It’s been a hectic few weeks, hard to write. I don’t have a clear vision for what I want to share today. I’ll give an update since people seem to like that and then see what flows out of my fingers…. Always so much on my mind, so many things happening. Quite a few good days, some grumpy days. Just muddling through.
I switched to Scripps Hospital for chemo which I really like. I learned that I don’t have the scary reaction to taxol (anaphylaxis) but like 15% of patients, I have non-life threatening reactions. It’s like the difference between a deathly allergy to peanuts versus a rash from eating dairy. They still give it to me over a longer period to decrease the reaction – but I’m safe – won’t die from it which is always a plus. I’m lucky I can tolerate it because taxol is the best drug to beat ovarian cancer. Those pesky cells can escape the pelvic area and become impossible to track versus colon cancer which you can check through biopsies. Blerg.
Most of the time, I try not to think about what this means. I had a lovely conversation with a friend who told me that my experience gave her the motivation to end a relationship that was no longer healthy. She realized how life short is. If nothing else, I hope that this does remind people how life short is and to not wait until “one day” to follow a dream or make a change. For the most part, my attitude is: of course, I will beat this thing and live a long life! But then I think about how f#&@ed my immune system must be to get a chronic disease as a teenager and four cancers in three years. I sometimes walk down that road in my head – what if it comes back in a few years? What if they told me to get my affairs in order? The same thing that ran through my head during the three months I had melanoma surgeries and they kept finding more. These thoughts during the melanoma are what motivated me to move back to the west coast, choose a more relaxed lifestyle, and live closer to family.
I can’t help but wonder: What would I do if they gave me a short time to live this time around? I try not to get morbid but instead use it as an opportunity to chisel away at the unnecessary crap in my life. What would I prioritize if I had only a short time left? What legacy would I want to leave behind? What work would I finish? What would I discard? How would I spend my free time? What would I say to the kids in my life? Where would I travel to? I haven’t answered these questions but they make me think about what I really, really want in my life.
For the most part, I do believe I can kick this thing. My dad’s mom lived until 88 and she had 10 cancer operations due to the Lynch gene. She died of dementia related symptoms! I have access to such incredible information and so much support from the alternative medicine community. I’m very interested in nutrition and genetics which I’ll share more about later. I think that the reason this is happening is because that’s the next path I’m supposed to be on. Helping patients in our health care system and finding ways to give them access to much needed information makes me excited to get back to work. The rest is fuzzy but I’m certain this experience will inform my next career chapter. And I’m pretty sure it’s going to be a LONG chapter, right? I have a lot of work to do! And kids to watch grow up. Stupid Lynch. Going to kick it’s ass. I can do this.