There is a pink spiral calendar notebook that lives on the kitchen table. It's where I keep track of my side effects and solutions and appointments and drugs.
It's really helpful, mostly because the process of writing down a symptom and solution makes it so much easier to remember what to do the next time that same symptom shows up.
And some of the side effects snuck up on me -- I didn't realize what they were till I looked at the notebook and saw the pattern.
Lately I have been wondering about the impact of expecting certain side effects to occur. I am not afraid that I can make them happen -- it is more like, I do not want to waste any time worrying about side effects that could happen again.
Yet, there is some value in planning ahead. It is a sort of balancing act, trying to be ready without worrying.
Here is what I mean. Last time I got Super Chemo, a few days passed and then I had two migraines and flu-like symptoms and spent 2.5 days in bed. That was my worst week yet. (The great thing is, my "worst week" was not that bad! I feel pretty lucky that chemo has not been very difficult at all and yet is killing the cancer. Thank God!)
Anyway, this Thursday, I am getting Super Chemo again. So, next Monday through Wednesday, I might feel lousy again. I have noticed that I am not agreeing to do anything extra (important meetings at work, dinner plans with friends) on those particular days.
I think it is smart to be ready in case those days are not good.
I just don't want to worry about it from now till then.
So if I catch myself worrying, I will just remind myself about my Significant Shrinkage and let myself be flooded with the inevitable JOY and RESOLVE that comes every time I visualize the tumors shrinking and smoking and whimpering under the onslaught of the chemo.
I am reminded of: "Hope for the best, plan for the worst, and expect nothing."