Tag Archives: dying
Quote

“Death is not extinguishing the light; it is putting out the lamp because dawn has come.”

30 Sep
“The most important thing I know now that I didn’t know then is this: People who are dying are still living.”
Dr. David Kuhl

My Dream Made No Sense At All

25 Aug

I was dying from cancer. I was having a very weird conversation with Jim on the phone. My dad got diagnosed with colon cancer, so I kept following him everywhere, and he got annoyed. I dressed up like a ballerina and took pictures of myself and ‘how things used to be’ before I got cancer. Then, I was Stewie from Family Guy going down a slide that cost 50¢, but I paid $21. It was for people 11 years old and under. It spun you around in your thoughts. Then I was me again watching telemundo and univisión with my friend from high school. Then we talked about a bunch of people in music videos with lots of colors as I ate from a jar of peanut butter and jelly swirled together while in church. After that, my mom took a history of my cousin Crystal’s life from her before she died. Then my cousin Malcolm and I started flying in circles around the room higher and higher. I was trying to get higher than him because I’m slightly older. He’s much taller, though, and I scraped the ceiling, so it didn’t work. Then I circled so fast and I jumped awake. It was startling.

The night before, I forgot that I also dreamt that I was in a new house with my family. My room was really small and inside of my brother’s room. Then I explored it more and discovered it was huge with it’s own other bedrooms and luxurious bathrooms. Then it became a bed store. I had to run back to the original room before time ran out and I lost it forever. The bathroom was in my brother’s room. Every room was full of old baby stuff from the last family that lived there. It was all shoved to the sides of the rooms. The shower had carpet and no walls, so I felt weird in there.

I had another dream that I was at an expo, and I dressed up in my dobok to go back to a taekwondo and MMA competition. It was also an ice skating, hypnotism, and ribbon twirling competition. I wanted to compete, but hadn’t fought in a long time, so I couldn’t. We looked at some clothes and hair ties they were selling at the expo and my mom got into it with a lady at the scarf table. We looked at some clothes and then went to watch the matches. We saw some guys fighting tirelessly and they were still going when we left. We watched my friends compete, and we sat next to this lady who claimed she loved me since the day she gave birth to me as she clung to me during the hypnotism routine. my mom then explained the details of my birth. The woman’s daughter and the woman went to the parking lot with us and they left. My mom and I got in her rental car. She had forgotten to cap the exhaust pipes. On my passenger side, I had a steering wheel and what I thought were brakes, too. It was just a shortbread cookie can. There was bluetooth hookup for your pager. It was a kind of old car.

My last dream was that I was at the hospital working with my mom. I was following her all over the place. We tested my dad’s kidney function and his heart function. Then she got a phone call and had to leave. I saved some medicine for one of her patients in the medicine cabinet at the office. Then she took me with her, though I was supposed to go with my dad. We posed for pictures with a dog on a tennis court, then we went through the halls of the hospital. I started to samba dance, and we saw all of these people in costumes ready to do a dance competition. We went into Dr. Niambi’s office, which was huge as in my dream she was the ‘queen of my medical school’ and we talked to some ladies about their children. My mom asked me to leave, and then they discussed ‘adult matters.’ I came back, and was asked why. I said I missed them, and they all cooed. We were then all dressed up. Will Smith was talking and his kids were playing in her water fountain getting all dirty. My dad and I moved away from them and took Dr. Niambi’s microphones out of her call box. She came back and started to sing, so my dad and I ballroom danced. We put her microphones back, and then my mom went into her office to discuss her partner dropping her from the practice to see whose fault it was. Then I woke up.

Chemotherapy Today

18 Aug

 So, I had chemo today. It was kind of not a good experience, because I was already throwing up and feeling so weak last night that I couldn’t really make it to the bathroom. My aide came in the morning to help out and she took me to chemo, where I got lots of fluids. I keep getting so dehydrated. I don’t mean to let that happen, I just can’t keep anything down. I got a new medicine that should help me be able to eat, it came in the mail the other day, so hopefully that help with the dehydration, too.

