Brenè Brown would understand

Brenè Brown would understand

Dare I say this was a better week? 

After speaking with the chemotherapy oncologist, she thinks Brian may have had a slight illness/infection week one because of the fever and extreme exhaustion. Because this week Brian has been tired, but still present. Still had some energy. Wasn’t in bed 24/7. 

Whatever week one was, I hope it was an anomaly. 

With Brian feeling a bit better, I’d say the effects of cancer on the rest of the family blazed front and center. 

Initially, Brian was miserable and seriously on a limited word/thought count. There were a lot of things left unsaid about what was happening that week and those upcoming. There were lack of communication issues and process questions I had about keeping life rolling for Ella and I. There were things I didn’t know I was mad about until a parallel issues was raised. 

I felt a lot of guilt. I didn’t want him to know about my frustrations. Usher in negative energy. Sound incompetent. 

When you are the caregiver, you want to make everything easier, no matter how hard it is on you personally. So I felt I crossed a line when my emotions boiled over with things I hadn’t told my husband. Up until this point, I always told him what was on my mind. Now, all of a sudden, I’m holding onto frustrations/concerns, wanting him to focus on healing and surrounded by positive energy.  

It felt like I was failing my family by talking about an issue I couldn’t solve alone. I felt shame. 

I’m in my first year in this family. Ella is a junior and how we proceed parenting her during this time needs to be Brian’s lead. I’m a parent. I know what to do. But Ella is a wonderful kid that’s never been parented by a personality like mine and I’ve not had a teen like her (well, my sweet son and Ella are quite a bit alike, but also very different). 

So this week was difficult as we worked though what happened when he was down and how we go forward. How I communicate with him even on his horrible days. How I can’t shelter him from everyday life. What I can do for myself to relax and recharge without feeling guilty. Brian always advocates for me to get out of the house, but my tribe is in Dallas. I’m already tired. So how much do I want to recharge with my people, versus lay down on the couch or go swim, the pool being my sacred place. 

Realities: 

  • Brian just completed his third chemotherapy. Hopefully he reacts the same as last week. 
  • He has 19 more of 30 rads, completing this phase of treatment on January 31. 
  • Radiation side effects are beginning, so we don’t know what all will be involved. For now he’s referring to it as his throat being sunburnt, with some  difficulty swallowing and heartburn type symptoms. A magic medication is on the way Monday. 
  • Just three chemos left!

With all of this in mind, I’m moving forward knowing I’m not perfect. I will never live up to my outrageous personal expectations. But I’ll keep communicating, we’ll do this together. And that is enough.

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