Up till the end of last year I was lucky enough to lead a relatively pain free life, so much so that pain was a fairly predictable indicator of progression for me. On a much anticipated trip with old friends last November I winced regularly as electric nerve pain in my chest suddenly lifted me out of it. I hated that I couldn’t hide it from them, it was clearly written all over my face and no amount of painkillers made a difference. I was expecting the absolute worse when I returned for my scan results in December, but was shocked and over the moon when I was still stable. Thank god after a couple weeks the intensity of that pain disappeared only to be replaced by a sharp lingering pain in my shoulders that made driving difficult. Shit what’s this now, my lungs, a fracture? Do I need to call someone, go to the hospital? I have never been prone to hypochondria ( know a few too many who were in my time), but cancer has changed all that.
My homecare nurse puts my mind at rest (ish), I have no temperature or shortness of breath, it’s the weekend and the hospital is on lockdown from the flu so we’ll sit this one out. Sure enough this pain eases off too and is replaced by another duller, but more consistent pain that more or less encompasses the upper right section of my torso, my shoulders, chest, upper back, right arm. Its been with me for weeks, is worse at night, keeping me awake cos I can’t get comfortable, last week hiccups nearly floored me with stabbing pain. Once again my scheduled scan shows no evidence of progression. It is fibrosis, nerve damage, peripheral damage from my spine, all typical, par for the course and not going anywhere. Fine grand, I can live with this, but what if I miss something because I become complacent, or I cry wolf once too often and they miss something. Jasus me nerves, calm down Kitty. Balance eh.