it is 5:00 p.m. in the holy city of zefat. every time that i feel like i'm getting right back on track, i have a setback. since i've been home, i've been sick constantly. after i got the house ready for a simcha, i collapsed into bed for a couple of weeks. i then rallied all possible strength to clean the house for pesach. after doing minimum amount of work, i collapsed into bed for the rest of pesach. it felt like the flu. i finally got back on my feet and celebrated independence day with a barbecue with the family. i ate like a truck driver and enjoyed everything. i had kebabs, franks, lamb chops, steak, chicken wings, liver and marshmallows. i also had fresh salads for the first time in months.
while i was in treatment, i avoided eating anything raw except bananas and green apples. the apples were a a life safer. sometimes when i couldn't eat or drink fluids, i would suck the juice from the apples. shortly after independence day, i experienced stomach flu like symptoms. and once again, i had diarrhea. at first, i thought that it was due to eating raw food. however, when it lasted for over two weeks, i was concerned. i brought in a stool sample just to check. i was told that there was an outbreak of dysentery in the country.
the diarrhea finally subsided and i felt well again. i managed to make it over to the clinic on my own. i took the local bus all by myself. it is a 20 minute walk. i used to run over to that area all the time by foot. i haven't done any extensive walking in months. i took a blood test for which i had to fast 12 hours, and brought in the stool sample. i even got to chat with the social worker. i used the wrong vial for the stool sample so i had to go back to the clinic the following morning.
i have been trying to get some money from the social services... i was promised all kinds of renumeration from the hospital social worker. i've had three social workers come to the house and pretty much, each one has proven to be ineffective. i've been kind of screwed by every law in the book. i was promised money to get in some household help but that never happened. each time i had a home visit, i would break down and cry. i felt so useless. not being able to do my floors, or laundry, or dishes, made me crazy and quite depressed.
while we had a cold spell and unseasonable torrential rain, i stayed indoors. the house was freezing. i had the chills. i didn't dare venture outside. i stayed in bed under a goose down comforter. we then went straight into a heat wave, and i stayed in once again. i can't seem to deal with extremes in weather. my immune system is shot. when i first got sick during pesach, i was actually delighted to have the common virus that everyone had. it made me feel normal. cancer makes you feel anything but normal. when i got over the virus, i felt very hopeful. cancer makes you feel less than hopeful
i did get a good report last month from both the radiologist and gyn-oncologist. they both concluded that the tumor was no longer visible. it was apparently, successfully, nuked away. Praise the Lord!! i do my pet ct mri in another couple of weeks, and i will find out hopefully, that the cancer is no longer in the lymph notes. it is very scary. i am afraid to think about the outcome. i still have loads of people worldwide, praying for my recovery. i can't wait to be completely cancer free and get back on track..
right now, i am suffering with an upper respiratory virus. i convulse when i cough.i spit up wads of phlegm. i was feeling well enough last week to venture out. i went to bring in my specimen and met a potential suitor for brunch. we met last summer at the yeshiva where i was working. we started 'dating' aright after sukkot. then i got ill. i tried to break it off when i found out that i had the tumor. he decided to hang in there and wait until i finished treatment. we corresponded by email for months. we have only met two times since i've been home. i haven't been strong enough to socialize.
i haven't really seen many people since i returned to zefat. it is still hard for me to be around people. i still feel traumatized. i know that i look well, in spite of the setbacks. i've put on weight and have some color. i did meet someone in town who was instrumental in getting me a bit more public assistance. she said that i didn't look as though i had been ill with cancer. that was a relief. i feel like i look like an invalid. that's my head trip, i guess. i'm afraid to face the world. i have lost about three friends since i've returned home. two to cancer, and another one this week, of lou gehrig's. i should be so grateful to have survived my ordeal, but i tend to be easily depressed.
my son moved back home with his family, about two weeks before i returned. they were in financial straights and begged to come back, rent free. i was too sick and weak to refuse them. it has been an adjustment, to say the least. my grandson sneaks up here at all hours of the day. i hear the creaking of the door and then he appears. 3:00 a.m., 5:00 a.m., 7:00 a.m., 5:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m., 9:00 p.m. even the toddler crawls up the stairs to visit. when i first got back i was totally helpless. my daughter-in-law did my floors and prepared food for me. i tried desperately to stay out of her way. i was too weak to lift my grandson in my arms. climbing up the stairs was very hard. going food shopping was out of the question. i felt like a 90 year old lady.
since i've been recently sick, i haven't had the energy to go to the supermarket. i have been preparing meals from whatever i have left in the freezer. i go on occasional trips downstairs, to snag some food when the kids are out of the house. there's always tons of junk downstairs. i try to pilfer only fruit, milk, and corn flakes. i'm trying to watch the weight. after all i've been through, it's a shame to get pudgy again.