Sunday, 12 June 2011

The First 48 Hours

I was told that I when I wake up, the day after chemo, I would feel like I was hit by a bus. Let me tell you that when my eyes hesitantly opened at five in the morning I was absolutely shocked that I felt...good. Better than good. The husband had set his alarm for 5.30am knowing that it would take him that long to get breakfast going and the children ready before he left for work. In the husband's defence let me just add here that, our change to Paleo eating means that every morning we have a cooked breakfast. This always includes fry pans, eggs and lots of mess in the kitchen. I rolled over and told him that I would be doing breakfast.

While I definitely cannot complain about my lot, I was feeling a lot more tired than usual. Organising breakfast got me pretty tired. Getting enough energy to do lunch was tough. The reality though was that at no point on Day 1 was I bedridden! That was the biggest bonus ever! Of course, I didn't do it on my own. And, just in case you're wondering, the husband didn't ditch me that day. I was left in the care of my two mums who helped out a great deal with the children. To top, a mostly good day off, a delicious meal was delivered to our door by a dear friend, it was the second meal in a row that she had brought us!

I guess, as a mum, the greatest concern for me, at this time, was that my two children didn't just become unstimulated zombies. Keeping them occupied, learning and having fun has always been a priority for each day. Now it seemed as though I wasn't going to be able to maintain such a high level of activity with them. This had really bugged me while I was recovering from the lumpectomy. Only a few weeks on however, I had made some progress in that area. And, if you don't mind, I'd like to share what I think I am beginning to understand.

Being a mum is a great occupation. Being an actively involved mum is very rewarding. But I really had begun to place far too much emphasis on my need to DO things. I think I am starting to grasp that I can be a super, terrific mum even in those moments when I am too tired to do anything but watch the children play. In those moments when I can barely call out an encouragement I can still be a good mum. In fact, all that is needed to be a good mum, is love. Believe me, when the time comes for me to be able to play all the pretend games, to run to the shops and dance around to the latest hit I will be doing it. But, I reckon I needed to come to a place where I saw that when all that is stripped away, being a mum is all about demonstrating love.

So, I made it through Day 1 unscathed. Day 2 was much the same. I took my drugs as prescribed. These were to ward off the nausea and vomiting so commonly associated with chemo. I ate my prunes (you know the reason why) and enjoyed another relatively good day.

Of course, having two mums (my mum and the husband's mum just in case you were wondering...) is a great advantage. They played tag team and were an ever present help. Certainly the stars of the show. Thank you so much for all your help. And, of course, as I mentioned earlier we really did just have so much support around us. Thanks. And to quote child number one's favourite show, "Grandpa in my pocket", and let's face it I love it too, high fives all around, "Team work!"

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