For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. This seems to be my body’s guiding principle lately.
My weekend was a mixed bag. On Saturday I woke with the best intentions. I wanted to get breakfast and hit the home improvement stores in search of an appliance sale. My 2003 builder-grade stove was as basic as possible, and I definitely wanted to replace it before trying to sell my house. Since Seth moved in, I’ve been trying to save money by cooking dinner a few nights a week. I figured I might as well upgrade the stove now and enjoy it myself.
We hit a diner for breakfast then headed south to the Sears outlet in Delaware. Since I’m not an aspiring chef (most of my cooking involves pre-packaged dinners), I wasn’t looking for an advanced stove. I wanted an upgrade from what I had, but that wasn’t a high measure. My requirements: a window in the oven door, an interior light, and at least a few buttons on the panel so it didn’t look like a cheap stove.
When we arrived at the outlet, Seth assembled my transport chair and wheeled me up the long ramp and inside the warehouse. After a quick stroll through tool-land we made our way to the stoves. I quickly identified one that met my needs, and the price was right. We quickly discussed whether or not we should shop around looking for a better deal, but I was pretty sure we wouldn’t do better; I was also starting to not feel good. We made the purchase, waited at the loading dock, and then headed out.
Although we decided not to shop around for a better stove price (it turns out we got the best deal anyway), we still had reason to visit the home improvement stores. Since we don’t have a good Lowe’s near us, we decided it was best to stop at one in Delaware on our way home.
Once there I obtained an electric scooter, and Seth and I set out on our adventure. Normally I love a trip to Lowe’s or Home Depot. We can browse for an hour and ogle all the tools and holiday specials. But I was going downhill – and quick. By the time we were looking at medicine cabinets I thought I would fall off the scooter and onto the floor.
We wrapped up our essential errands and headed home. I took a percocet, turned on my heated mattress pad, and crawled into bed. I felt awful. Aside from the more definable symptoms of back pain and fever, I just felt terrible. I stayed in bed, whining and complaining, until 10am the following day.
Sunday I awoke and once again felt human. I had a suspicion that if I was to do anything productive, it had to happen immediately. After some breakfast, Seth and I met our friends at a tailgate party. It was good to see them, and we both had fun.
After a few hours, though, I hit a wall. I was feeling feverish, percocet was no longer controlling my back pain, and the indescribable ‘bad’ feeling was just around the corner. We said our goodbyes and headed home.
Once again, I took a percocet, turned on my heated mattress pad, and crawled into bed. But I was determined that wouldn’t be the end of my day. After napping for a few hours I forced myself out of bed and into presentable clothes. We had a very tasty dinner then quickly returned me to my bed.
The whole weekend was a real fight for what I wanted to do. Reflecting on it Sunday night, I declared victory. I pushed, and my body pushed back. But then I knowingly pushed again and braced for the backlash. I guess that’s part of dealing with cancer: knowing the consequences of your actions. It’s up to each person to decide how much backlash they can handle. And honestly, I appreciate even having a decision to make.