Never really gone

Once you have cancer a headache is not merely a headache, it’s a potential tumor.

My gallbladder issues–although garden variety in nature–were immediately suspect for liver, pancreas, metastases as sources of trouble. Some scary moments there, as each of those scenarios would have meant a further limitation of options. When running on empty, you want to keep the road as clear as possible.

Fortunately my worst fears (like that headache, always in my back pocket) were not realized.

And in true lemonade from lemons fashion, my little adventure resulted in some marvelous insights.

First, that my family is indeed my rock. Good, that.

Secondly, that underneath the me of lorlatinib, my old, true self is extant.

WTF am I talking about? Well, Alice had me hold drug once I’d been admitted. I went six days without therapy. Lorlatinib comes with a host of strange side effects and within days, some of them began to subside. Alice was the first to notice that my speech was not so slow. And suddenly I was intensely aware of everyone’s cologne–I hadn’t even realized my olfactory had been compromised.

My neuropathy in my feet is so severe I can walk around with pebbles in my shoe and not know it. My toenails have all gotten ingrown while on lorlatinib, requiring surgery on eight of the ten. One is still pretty raw but normally I can’t feel it. Suddenly it hurt like hell.

But, best of all, I started to feel like me. My ability to think in an organized and linear fashion had magically returned.

Sigh. It was but a brief visit with myself, as I started back on drug two days ago. Two sleepless nights later I am once again struggling to complete tasks and my toes are numb.

However, there is comfort in knowing that I’ve never really gone.

5 responses to “Never really gone

  1. Your toes may be numb, but your brain certainly isn’t! You were a wellspring of facts, history, narrative, and support in our last communication; and you pulled me out of a large black hole. If that was a second-rate performance, you’ve already reached and exceeded warrior status. xo maryw

  2. janheintzmanlindsay

    Love you Linnea and your numb bad ass self.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing about your experiences. And I agree: your posts are eloquent , thoughtful, humorous. So, even though you may feel compromised by the meds, your writing is sharp and all there. I am a breast cancer patient, currently in chemotherapy. I am so grateful to those who post about their cancer experiences. It gives me information and a broader perspective. And, especially, courage to look my situation in the eye and to be open sharing about it with others.

  4. I get how having met cancer one is always on edge. Glad you got to see the underlying you for even a short glimpse. Remember you are still there xxx

  5. Wow. Welcome back, dear one. ❤

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