Jane Ballot

Being me in the world

Thursday 19th February

Today, for the first time in what seems like ages (but may only be a week or so), I found myself saying, “I’m so tired.” And I definitely felt it.

I also had the chemo taste for most of the day.

Michael asked me why I was so tired. I told him that the heat drains anyone, also, rushing here and there in the car is tiring, so is teaching, actually.

All of those definitely contributed to my sense of fatigue, but I think there was something about the chemo effect too. It seems as though it’s a matter of ‘waves’ of the chemicals still having their draining effect. Maybe that’s how it works: your body is working to eliminate the rest of the drugs, but at times the effects are just ‘there’.

I realised just how debilitating the effects of the chemo actually were today when I was feeling so tired. It was nothing like the horrible exhaustion I lived with for the whole number of weeks while still on chemo, but it was enough of an echo to remind me how drained and almost overwhelmed I was feeling then.

Sometimes, maybe it’s a good thing to be reminded of something not so good to help you to focus on how good the alternative is.

It’s like this heat, I suppose. In a couple of months, I am going to look back on these days with their extreme temperatures quite fondly, I think. Hopefully by then I will have a lot more hair, so that my head is not terribly, terribly cold!

For now, though, I really, really enjoy finding a swimming pool and having even a quick swim. Or I enjoy being on the dam and being constantly splashed, even slightly, by the paddle.

I have got into the habit, again, of doing some form of exercise every day. Well, just about every day. Yesterday, with an early class and then all the running around everywhere, I didn’t manage to go for a paddle or a run. Makes me feel fat and unproductive. With feeling so tired, though, it also made me realise, again, just what the effects of the chemo (etc) have been.

I will run and/or paddle today – and tomorrow. Some days I may be tired, others I will even do both. My hair will continue to grow. The chemo taste will come and go. I will continue to feel drained at times, in between feeling generally less tired.

One day, though, my hair will have grown back completely, I will be running and paddling regularly and more easily, the taste will have gone forever and I will not feel even the traces of this draining exhaustion.

It’s just time and I will get there. Slowly and steadily.

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