I feel really weird that the nurses have to put on all this gear just to administer this medicine, and it’s going straight into my veins. Like, that can’t be safe, right? I don’t know how much hope I have that this trial is going to work. Certainly not as much as some of the people around me, but they have to have hope for me. It’s all they can do. And this is the last thing we’re trying, so everyone is kind of placing their eggs in one basket if you know what I mean.

I just want a chance to feel normal, and this trial can take up to a year. A year of this is certainly not going to be normal. Not even close. Maybe I’ll get used to it, and maybe the side effects will stop being so bad, but I have a feeling that as the toxicity builds up, it’ll be the other way around. I really want to be able to finish school, and I don’t know if that’s going to happen. I’m already feeling like I can’t do it. I’m already doubting myself. I’m also starting to feel like maybe I won’t make it to graduation, so maybe all of this is pointless. Maybe I’m just overthinking things, but I really don’t have anyone to talk to about these things. Not in person at least. I don’t have a lot of support here where I am, so it feels like I’m doing this by myself sometimes. That’s a really lonely feeling. I’m trying to push through, but there’s only so much I can do, and I don’t exactly know when it’s time to stop, but I don’t know if I will. How do you know something like that? I do want to stop. Kind of. I also don’t.I have been thinking about dying a lot. I’m scared that it will hurt. I’m scared that I’ll miss things. Important things. My brother just turned 18. He wants to go into the Marines, and then he wants to become a police officer. I wonder how much of that I’ll get to be a part of. It’s hard with this uncertainty always hanging over my head. I try to stay in the present, but how can I? I’ve been planning for my future my whole life, and now it might be taken away. That hurts. I’ve wanted to be a doctor for so long, but the process just takes so incredibly long, that I may not see the end of it. People keep suggesting alternative treatments and diets to me, or eating soursop and all of that, but I can’t even eat, I can’t change my diet much, because I can’t even figure out what stays down in the first place! My classmates are going out to eat, having parties, and doing all of this fun stuff, and I’m unable to participate in the majority of it. It just doesn’t seem fair. I know that life isn’t fair, but…you can’t help wanting it to be.

I should really get back to studying now. I have to study for microbiology, pharmacology, pathology, and I don’t think I have much to do for fundamentals of medicine, but I do want to see if I can get to reading some more of Robbins. It’s hard to do today. It’s hard to concentrate, because I’m just so tired, and I feel so sick to my stomach. I found out one of my friends from when I was younger got married and had a baby. She has two kids now. A lot of my friends are getting engaged, married, and having kids. I’m just sitting here having cancer. A lot of my classmates are getting engaged, too. I’m happy for them, but every time one of them gets engaged, it just reminds me of how lonely I am. I know I’m rambling, and the flow of this entry makes little sense, but that’s what I need right now. Just to vent in whatever way I want. Like I said before, I’m not a write. This isn’t article quality. Just some random thoughts of a sick student. I keep wishing life were different. I keep thinking how different they’d be if I were healthy right now. How good my grades would be, and how much easier it would be to make friends. Maybe I would even be asked on a date. Who knows. I can’t keep living in “what ifs.” It only makes things worse.

Again

27 Jul

Hi I’m again in the hospital since last night because seizures, nosebleed, and vomiting. I did not want to go, but my mom and brother insisted and took me. On the way they keep arguing about everything and that hurts my head. They always argue because they both like to be right. Since the hospital, I get there and get a CT scan with and without contrast to see the brain tumor. That is causing the ataxia, vomiting, and headaches. It grew a little but not much. I cannot do SRS on it so that I qualify for the clinical trial. God, it better work. It starts Aug 11 for me. My 1st cycle. Pray it goes well, please? Here at the hospital, they’ve been able more to control the seizures so I have different seizure medicine combination to go home with. I’m just very scared and I wonder how many times I can go home. I am being super candid right now: I do not want to die in a hospital. Please no. I mean if I do die, you know? There is a rush to fix everything but maybe the last time I know they cannot fix it how I like so I leave it broken and go to sleep. Just a thought. That thought is over now. The trial is back at school, so I will be back there again, but my daddy will visit often. I love him.

Days Like These Are the Loneliest

17 Apr

There’s a really long exam tomorrow, which means I’m here with nothing to do (except study, which I’m clearly not) and no one to talk to, because they’re all actually studying. All alone. And it’s beautiful outside. It’s always beautiful outside the day before an exam. The weather taunts me sometimes.

