I’m physically, emotionally, and mentally weary.
Radiation is done. I “graduated” from radiation today and got the certificate of achievement from my RO with the comment, “You really earned this.”
I woke up this morning to blood splotches on my night shirt. One of the burns is on my mastectomy scar…right on the scar. Apparently, as I slept last night, the skin split and bled on and off throughout the night. When I discovered it this morning, I lost it. Throughout this whole process, I’ve been told a burn on my mastectomy scar could be bad because there’s not a lot between the scar and expander, hence why I had so many breaks. I did everything I was supposed to do to avoid a burn there, but it happened anyway. So, as dramatic as it sounds, I stood in our bathroom and cried. Then, I semi put myself back together and went to work where a friend opened the floodgates again by asking me if I was ok.
How I made it through today at work, I’m not quite sure. My students knew something was up because they were unusually cooperative and considerate. I didn’t tell them, even when they asked. They know I’ve had a bad reaction to radiation with some significant burning….it’s hard to keep it from them unless I wear turtlenecks, which…no. I think most of them assumed I was having issues with my burns, which is true.
My RO looked closely at the burn on my scar. It’s not infected, but the fact it’s bleeding is concerning. He wants to see me again in a week to check my skin, especially since I have other areas of significant burning. I have to do everything possible to keep the burn on the mastectomy scar from worsening, and I have to do whatever I can to help it heal. If it gets worse, it will result in me losing my expander on the left side. I cannot handle that. So, I’m in bed with gauze pads coated in medicine over it, held in place by an Ace bandage since I can’t use tape or bandages to hold anything in place on my radiated skin. It’s too fragile right now.
I’m so tired. I’m tired of seeming dramatic. I’m tired of feeling traumatized, which may sound ridiculous, but truthfully, it’s how I feel right now. The last two months have been hard physically, mentally, and emotionally. Hell, it’s been physically, mentally, and emotionally hard since August. I’m just weary.
Tonight, when I changed shirts and found the burn on my mastectomy scar bleeding again, I told A I don’t know how much more I can take. He told me I have to start looking at this as a period of healing, physically and emotionally. He said I have to stop saying I have cancer and instead say I’m recovering from cancer. I told him I feel like no matter what I do, I’m always going to have cancer. He told me he would be shocked if I didn’t feel that way right now with everything I’ve been through over the last eight months. He told me we have to start taking some small steps to help me reclaim my life and a little normalcy during this period of healing.
I don’t know what that looks like. I’m too weary to figure it out right now.