Last night was an awful night. Cara fell apart, wanting guarantees that I could not give her, that I would not give her. "Cara," I said, "the easy thing would be to promise you that everything will be just fine. I can't. I don't know." I did not realize that her friend's mother had died. I hadn't realized that she was struggling. I tried to say all the right things, but you know what? I hated it. I hated watching her crying. I hated it when she looked square at me, fiercely, demanding that I promise her that I would not die of cancer. I hated it that I had to say, 'that's not my call, Cara.' It was an emotional evening. Being women of fine good humor, she said at one point, 'You are supposed to live long enough to get dementia and drive me crazy...' and I said, helpfully, "Well, if you like, I could drool on my shirt front to make you feel better." The conversation started off with tears, ended up with wry humor. "Hard times make you wise..." and "Well, I'd just as soon be dumb as rocks..."
When I went to bed last night, I could not sleep. My shoulder ached awfully, and the throbbing went into my back. I got up to take a pain killer. That was all she wrote. I laid awake for the rest of the night, unable to get into a comfortable position. This morning, I got up and went to work. I was sick with exhaustion, sick to my stomach. So, I gave up. Many of you suggested speaking to a doctor before the end of the month PET scan. Following your suggestions, I went to the cancer center. I told them them about the pain. About how sometimes I could not get comfortable enough to sleep. I asked questions so that I knew what to say to my kids.
The blood work 'looked good'. That was good news. And although there are unanswered questions, the doctor said there was no cause for alarm at this point in time. She also gave me a card with her phone number and a social worker's phone number for Cara. There was some discussion about controlling the pain and getting proper rest. I walked out of there feeling better. Like at least I have a plan to get through the rest of the month. Like at least I know how to help Cara.
Eeeh. This is such a roller coaster.