: 2012-11-13 20:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My soul aches for you, Jay.

I don't even know you but you have been so transparent about this whole process I feel like you're almost family.

I can't express how sorry I am about all this fear and pain and....."fuck-up-ed-ness"...for lack of another appropriate term.

My problems pale to nothing in comparison to yours. I admire your willingness to share, because if nothing else, it puts my own life in perspective.

I wish I could do or say or think of something that would make a real difference for you, but I guess we will have to settle on the fact that you are in my thoughts and prayers every single day.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Jay Lake: cancer-hereafter_is_closed
User: jaylake
Date: 2012-11-13 23:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My next oncology appointment isn't until a week from tomorrow. My oncologist wanted data close to then.
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Leah Cutter: Stress lab 2
User: lrcutter
Date: 2012-11-14 06:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Stress lab 2
There are reasons why people feared limbo more than hell, the not knowing is awful. I wish you the best possible results at this time. Know that you are in my thoughts.
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