Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Breaking Up Is Hard to Do

Weirdly, I think I am going to miss my chemotherapy treatments. I had my last one today, and it was so pleasant that I had a hard time excavating myself from the comfortable chair with the warm blankets and soft pillows. The snack service beats what I get at home, that's for sure. And the uninterrupted 2 1/2 hours of reading, sleeping, cross-wording, and thinking are not to be sneezed at. Today I actually did take a nap, probably due to the fact that I was up very late last night because of the steroids I am taking. Anyway, I dozed off about midway through my treatment, only to wake myself by my own snoring. VERY SMOOTH.

I did get to spend some time today quizzing my oncologist. Before today, because I have sailed through this process so easily, I have seen very little of him. I warned him last month that I had numerous questions, so he allotted plenty of time for me today. I am interested, of course, in what kind of changes in diet and behavior I should make, and when these will be compatible with the medical protocols. With chemo behind me, I can begin the shift from an animal protein based diet toward one more vegetable based. Everything I have read indicates that this is the kind of diet that one should adopt as a cancer preventative. Additionally, I am "hot" to boost my antioxidant intake, but I cannot start that until after radiation, because the jury is still out on whether antioxidants might interfere with the efficacy of radiation. I told the good doctor about papaya leaf tea, which had been suggested to me by my friend Jane Dodds, and which has excellent data supporting its role in eating away the fibrin on cancer cells to make them more vulnerable to death (insert mental image of tiny but powerful papaya leaf conking big ugly cancer cell on the head) and at first he rolled his eyes; but then I told him that there was a supporting article about this enzyme therapy published in one of the "sanctioned" medical magazines in his own office waiting room. So, that one is good to go. That's just a smattering of what we covered, but you get the gist. I want to take back some control.

So, I will miss the old place. But I am told that there are other fine experiences waiting for me in the holding room for radiation treatment. I have heard about the bonding that occurs with the group that gathers EVERY DAY FOR 6 WEEKS, sitting together waiting to be zapped/nuked/burned/crisped. Adversity builds character and community; I can use the character-building and I expect to enjoy the new community.