I have to be honest. Chemo IS as bad as everyone says it is. I could never have imagined that I would feel so awful. The painful mouth sores were really difficult to deal with. In the chemo room where patients received their treatments, volunteers came around offering ice pops and cups of ice chips. A lot of people took them. They said it made their mouth sores feel better. I, on the other hand, could not partake in these treats. My mouth was extremely sensitive to anything cold.
That summer, my son broke the news that he was going to ask his girlfriend to marry him. I was so excited. They had been dating for years and our whole family liked her. I hugged him and told him how happy I was. Then I remembered my hair. I didn’t have any. Uh oh. “Please don’t get married until my hair grows back,” I begged. Well at least I had the two free wigs that I got from the American Cancer Society. I could wear one of those if I had to. To be honest, I hadn’t worn either of the wigs yet. I tried to, but they were kind of uncomfortable. And since it was summer they were very hot on my head. Besides the fact I didn’t think either one of them looked like me. So my baseball cap pretty much never left my head. However, I really didn’t want to wear that to the wedding.
In December my mother came to live with us. She was in poor health and couldn’t really be left alone anymore. She was on oxygen 24/7. She didn’t want me to have to take care of her when I was not feeling well myself. It took a little bit of convincing on my part to get her to move in, but she did. I don’t know who was in worse shape. Her or me? Towards the end she was in a wheelchair. I barely had any strength yet I was able to push her around the house to the kitchen for meals, to the bathroom, to the living room to watch TV and to her bedroom at night. Luckily, I live in a ranch house so we didn’t have to deal with stairs. We commiserated on the condition we both were in. It was kind of nice being there for eachother.