how am i not myself?

When I get sick, stressed, or am just not feeling myself, the best comfort to me is to be silent. I enjoy listening to other people over the sound of my own voice, but most of all I love the places my mind takes me when I am silent. I know there aren’t many people that can relate to me in that respect, and it scares them how silent I can be. That makes me think my mind is a lot less scary a place than most people. But I can’t say if that’s true. I’m faced with scary thoughts, and I move past them.

When I got to radiation today, Gloria was there. I don’t actually know her name, but she looks like a Gloria. She is always found sitting with family in the waiting room, and considering the fact that family is not allowed back in our waiting room (due to those of us who have to wait in hospital gowns) it stands to reason she is terrified. This morning she was alone, and for the first time in my life, I was less concerned with having my quiet time, and I was overcome with compassion for her, and so I, out of character, went and sat next to her.
“I can always tell who is being treated for what based on what they’re wearing. I have no pants under my robe, so you know it’s got to be my ovaries or my butthole. If the person is wearing pants under their robe, it means breast or lung cancer. You have no robe at all, that means it’s your brain.”
“It is. My brain is being treated, but it started in my lungs,” Gloria replies. She goes on to tell me about her liver disease from 20 years ago, and the breast cancer she had 15 years ago. When I told her about my condition I could see tears begin in her eyes.
“I’m just a wee one when I comes to cancer. I haven’t seen anyone pantless around here in the mornings and definitely no one even close to my age. I’m not sure how to feel about that.”
Just as I was finishing my sentence, Gloria points to a pantless man walking in, “How many treatments you have left?” She asks him.
“Oh about 35. You?”
“This is my last week, then I start Chemo. I’m feeling great right now, but I’m starting to lose me hair.” She says with a pout.
Pointing at his naturally balding head, “You ain’t getting any sympathy from me, mine won’t be growing back.

In walked Spock to bring me in for my radiation, and back in the treatment area there were more Star Trek characters. I made it into work today to be the only one with a costume. A vampire made it in later in the morning so I’m not alone anymore.

Noticeable side effects these last couple days have been in my throat. It’s sore and seems to be made worse by heavy breathing and talking. I have to eat soft foods, sit still, and talk as little as possible to avoid straining it. Lunch break is over. Time to get back to work. Is there such a thing as being paid to nap? I would rock a job like that right now.


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About Kamina Kapow

I have dimples and friends

9 responses to “how am i not myself?”

  1. Robyn Schultze says :

    Happy Halloween Kamina. I just read your blog for today. I’m not sure what your spiritual beliefs are or how you feel about coincidence or serendipity, but you were a great comfort to the women you spent time with in the waiting room today as she was to you in reminding you in her own way. If you believe in God, know that God did not make this happen; life made it happen and He never said it would be easy. What we make of what we are given is the big thing here, and I can see you have a lot of what it takes to be not only influential to others, but you have the inner strength to persevere and the wisdom to take care of your whole self while you manage it all. My heart and thoughts are with you every day as you move through your treatment. Being an inspiration to others can be a bit of a burden, so don’t worry about that either. Your existence is an inspiration to all of us because of who you are, and your daily blogs keep us mindful of not only your climb through this obstacle course that disease brings, but also keeps us in touch with our own minds and mortality. Best to you today and always. – Robyn

  2. Robyn Schultze says :

    Herbal Medicinals makes a tea that’s kinda gross but improves if you add honey, called Throat Coat. It works and may sooth your tender throat symptoms.

  3. Markis Melarkis says :

    Beautiful scene that deftly humanizes the sick and also steals some secrecy from the back room. I felt like a fly on the wall, a fly who is impressed and proud of his clever wife. ❤

    • Paul Palmer says :

      Markis Merarkis, You too are loved. You are the best husband any wife could ask for. I know you are doing everything you can think of the help Kamina through this. I’m proud of you son. Actually my favorite son.
      Love, Dad

  4. Paul Palmer says :

    You said in an earlier post you were tired. That is part of the side effect of radiation treatments. I had radiation treatments on my arm when I was 20. I was so full of energy before the treatments began. I played football and basketball and went to college full time. Then after the treatments began all I wanted to do was sleep. No energy at all. I don’t even remember going to classes though I know I did. So if a little radiation can slow a hyper active 20 year old, give yourself a break and rest when you can. A nap sounds good. I know I did that a lot. I only had five treatments but didn’t get my full energy back for a year. This is a long trip. My hear, my thoughts and my prayer are with you all the way. Love you Kamina, You Dad-in-law, Paul

  5. Natasha Greenman-Ruzynski says :

    I’m glad you talked to Gloria.
    Hope your side-effects got easier today.

  6. Sarah-bo-bera? says :

    I’m glad to know you made a friend while waiting for treatment. So proud of you, Kamina, and wishing you health and vitality soon.

  7. Amber Gregory says :

    Your mind is so fascinating.

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