Sunday, July 29, 2007

Why Are You So Tired?


How tired can you be? Let me count the ways. I've been paying more attention to this topic lately.

1. Too Many White Blood Cells (aka leukocytosis) - A deep, cosmic fatique. Sleep is more attractive than sex, food, or any kind of entertainment. Night sweats sometimes interrupt that sleep. Which means extra laundry in the morning.

2. Not Enough Red Blood Cells (aka anemia) - You feel like you're wearing lead boots. The smallest muscle twitch is a workout that makes you breathe hard while your heart pounds. Digesting your dinner is hard work. Taking a shower can seem like an Iron Man triathlon. You're exhausted, but not really sleepy, and anyway sleep is difficult, due to the freight train in your ears (sound of your heart pumping harder to get the few remaining cells to circulate a little more.)

3. Your Body Is A Superfund Site (aka chemotherapy/radiation) - When the nurse tells you to protect the rest of your household from your bodily fluids, which are now carcinogenic - you gotta wonder . . . Everything tastes weird, smells weird, and feels weird. It's purple haze time.

4. If This Is Tuesday, This Must Be the Infusion Clinic (aka not enough hours in the day) - suddenly you have a calendar more complicated than a celebrity's, with 8 to 12 new drugs, all on different schedules; appointments with doctors, therapists, labs, clinics, and sometimes lawyers, banks, and insurance representatives.

5. Thinking Hurts. Can I Stop Now? (aka too much new information) - Like cramming for a test, in a foreign country, in a language you don't know, under a deadline you're not sure of, and if you flunk the test - the penalty is great bodily harm, or death. Just zoning out is a great, but feared, temptation.

6. I Don't Like this Cancer Game, Can I Go Home Now? (aka depression) - A zombie takes over your body. It just wants to sleep, when possible, or simply stare at the ceiling, while you remember the life you used to have.

7. The Combo Plate - pick any three of the previous items and throw in an infection, just to keep it interesting.

1 comment:

Janet said...

It really is a lot for Dave (and you) to bear...
For us, it is a fine line in wanting to be supportive and present but also very much not wanting to add to the fatigue burden by being there too often/too long! so please be candid with your friends. I'm sure none of us will have our feelings hurt by either a "come here" or "go away," and we don't want either of you to HAVE to "rise to the occasion."