May – July 2015
“Long term hospital stay” – a term I would never have thought of before but here I was laying on a hospital bed, miles away from home, very sick and just wanted to get better, preferably the next day?!
After spending a night in the ICU, my doctor finally let me go into the normal ward. I didn’t know that this room in the ward would be my “home” for the next two months.
I was glued to my oxygen tube 24/7 for the next 3 weeks. I was weaker than ever and mixed with my ongoing steroid withdrawal syndrome, I was in hell.
My doctor assigned me to yet another physiotherapy to give me breathing exercises – funny isn’t it that all my life I never thought of something as natural as “breathing” and now suddenly I had to “learn” how to be breathe. The same went with walking. I couldn’t walk five paces without being out of breath.
At that time I also had tremors on both hands, a result from the steroids withdrawal, and I found it hard to play with my phone. So I gave up my phone for the next few months. I found it exhausting reading friend’s messages and replying the same story. Every time I wrote on the keyboard, I kept hitting the wrong letters because of the shaking and it frustrated me to no end. Plus the fact that I was in a lot of pain, diminished the need to socialize with others.
I just wanted to be alone to process all this pain. I needed time to understand and accept what had happened to my life.
The semi-good news was that I no longer had the back cramps, though my back was still hurting whenever I had to walk or sit for a long time. However, the cramping somehow moved to my rib cage. Every time I got up or laid down, it felt like my rib cage was about to snap any time. This pain too was the result of those little devils, steroids.
As of for my treatment, my doctor couldn’t give me another chemo because I was still suffering from pneumonia. So I had to be patient, wait until the pneumonia subsided. It seemed that waiting was the only thing I had to master for the time being, and I was not very good at it.
NOTE: Pneumonia is very common for cancer patients especially after chemo.