Is it Possible I am Starting to Like the Monday Steroid Highs?

Here it is Monday already and I hardly can remember what I did this past weekend. Hmmm….well, Len and I went to Austin and popped in to see Edward to shaved my head again…I want it to all be brand new hair when it grows back…I may not have to shave it again…looks like a real bald head now…in fact it is even shiny where there is no hair. This morning when I got up I realize I really do look a person with cancer.

I am a lucky woman. I mean, lucky. Edward gave me a beautiful pair of earrings that I will treasure AND Barbara W., friend from Christ Church old days, gave me a pair of really dramatic turquoise and bone earrings. I hope I don’t end up with Munchausen Syndrome because I have had so much positive attention. Eeeeak I can’t think of that.


So here is the thing I am noticing: I am starting to actually enjoy the Monday steroid high. I was all over the map today. I had my first real learning session with Dr. E. to learn self hypnosis. I am so hopeful that I can practice this sufficiently to make it part of my self-regulation and ability to down shift not just for the hot flashes….which is why I am going, but also to sleep better and to control anxiety…maybe even lower my blood pressure during chemo. Dr. E. said he believes I am very receptive–I think he may have hypnotized me….it was very relaxing and I was certainly aware of all he was saying. I have a CD that I am to listen to before falling asleep….thank goodness for the iPhone and light weight ear phones so I am not laying in bed with the big Bose ear phones I use when I fly. Tonight I will try them for the first time. Ooops, here is something I want to remember…Dr. E. told me he wants me to focus on self-compassion. I think that is very interesting.

I had a great time today…I mean great. I went by and saw Mike Hoelscher at the shop and while I was there, Pam’s Daddy came in…92 and still driving. Pam looked like Anton. I say this every time, but I am so grateful that they keep me in their lives. I think of Pam so often….recently I feel her presence when I am doing chemo. She was always there to back me up. No, I will not get weepy. She died in 2003. I guess it is true that you don’t stop missing people after they die even after years. Ok, Ok, I am getting weird.

It occurred to me that I had a package for Mom to mail so I decided to go to the main Temple Post Office hoping I could meet my new friend, Anita N. who gave me the chemo throw. Wehen I went in there were only men at the counter so when it was my turn I asked if she was there…keeping in mind how they might not be receptive…but the fella at the window just called over his shoulder, “Anita, you have a customer that wants to see you.” She came out and it was amazing. This is a woman I have seen for years and never realized that one day she would reach out and touch me so deeply. When I introduced myself she said, “Please wait, I want to come around the counter.” A minute later the door opened and she came to me and hugged me. It was a very special moment for me. To think of how many times over the years that I have seen her and even talked to her through some mailing. I can tell she is a breast cancer supporter–she had a little pink ribbon pin she put on my shirt and proudly pointed out her new ‘tat-tas!’


For some reason, I was really feeling the steroid surge…even though I was taking the Benadryl so it seemed the perfect time to hit the new HEB Plus in Belton—I am currently calling it

Gucci B. Len and I had done a field trip there the day before but this was a chance to scope it all out. Wow and Holy Cow. That place is just enormous. There is nothing like a grocery store for an ol’ Home Ec teacher. I was so stimulated and feeling a wee bit nauseas…still I surged on. It was the most over stimulating experience. I ran into two former students, former hair stylist, and former TISD colleague. I mean I was rockin’—I stayed 2.5 hours, for crying out loud.

Nausea. For the past two days I have had something like morning sickness….without really getting sick. Just queasy. I really don’t want to start taking the prescription I have if I don’t need it.

I am still feeling what I am calling heightened sensory awareness. It isn’t just senses but I am enjoying some kinds of introspective clarity. Now as I told Len, I am not thinking for a minute this is wisdom but it is very pleasant. One chum and I were talking and wondered if this couldn’t be just another side effect of chemo….I never in my life took any hallucinogenic drugs, small wonder, I might add–but this is, after all, chemo…who knows? I did mention this to Dr. E, the psychologist teaching me self-hypnosis. He seemed to think it is plausible. I mean I am actually sharper on Mondays. Hells bells, I actually beat Susan L two or three times at Words with Friends. This is BIG since she has beaten me nearly 20+ times and usually by 100 points!

OK, already maybe I am not as sharp as I think I am but I like it…Suz reminded me today not to get used to it since I have ONLY 6 more treatments. Changing the subject but not the paragraph: I reallllllllllllly want to go to FL in December and visit Steph. It isn’t really a great time for her I think, but she is willing to let me come….I need it. It is the gift of her friendship I need now. It will depend on my white blood count. I can get really furious thinking about how inconvenient this is. Roberta told me when I was diagnosed to expect to lose a year of my life. Damn.

Tonight is book club…The Girl in Transition…I am reading a lot…just took my blood pressure and just as Shane said, it is fine as long as I am home and happy and not doing chemo. 114/63. Not bad.

Edward and his friend Chuck have invited me to come to Edward’s house for a make up session — I want to learn some tips for my bald self portrait. I think I will take the camera and my new wireless shutter device. This will be very cool.


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