Yeah, you know that unspoken deal I had with cancer? The one where I would allow it to live in my body and do what it's gotta do as long as I remain me, as long as I can remain Lisa, look like Lisa (I didn't even mind it taking my hair.....TWICE), think like Lisa, be Lisa, just with a terminal disease, well I'm pretty certain the bitch has started to renege on our agreement, granted it was verbal and obviously there was no handshake, but up until now I was pretty certain Cancer and I had an understanding and we were preaching from the same bible.
I would say I have lost at least 70% of "pre" cancer Lisa, I'm almost unrecognisable, if it weren't for regular Facebook updates and selfies, no-one would recognise me if they bumped into me in the street, I'm a good 10 kilo's heavier (at least, I can't bring myself to stand on the scale) and I'm only "nearly" 5 ft, that's thanks to the drug dexamethasone, I have the lovely moonface from the same drug, I have a hump growing at the base of my neck and top of my spine (yes like the hunchback of Notre Dame), again from Dex, my vision is impaired, from the same drug, I have the hairiest face you've ever seen, I mean seriously I'm talking Monkey Magic type hairy, I have cognitive confusion and memory retention/loss issues, I'm no longer able to drive, I am spasming in both hands, feet and back, all side effects from the same drug, I am on 24 hour pain relief, I take a bloody wheelchair with me in the car everywhere I go, I have a hospital bed ordered (yeah an electric bed sounds cool, but for those of you who haven't had the great pleasure of sleeping more than a week in one of those things, it's like sleeping on cement after a while, those mattresses are so bloody hard and don't get me started on the air mattress, that thing moves all day and night long and it's noisy, that is way more uncomfortable than the normal hospital bed, I refuse to sleep on the air mattress as it also hurts my tumours), I require a nurse visit to my home every 48 hours, I can no longer fly overseas, I can perhaps travel short interstate flights, but I need to link up with a palliative care unit wherever I go so that I can have my (at least, sometimes they're daily) 48 hour nurse visits, my palliative doctor can just order me into a hospital admission, but I feel the biggest one, other than the appearance, actually that would be my biggest one, because you can see that and not everyone knows you're in the middle of fighting for your life every goddamn day, so secondary but it would nearly equal it, would be my personality.
I am struggling, I am more up and down than a shopaholic who's waiting for a courier delivery, I'm more emotional than a Kim Kardashian crying emoji and I'm one angry mofo, I just lash out like Tom Cruise in a postnatal depression debate, things are becoming Scientology unstable and this is NOT acceptable to me.
Look i've always been an opinionated and fiery type of person, if you annoy me, I'll tell you, if you upset me, you'll know it, but there's usually good reasoning behind my dislike of you, you're probably just a dick and that's fine, just don't be one around me. I love people, I love talking to people (usually inappropriately), random people in shops or on the street, I just love a good old chin wag and getting to know someone else's story (I get sick of my own story), I like to think that over the years I've learnt to (by the way I have just had a little blog break, as I remembered there were leftovers from dinner in the fridge in a snap lock bag and I have just devoured the left overs and turned the bag inside out and proceeded to lick the residue from the left over dinner, because the actual food wasn't enough, I had to lick the bag, what have I become? I'll tell you what I've become, a leftovers eating and licking at 10.30pm out of a snap lock bag because I couldn't even wait to put it on a plate and heat it, I had to just devour it cold out of the fridge person, that's what I've become!) somewhat control my talent for putting my foot in it, my mother would probably tell you otherwise, but I believe that I had started to hold back a bit in recent years, I mean Mum thinks I've loved all of her recent birthday and Christmas presents she has bought me, now that's holding back, just kidding Mum, I've loved them, every single one of them 🙄. I really do love you Geraldine and I'm so thankful for you, because no-one else would put up with me.
I hate not being in control and to not be in control of yourself is such a foreign experience that unless you've gone through it, I don't think you could ever fully understand it. Cancer is hard enough by itself, never mind all of the other things that come with it as a consequence of basically keeping me alive. I hate being all "woe is me", it's not the type of person I am or is that was? I don't even know "myself" anymore.
My biggest fear is losing my mind completely, so I've raised this issue the other night when I stayed in hospital and we have changed one drug, but the drug that's a non negotiable is the dexamethasone and that's the one that so far has stolen the 70% part of me and to top it off the doctor told me I will also continue to gain weight whilst on it, it won't just plateau one day, I will just continue to get bigger and bigger, so fabulous, I will eventually be a morbidly obese terminal cancer patient, things are really looking up 😜!
I look back at the photos from a year ago when I first started the drug and luckily I was only on it for a short period of time at that stage, so once I stopped the drug, the appearance and slow brain issues subsided, it took a number of months, but they did, so now I have to face the fact that I will be on this drug that is the devil, for good, but it's keeping my pain levels down, so it's a necessary evil.
My hope is that in 6 months time I am sitting here on my bed in my Christmas time pyjamas and writing a witty and festive blog about the fact that I'm here for another Christmas and Cancer can go stuff itself, but will this drug allow me to do that?
This too shall pass (the distress of it all I mean) and If I can't stay fabulous, promise me you will x
Ps. This blog was written last night at a very low point, upon completion of this blog, I actually read a comment from a woman in Gundagai (a small country town on the NSW/VIC border known for a dog on a tuckerbox), nothing massive was said in the message, but it had a huge impact on me. The thought that my story was being told by this woman to others in this small rural town of NSW (I know it's being told overseas and in other far and strange places also) warmed my heart and woke me up, yes I know this drug will continue to make my emotions ou
My name is Lisa Magill and I have been navigating the minefield that is cancer since just months after turning 30, people have been saying to me for years that I should put my thoughts into writing and as time has progressed I thought I had left it too late, well here we are nearly 4 years in and for some unknown reason I've decided to start to write today.