I've never been to jail; although I can't imagine it's much different from what I've experienced this last year. Often, I feel imprisoned by my own body, trapped and unable to break free. I count down the days until I can feel the sun on my face again, feel the ocean breeze or simply walk without being carefully watched by others. The portable chemo I take home serves as a constant reminder of my limitations. Each appointment with my doctors is a parole meeting of sorts. Will I be free soon or will I be given more time to serve? I suppose I should just be grateful for the week I get of freedom but I can't. See, the thought of going back to prison the next week hangs over me like the sword of Damocles and sometimes it makes gratitude damn near impossible. But I try.
Why am I so melancholy today? Well, I happen to be looking at a bunch of pictures I took to chronicle this experience and I'm realizing just how much I've been through. Yep, it has finally started to hit. 56 weeks and 20 treatments which means almost half of those weeks were spent in bed, miserable and sick. Yes, that is very 'glass half empty' and a more positive approach would be to focus on those weeks that were rockin'; the ones where I was living life to the fullest. I get it. But, I'm not there right now. Right now I'm looking at images of myself when I had my port put in, when I had my first chemo treatment and others that show the physical manifestations of chemo such as hair loss, weight loss and the lack of color in my face. I realized after my 7th treatment I stopped taking pictures. I didn't want to see myself anymore.
I'm scheduled for another treatment this Wednesday which also happens to be my son's 17th birthday. How ironic. 17 years to the day I gave my son life, I will continue to fight for my own. Maybe it will also be the day when my doctor tells me I will soon be released from the confinements of chemo. If not, I will just continue doing my time and fighting until I'm finally free.