I have no idea how I feel either.
First, my relationship with this cancer is very complicated. I should tell you that it has taken me over 6 months to actually write this. I have put it off and repressed so far down I forgot it was happening. I am not known for “stuffing things down” and ignoring emotions but there’s something about this situation that has created a “warrior” of repression for me.
As a women of wellness, I pride myself on identifying emotions. As a psychotherapist, I encourage expressing emotions. But….. As caregiver to someone going through chemo, I am a HOT damn mess and I cannot even (tell how what I am thinking or what emotions are happening.
This procress is messy, confusing, and scary as hell!!! Sometimes, I am sitting in the chemo treatments with my mother and we are laughing and I just look up and think “oh right that’s a needle in my mothers arm and it has a chemo in it”. Oh wait, here’s my favorite thought, “yes a four day week ! no work on Friday…. Oh wait it’s a chemo day, riiiiight”. These “emotional epiphanies” just jump out of no where and bite me in the ass.
I am not sure how others are dealing with their feelings about all of this but mine are very different from day to day (minute to minute). I don’t know what helps, but I don’t know what doesn’t. For me (and please know this is all very individual) I cannot do support groups. I tried and I just couldn’t connect to what people were saying about their relationships with cancer survivors. I would leave just being so drained. Once (or twice) I lost it on the commute home that my partner had to come get me (I had MAJOR ugly cry face).
I also know that the days after getting PET scan results (which have not been great), I am very messy emotionally. I can turn on the drop of a hat. Last week, we were told not such great news. I was on my way home and talking with my partner about what to eat and other non sense. When I got home, (poor guy) I instantly laid into him about something insane and began ugly cry face again. Holy Crap its like watching a schizophrenic chahuahua.
So here we are with messy feelings and crying face. UGH! But sometimes I’m left with “wow this is an Amazing memory” (my mom looking to me for help explaining her feelings like I’m the “mom whisperer”). Other times, I cannot stop dying laughing as my mother is getting sassy with the doctor or almost takes out the valet with one death stare.
For now, I will take the messiness and memories to figure it out along the way. My intention is for those “warrior caregivers” to know that you’re not alone with this “stuff”.
Reach out! Yell! Laugh!
……… Or allow the ugly little schizophrenic chahuahua rear its nasty little head.