Thursday, September 09, 2010

Y'know what the weirdest part of all of this is?

(First of all, thank you, each and every one of you, for your thoughts/prayers/offers of scotch/offers to let the dog out/et cetera. It means so, so much right now; you can't know.)

So, yeah. I was having dinner with The Man of God and his Lovely Wife, and in the middle of the second bite of pizza, with us all trying to make polite conversation, I burst out, "Can we all please stop pretending that everything's okay? Because it's not."

Regardless of what happens next, I have four days ahead of me in which things will not be okay. Maybe, at the end of it, this'll all be some huge false alarm, and I can spend a couple of weeks in relieved bliss and then go back to fucking up the way I always have. Or maybe I'll get a diagnosis that mandates whiskey and gardening, and I can continue to fuck up the way I always have.

Either way, until one or the other happens, things are Not Okay.

I've spent all day apologizing to people for having to give them the news that things are not okay. I have--and this is rather a shock--more people than I expected that I wanted to tell.

(And secondly, if I didn't tell you in person and you found out about this through Facebook or the grapevine, my apologies. I didn't go in any sort of order, and at about two o'clock I found myself utterly unable to repeat the same words again.)

Can we please stop pretending that it's all okay? Thank you. I feel better now.

My pal Jo, who works the night shift opposite me, had the most appropriate reaction: a moment of silence and then the word "Shit" said calmly and without emphasis.

This is not okay.

I fear losing my airway, or worse, my ability to swallow. I fear chemo and radiation and enough of a chance that going through those things would seem like a good plan. I fear losing. I fear the process of dying, even though I've seen it more times than I can count and mostly, it's been an okay thing.

And I *have* to think about these things now, because if I get a nasty diagnosis on Tuesday, I'll be too shocky to think about them then. It's like putting an emergency kit in your car: you do it early in hopes you won't ever have to use it.

Meanwhile, the cats are playing with their toys and Max is lying on the floor staring at me and wondering why I didn't bring him more pizza bones. I have Rob and Adam and Shannon coming over tomorrow, and I don't have to pretend that things are okay with them. I do have to cook, which might be a bit of a challenge, given how much alcohol I've consumed today, but what the hell: the Chinese place delivers.

So most things are okay. This right here, this thing I'm doing with the whole breathing and digesting and metabolizing bidness, is not okay, but most things are. And they will continue to be.

So maybe it'll be okay after all. Either way, at some point it'll cease to matter, right?

19 comments:

Erica Rose said...

Well. Fuck. I hope it's good news. I really really effing hope it's good news. Wow.

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

Jo, just now read yesterday's post and i want to add my hugs, love, energy and a nod from the biggest trees ever grown to help you get thru these next four days. Cancer tried to get me in 1986-i pass the power of cleanly healing to you ...

Engranon said...

Dammit! I hate cancer and I hate cancer scares that happen to my friends. No, it's not all right and it's not okay and this weekend is going to suck. Know that I love you no matter what.

nurse XY said...

Yeesh, I don't stop by your blog for a week and you get washed away, catch the cancer...

WTF?!

Hoping and praying for the best for you!

Kimberly said...

Just adding my voice to the chorus of people thinking about you, pulling for you, waiting with you. I am glad to hear you are well supported there on the ground as well.

Anonymous said...

Another shot of Laphroaig (sp?) coming right at you. We interwebs - semi-lurkers and all - have got your back (your front undoubtedly being covered by Max and the cats).

Pixi

woolywoman said...

Not OK.
Trach does not mean not talking, at least not always. I work with trach patients a lot at the head and neck center for this region.

Had a patient who solemnly told me that if you daub a little scotch under your nose, then dump it in your gtube, you tasted it fairly well. Also, his tube never clogged.

Still not OK.

Shit.

You need to see a head and neck surgeon, too.

Michelle, WA said...

Jo, I am hoping it is an innocent hemangioma that is fucking up your week. I went through a similar fate via my 5 yr. old daughter, in her mouth as well. Prayers coming your way.

A Family From, said...

I am praying for you. Everything has a way of working itself out, however that may be. It's always fine... Everything will be ok. It's my new mantra. It is what it is, and nothing less or more. Take it as it is. You can do no less, or more.....Just be in the moment, and appreciate it...HUGS...

Steven said...

You don't know me--I think perhaps I've left a comment on your blog once before. But I'll be thinking of you all weekend and until Tuesday. Good wishes from London!

Leslie said...

Just read this post and last. I'm so sorry you're going through this - hope it turns out to be something utterly benign and all you have to cope with is a few days of terror. Not discounting the horror of that either - I've been there and it's awful. Sending good thoughts your way!

Crabby McSlacker said...

I have no idea what an "innocent hemangioma" is, but I'm with Michelle--let's hope it's one of those.

So sorry you're going through this. God it must suck. Will be thinking warm & positive thoughts & sending hugs & hoping for good news next week.

Luis said...

Absolutely right, Jo. Fuck pretending like it's OK. And keep stocking that emotional go-bag -- just don't overpack.

Heidi said...

Damn, Jo. This fucking sucks. Will be thinking of you nearly every minute and anxiously waiting for updates. Big, big hugs and lots of love.

RehabNurse said...

The place you're unfortunately in is not the land of OK, it's the land of WTF is it?

WTF land is inhabited by many unknowns lurking around corners, etc., and unfortunately, you just need one guide to start opening doors and then stuff falls out from behind said doors.

It surely sucks waiting for guide and the doors to open.

May you have plenty of peace, steak and scotch while you wait. Don't consider it medication...just meditation.

Hope your news comes when you want it.

messymimi said...

You are correct, it is not okay.

Thus my yelling at G-d on your behalf will continue. Even if you get good news, you will be in my prayers, because you are one great lady.

Anonymous said...

You are a person of courage; I hold good thoughts and prayer for you.

Hold on to courage; it will get you through.

EugeneInSanDiego

Lori said...

Hugs and thoughts and more hugs

Colette said...

That sucks. I hope it's good news on Tuesday.