Do you remember that movie that came out a few years ago? Harsh Times? I didn't watch it, but I thought it was the dumbest title of a movie, like, ever. It was supposed to be a war movie or something, but what it sounds like is the movie title for Clueless 2. Alicia Silverstone's character says "harsh" all the time in Clueless:
Ty: Why am I talking to you about this? You're a virgin who can't drive.
Cher: [Tears pooling in her eyes] Ohhh, that was harsh, Ty.
Picture it on the marquee: Clueless 2 - Harsh Times.
Maybe Cher and her ex-step-brother realize that their relationship is really weird, and they break up, thereby having the harsh times. Maybe Cher's dad gets thrown in jail and Cher has to pay off all his debts and then be poor. That would give her the harsh times. The possibilities are endless, really.
Anywho, I'm so sorry I haven't updated in awhile. The main reason I haven't is that I've felt truly horrible. It's been three weeks since my last chemo (I go in tomorrow - blahhhhh), and I've had really awful side effects clear until, like, yesterday. A LOT of them I can't talk about on here. I do have some sense of appropriateness.
I did confide some of the grossness to a journalist the other day...
It's a long story. In a nutshell, she's doing a story on this camp that my kids went to last summer - Camp Kesem - and she wanted to interview me. She asked me lots of stuff, on and off the record (she would turn on and off her cell phone recording device accordingly), and one of the off-the-record things she asked about was what my side effects are. I mentioned things that are okay to mention in public and then vaguely told her that there were some other, really gross, really scary side effects, as well - things that made me so scared that I cried and cried. For realsies. She really, really wanted to know the nitty-gritty. So, off the record, I told her. She handled it well. She actually started crying... and then I started crying... Haha! I appreciated her sympathy tears. I did.
I've told you about my bronchitis (I'm still coughing, but not as badly. I think the worst of it has passed). I can tell you about my low blood pressure. It's crayyyyy not to be able to function at normal capacity. Going up the stairs winds me for a few minutes. Every time I stand up from sitting down or lying down, I have to grab some furniture and wait for the dizziness to pass. I taught ballet last Wednesday, and it just about killed me. I really wanted to finish up a grand allegro (big leaps) combination we'd been working on a couple of weeks before. I had to show them a few different jumps in this combo, and dude, I couldn't jump. I tried so hard. I'd plie and squeeze my butt cheeks and try so hard, and...nada. So I had to show them the moves by lifting myself onto the barre and showing them what their feet do in the air. So sad. A few of them were having trouble remembering the combination, so I'd do it with them. I'd say "do it with them" is a bit of an overstatement. More like stumbling around and trying not to fall.
Chemo also affects your balance - I've read that in pamphlets. And I can feel that when I'm trying to teach slow, sustained, balanced movements. My balance is just SHOT. We were doing a simple reverance on Wednesday and I almost fell right on my butt.
I overdid it so much last Wednesday that I couldn't teach Thursday. And that's another thing - you have to really conserve your energy. For instance, I went to spinning with my dad Monday (don't worry - I kept my heart rate below 150), and then I did the stationary bike and weights with my mom yesterday (I couldn't lift as much weight as her, and she's 60 years old). Neither workout really even induced any sweat. They were very low-key. And yet last night, I felt like I had been hit by a truck. I think it was from the exercise. It's weird, going from being such an active person to having to be a couch potato. It's really frustrating. I just have to keep telling myself, "But you're going to live. That's all that matters. You're going to emerge from this."
Oh, and a dude did a hit-and-run on my SUV. Luckily, I wasn't in my car when it was hit. I was inside, at my friend's house. On a residential street. But this guy must have been booking it, and I think he had a really big, jacked-up truck. Because when he ran into my car, he pushed the right rear bumper clear up onto the sidewalk (flattening my tire) and the left driver's side clear out into the road. The left back is crunched pretty hard. We have a $500 deductible. Boo-yah. Spending money on fixing cars is fun. We called the police and he did some investigative work - he thinks it's a big truck, blue (his truck left blue marks amidst the crunchiness that is the back of my car right now). From the tracks in the snow, the officer deduced that the truck hit the breaks to stop for a stop sign a couple of car lengths in front of my car, and he slid into my car. And then backed up and drove off.
So yeah, kind of a bummer of a week. But it's okay. Here's a silver lining - when we first got our SUV four or five years ago, I immediately (and accidentally) backed up into a light post at the end of my parents' driveway. That light post is a serious hazard. I remain resolute on my opinion of that. At any rate, it left this...well, incision. I can't think of a better word for it. Because I can't think of words. It seriously looks like someone got an exacto blade and sliced it up and down. We haven't ever had money to fix it, so there it's been for all of these years. Well, the silver lining is that we are getting a whole new bumper. Incision gone. That's nice. Now if we could just get the driver's side heatie seatie button fixed...wish we could claim that as part of the accident: "But officer, the impact of the hit-and-run must have jiggled my heatie seatie button loose, thus tragically taking away my ability to warm my tooshie in these frigid temperatures!"
The real reason that button is loose somewhere in the ether of behind-the-dashboard is because my oldest children were fighting over who could sit in the front seat one day. I was grabbing Gage and Micah and my purse and all that crap while they ran out into the car. Things got physical (My kids? Naw...) and they somehow, someway, hit that button, and it fell backwards behind the dashboard. End of warm tooshie for me.
For the record, they were both grounded. Tooshie warmth is of utmost importance to me.
So, to offset the bummerishness of this post, let me show you what I saw at Sam's Club with my mom yesterday. While we were there for like three hours. I'll let you in on a little secret: my mom is the slowest shopper I have ever met. Even slower than Ben. And that's saying something. My motto with any kind of shopping is "Get in, get done, get out." So it's hard for me to walk around with meandering shoppers. I love her to death. I love Ben to death. It's just a fact that they're slow shoppers. It's a quirk. And we all know how many hundreds of quirks I have.
Anywho, we saw this toy:
Who on God's green earth wants a doll that magically poops charms??? It ain't right, you guys. It just ain't right. Notice that you can collect the charms once they've been defacated from the doll's bottom. And apparently make a bracelet out of said defacated charms. Normally I'm a La-La-Loopsy fan, but this is really pushing the envelope for me.
Kay, so...chemo is tomorrow. Wish me luck. I keep having these daydreams that the doc will say, "You know what? You've done enough. You're finished. Congratulations." OR that he'll say, "You know, your blood pressure is too low. We need to put your chemo off for another week." But that wouldn't necessarily be a good thing, because then it would put off my ability to get up to Bend after Christmas. Still, another week of recovery would do me a lot of good, dude. Usually, at this time, I'm fully recovered and ready to take on another round. This one - this one is different. I haven't climbed out of the hole from the last one.