You know nothing about my cancer journey was really what I expected. I thought treatment would be miserable, vomiting, frail, bed ridden; but, thankfully, I tolerated it really well. I never took one of those anti-nausea pills, I maintained my weight, my oncologist OKed road trips and plane rides, I rarely got sick with fevers. It was cake.
I thought I would be so eager to be done and back in the real world working and going back to school. At first, it was all going really well, I was really enthusiastic. I took a few classes that I was really interested in (rather than requirement classes) and really tried to ease my way in. By the end of the semester I was really struggling to finish. My focus sucked. My memory sucked. I took procrastination to a whole new level. (Level: I hope you're Harry Potter cuz you're really going to need magic to get this done in time). After that I decided I'd skip the next semester and focus on doing some freelance work. I thought maybe the academic setting was getting to me. But same story, I started out enthusiastic but fell apart. Sure, I've fallen apart before but nothing like this.
I can't help but compare my NOW with my BEFORE. I got straight A's, I was focused, over achieving, always finished my work and my memory was AWESOME. (Notice I didn't say anything about procrastination). Now I'm rarely done with my work on time, I've really let some people down and I tolerate mediocre work (blah). None of that used to fly.
I guess now I'm trying to figure out the WHYs and HOWs of it all. This is not what I was anticipating dealing with. It's really difficult. Part of it, I feel, is that I spent a huge chunk of my recent past doing nothing but cancer treatment and hospital visits, follow ups and CBCs which were all scheduled and regimented. All I really had to do was show up. So I'm having trouble taking back control of my life. I'm not sure how.
I feel like I don't read about this aspect of cancer often. What was your experience with the long term emotional/mental effects post treatment?