*You cannot un-see these pictures. Graphic descriptions. Full on vulnerability, probably TMI*
Journal Entry #11
Today is day #5 of taking the Miltefosine. I slept for 12 hours last night, and it was much needed. Yesterday started off great – I was able to do a few light chores around the house, did some journaling, sat outside in the sunshine to read and had a visit with my sister-in-law, Lisa. About 1pm the stomach cramping started…you know the kind? Like a vice squeezing you from all sides. And then the diarrhea hit. Black. Liquid. Acid. It is a good thing our couch is only 20 feet from the bathroom, because I wouldn’t have made it much further. I kept with the fluids and the Saltines (thank-you Lisa), and rested in-between bouts.
At one point, I had a shower, hoping that would help me feel human. And also, the kids had their annual Eye Doctor appointments at 4pm, that I was hoping to go to. As I stepped out of the shower, another bout hit.
And then I cried.
I cried with the realization that I wouldn’t be able to take the kids to their appointment. I cried because I felt useless and helpless. I cried because this sucks. It is the first time that I have cried because of this predicament. It was cathartic. And I allowed myself to go there. Why is this happening to me? Why is the medication worse than the bugs? I am only 4 days in – how will I do another 24 days? It really sucks being a non-contributing member of society…so I allowed myself to hate the bugs for what they have been doing to my body and how they are preventing me from doing what I love.
I recognized that I was having a pity party…that I entered into the vortex of victimhood. As I looked into the mirror, I affirmed that I am strong, that this is just part of the process – my body’s way of healing and evacuating the poison. This is only temporary. I’ve got this. Affirmations. Repeat. I repeated until I found solid ground outside of the vortex.
By the time I had my hair combed and fresh pyjamas on, I had settled back down…drowning in fatigue. But my body wouldn’t let me rest. It needed its friend the toilet, more than it needed the warm blankets and pillow that I craved.
Thank God, for friends. Daphne arrived to take the kids and I to the appointment (I am not allowed to drive while on the meds.) But I simply couldn’t go. She took the kids and did surrogate mom duty for me. AND she kindly picked up some Anusol for me. Because haemorrhoids suck.
My friend Sara stopped by for a quick visit on her way home from work – I am thankful for the connection to the outside world and for friendships that withstand the test of time. Sara has always been the kind of friend who is steady and strong, comfortable with silence when it is needed, cracks jokes at just the right moment and is completely self-less when it comes to the care of others. She is a master at being present. And I am grateful to call her my friend for more than 25 years.
Dinner arrived – a gourmet chicken dinner made by Karen – which made my family very happy. I have a strong metal-like taste in my mouth now, that alters the taste of food, but I really appreciated the protein last night. I know I have to have food in my belly when I take the meds, so I was sure to chow at chow time.
I found myself in bed and hard asleep by 8:30, but with no naps yesterday it is totally understandable. I took 2 Gravol and a shot of CBD oil and called it a night.
Today, is a new day. I feel refreshed after a 12+ hour sleep. I even vacuumed this morning.
As I write this, I am noticing how green the grass is and how the buds on the trees are starting to drop as their little leaves are emerging. A cardinal is flitting about in the grass right now…and I think we all know who she is.
Perhaps the little microcosm that I find myself in, is a reflection of the bigger world. We all go through shit, and we all have shitty moments. But it is important to recognize that one shitty moment doesn’t destroy the whole day, or the whole experience. It is just one moment and it can hold whatever meaning we attach to it. Was yesterday afternoon shitty? Totally. But not the whole day. And even amongst the shittiest part of my day, I experienced connection with my friends, hugs and snuggles with my kids and my husband, shared a few haemorrhoid jokes, enjoyed a delicious meal…but most of all experienced love. I’m seeing that the trick is to allow the emotions to come and go (they will anyway)…and recognize that I get to choose which ones I want to engage in.
Today, I am going to be aware of the flow and consciously choose which ones I want to engage in. I’ll let you know how it goes.
Some of you are asking if I am feeling better being on the drugs and if the wounds are starting to heal. Unfortunately, the answer is no. There has been no change to the wounds on my arm or hand. The wound on my foot is still an active feeding ground. Although the colour of the wound has changed slightly, the bugs have invaded new tissue and the skin is starting to bubble up where they are most active. I haven’t noticed any significant change around my nose. But I am not dismayed. Dr. Bogglid said that it could be 12-16 weeks before the wound on my foot is completely closed, and that I likely wouldn’t see my body kick into gear to build new tissue until about 4 weeks after I started to take the medication. Again, we exercise patience. And stay the course.
I’ve got this.