Thursday, March 11, 2010

hitting the wall

I have lymphedema, specifically stage 1 truncal lymphedema. I’ve been evaluated and had some physical therapy sessions with many more to come. There is no cure for lymphedema, only management of the swelling – sometimes the swelling can be reversible if caught early, but the lymphedema itself is a chronic condition that is potentially disfiguring and will require lifelong managing.

And that sucks.

Every day I cry. Every day. My depression is presently at a level similar to when I was first diagnosed with breast cancer…similar to the dark days I experienced right after my mastectomy. There are some portions of this journey I have managed to take in stride but this is not one of them at the moment.

Once my initial shock at being diagnosed with breast cancer wore off my innate desire, my goal if you will, was to do everything I could to get thru all the various components of treatment as unscathed as possible and come out on some sort of “other side” – to go back to a semblance of my former, normal life.

With the onset of lymphedema, on top of some of the other obstacles I’ve already faced, I’m realizing now that is not going to happen exactly as I hoped, it just can’t.

Cancer changes everything.

I’m not saying there won’t be a new normal. I will get past this eventually. Adaptation is the greatest gift we humans possess bar none. In fact as a woman without religion I’m often asked what it is I do have faith in and that’s it in a nutshell – our utterly miraculous ability to adapt, to transcend.

But I’m not there yet.

I was very touched by the amazing support I got from my last entry, knowing that so many of you understand where I’m coming from whether you have walked this exact road or not. There is a universal component to suffering; we’ve all had our challenges and had to work to overcome them. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your compassion. Keep it coming, I need all that I can get.

Till next time, thanks for reading…


The Small Fabric Of My Life said...

Kayleigh - I can't begin to imagine what you are going through but I hear that this blog is a safe place for you to rage against the unfairness. Keep raging.

PamelaTrounstine said...

Only those who go into battle receive the scars. Battle on, mom. Battle on!

Brenda said...

Oh Kayleigh, I can only imagine how you feel, but I have talked to lots of other women with lymphedema and they have found ways to manage it. I'm sure you will too. At this point in your treatment, I'm sure that everything feels overwhelming.

But I can tell that you are a survivor!

Jean said...

I can't put myself in your place, but I know if I did I would handle it with much less grace and courage than you. Keep on keeping on, and remember that people are praying for things to improve for you. X

Sheila said...

Oh, sweetie, I'm so sorry to hear that. You are doing so well at being strong - keep it up. You know we're all thinking of you.

Best good vibes...*hug*

Shallow Coffee said...

Prayers as always. Love you so much!

Soundly Vegan said...

You never know whose lives you're going to touch in the course of a day. It seems that I have touched yours recently and now, well, now you have most definitely touched mine. My thoughts are with you Kayleigh.

Warm Regards,


Nishant said...

I'm so sorry to hear that. You are doing so well at being strong
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