Thursday, October 28, 2010

Look Out!

I hate long breaks.

For some reason, and this is partly my own fault for thinking this way, I was under the impression that radiation therapy would happen immediately after chemo was over. As you can probably imagine, I was dead wrong. After nearly an entire month from the Final Confrontation, conversations (yes, conversations) about my radiation treatment has begun with the promise that I will begin getting zapped come Monday.

Things to note about rads:
  1. It needs a better name than that. I'm leaning toward "Radical Throwdown," but it's a work in progress
  2. To prepare you for getting bombarded with power beams, not unlike a certain Dr. Banner, one must be aligned on a table. Sounds kind of anticlimactic, right? Well, it is, and it takes two separate hospital visits for to get it right. I'm not even joking.
  3. Supposedly, they can get you in and out of the office within 30 minutes during sessions. Except when one of their machines is down; in which case it's anybody's guess.
  4. You get tattoos. Don't be alarmed: they're simply freckle-sized dots for table alignment. Having no previous ink on my body to begin with, this also felt anticlimactic because no tequila was involved. Ho hum.

And thus, the next phase has begun. The really good news is that it's only going to be 2.5 weeks of treatment (5 days/week) instead of the originally projected 4-6, which is all kinds of gravy.

The downside? Well, the effects of chemo are starting to wear off (which is nice), but I finally had to suck it up and shave my noggin a few weeks ago because I was starting to pull clumps of hair out of my head (unsightly!). Combine this with the fact that my eyebrows are now almost completely gone and imagine walking down the street. Or through your office. Or in your larger place of work as a whole. Nobody will recognize you. Now, I'm kind of an outgoing cat but when half of the people that you walk up and say hi to basically give you the "who the fuck is this guy" look, it get's a little awkward for them and off-putting to you. Nobody's to blame, here, but it almost makes me feel like it's less worthwhile to speak to anybody. That's a little conflicting for a guy that more or less talks to people for a living.

I guess this is what they mean by the psychological effects of treatment. Be sure to bring your copy of the DSM IV for our next meeting so we're all on the same page.