Halfway through my treatment


I’m alive and I have a great and supportive family, for that I am grateful. Unfortunately, the Interferon for my melanoma plays games with my head and emotions, so when left to my own devices life can be a big black hole. Feelings, emotions, outlook, and attitude have all been tested. The physical side effects often include aching legs and shoulders. I lost 20 pounds since January. And I have definitely lost a lot of hair.

Six months to go and I’m no quitter. Halfway done, pushing through until December. I can do this. But can my family endure? No one sees you at your worst than family. And yet, their patience is keeping me from saying screw it. I want to complete the regimen. They’re along for the ride.

I think it’s a good thing that I can be pragmatic about what I am going through. It’s just that sometimes I am mean as a bear. I feel like I’m watching myself tear down all that is good. I wonder how my family can stand it. Maybe there’s enough good in me that they are willing to endure.

I cannot stand being around people who are negative and their cup is half empty. And here I am one of these people. So the cycle continues. No, not really. At least I can tell myself to snap out of it.

We have a treadmill that I don’t get on often enough, but I do get on it and I do a brisk walk when I do. I plug in my Amazon or Google Play music, queue up the indie hits, and enjoy the lyrics and not thinking about myself for once. The first time I got on the treadmill, I stayed on for an hour. What a mistake that was. Now I do 30 minutes and then wind down.

I am shooting for January to resume bike training with Boca Hawaii. I finish up this mess in mid December. I am expecting my strength will slowly come back. Not sure I’m looking forward to the Tantalus, Maunawili Heights, or even my friendly neighborhood Kamiloiki “Heartbreak Hill” bike rides just yet. I’m fully expecting to be Lantern Rouge as I was when I first joined Boca. Starting from scratch.

I had four years of triathlon training logged in when I found out I had melanoma. How long did I have cancer while I was training, racing, swimming, riding, and running? I felt fine. Then a test comes back and says I had cancer for who knows how long. How could I have been training so hard and not suspect? That’s the thing. How do you know YOU don’t have cancer?

You’d think I’d use this down time to write or clean or organize, but I don’t. I am, however, learning to sew with an infinitely patient teacher, Bonnie. Sewing gets me out of my funk. It requires a lot of thinking, and it pushes the negatives out of my head. Even when I am ripping out seams, I feel a certain contentment while working with the fabric and sewing the stitches.

I make the bed every morning because it gives me a small sense of accomplishment. And I tell everyone to wear sunscreen. That goes for you, too.