And So It Begins

Last night I heard the news.  I am MET positive. This means I am eligible for the clinical trial at Sloan, and I have decided I will do it.  I had hoped that I would not be eligible, that I could treat at home, at Karmanos, where the staff and the doctor surround me with care and love.  It would be so much more comforting to be at home, to sleep in my own bed after chemo, to have my friends around when I am being treated, then staying in a hotel in NY.  Although I suspected that I would be MET positive, and I thought I was ready for the news, when I heard, it hit me like a ton of bricks.  Since then, I have been very emotional, close to tears and or tearing up over and over.  I spent the night on the couch for the first time in a long while, because the stress of this really affected me.   Sleep was slow to come and not without a lot of interruptions last night.  When I showed up at yoga this morning, I immediately began crying as I told the news to my friends.  My teacher and friend, Kathy, made the practice all about healing, and played the healing mantra at the end. So sweet.

Part of my reaction is that reality is hitting me.  For six weeks I have felt great, have lived my life without any symptoms, have been strong and could even pretend at times that I did not have stage IV cancer.  I did my full primary and part intermediate series yesterday, feeling extremely strong and powerful. Today, because of my low-level anxiety, I did the short form at Karma, although as the practice went on, my strength returned.  Starting chemo is not only a reality check, but it does frighten me a bit.  While I do not plan to give in to that feeling, I know it will have some effect on me.  It is poison, after all. It kills good cells along with bad.  But I will not give in to that feeling that I am going to be sick.  I will be strong.  I will practice yoga.  I will meditate.  I will eat well.  I will rest when I feel tired and nurture myself. I have never been someone who gives in to sickness, who decides I am sick and feel awful. Instead, I picture myself healthy and well. If I am more tired, I will nap. If I feel nausea, I will take the drugs I was given. If I am not as vigorous at yoga, I will do it more slowly. I practice too quickly anyway, so this will teach me to be mindful, just as I am after an injury.

Alan and I leave for New York tomorrow morning, and return Sunday morning. Thursday I have baseline tests. Friday I do chemo.  Not sure yet what time, but am to hear today. Luckily for us, Charlie, Judy’s son, is a travel agent here, and was able to get us an amazing deal at the last-minute for flights and hotel. On Saturday, Alan and I will go to a museum, and will enjoy ourselves. At least now I have a path set going forward, know my schedule, and no longer am up in the air.  The chemo is a 10 course process, every three weeks, with scans every 12 weeks. In the future, we can actually plan our trips in advance, and not two days before. It is time to get started.  It is time to fully battle this beast. New York, here I come.

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4 thoughts on “And So It Begins

  1. Therese says:

    You have support and love surrounding you. You are awesome and strong. It’s completely normal to feel anxious and frightened. If you didn’t you wouldn’t be human. But, being human also means that you can make the choices you’re making- learning to adjust your practice, your sleep, your self care. You are an amazing person. Sending love to you, Alan, Sara and Alex.

  2. Susan Steinberg says:

    I wish we were closer to NYC, but please know we are here for you whatever we can do. Needless to say our home is open to you and your family anytime you need it. We certainly plan on getting together with you and Alan again when you r in NYC.
    You are in our thoughts and prayers.. Great blog!

  3. Holly Pisano says:

    It was a powerful and emotional class. And the healing mantra is so beautiful! Your yoga will serve you well in this process! Be strong Marilyn!

  4. Jennifer Savel says:

    Though there is so much more I want to say (and will later) for now I hope it is enough to say that all of the love and prayers and positive energy I have are being sent with you and Alan as you set off to New York on your battle. You have an army of devoted soldiers behind you ( myself included) and we stand ready to help you defeat this enemy.

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