Friday makes one year since my friend died. That’s also the day my dad gets his PET scan to basically see if the treatment worked. That’s the day after my exam, so I feel like once it’s over, I still can’t even relax. Then, the following Wednesday, I have an Anatomy/Embryology miniboard exam. Nope…no relaxing for me. At first, I thought it might be good…take my mind off of the recent bad news that I received. But I still can’t stop thinking about it, so now I can’t even study. I’m probably going to fail this exam.

I don’t know what to do, and I’m just feeling really lonely. I know I should be studying like everyone else, but I feel really mentally fatigued, and my classmates don’t get it. I mean I’m glad they don’t have to understand, but still…they don’t understand. My friend that died last April…she would have understood perfectly, I’m sure. She’s pretty much the reason I don’t give up completely.

9 Months

19 Jan

It’s been 9 months since you died, but I don’t go a day without thinking of you. NGUNS!

Keep Calm and Enjoy 2013

7 Jan

I’ve been thinking about my own mortality a lot recently. Not to be dark and gloomy or anything, but I’m a little scared. I’m sitting here, core body temperature nearly high enough to boil water (kind of an exaggeration), and I realize…I have a serious illness that could kill me. I could die. I could be dead soon. These thoughts start repeating over and over in my head in a variety of different grammatical constructs, but I’ll spare you the superfluousness. Now, this is not the first time I’ve realized this or had these thoughts, but after so many tests, procedures, surgeries, and treatments, those thoughts can fade into the background and randomly resurface on nights like these.

IMG_5498 IMG_5505

I have been really stressed out and depressed lately, but thinking back…in my short 22 years of life, the vast majority of them were wonderful and amazing. The ones that weren’t so much so (2012, if we’re naming names) had their amazing parts, as well. I’ve had a very blessed life up to this point. Last year, I graduated college and was accepted into medical school. That’s huge! That’s been my dream for as long as I can consciously remember (NOT an exaggeration).

I talked to my mom today, and she reminded me that a lot of people get depressed this time of year. She’s right. She suggested some things that I do, and her suggestions are always very good. I should take them, but will I? I’m not sure. It depends on how motivated I feel towards doing anything at all.

I talked to a friend of mine, and she pointed out that no one knows how long they have. That seems so obvious now, but it’s something I never really thought about, I guess. I mean, unless you have some kind of life shaking event happen to you or someone close to you, most people tend to take it for granted that tomorrow they’ll wake up and jump right into the daily grind. Anything could happen to anyone at any time, I just get slapped in the face with reminders of my own mortality more frequently, that’s all.

Life is really short. I’ve been really angry and upset about what’s going on in my life right now, and I still am, but right now…in this moment…I can actually have some perspective and focus on all the things that have gone right. There are so many more of those that it just doesn’t seem fair to discount any year as a loss, really. Even though 2013 has not gotten off to a good start by any means, I’m still here to experience it, and that’s half the battle, I guess. I’ll see where this crazy life of mine takes me next.

“What a weary time those years were — to have the desire and the need to live but not the ability.”

2 Jan

I found out that my Aunt’s breast cancer came back, and I also found out that my friend’s little brother’s cancer came back in his shoulder. He has osteosarcoma. It’s like everywhere I look it’s freaking cancer, and it won’t leave me, or anyone else alone. Usually I can have a pretty good attitude about stuff like this, or at least an okay one, but seriously, this is becoming just too much. Sometimes I can pretend to be okay long enough to fool myself into thinking that it doesn’t really bother me, but that’s really not working anymore. I have a therapist and social worker and everything to talk to, but I feel like they’re just frustrating me now. They’re saying all the textbook things to say, but they’ve never had cancer. I mean I would never wish for them to or anything, but I feel like they don’t get it. And I know that I’m going to die, I know what stage IV metastatic RCC means…I see the people at the weekly infusions slowly stop coming, or the people that I talk to at support groups or at the infusion center die, and I just have to wonder when that will be me. I’m feeling really discouraged. Like what’s the point in even trying if I know what’s going to happen? I’m lonely here anyways. I just want all of this to be over. Like now.

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RIP, Ricky

19 Dec

You had balls, dude. Love you.