Belinda Carlisle cured my hot flashes!!

Because I’m obsessed with The Go-Go’s I have my google alerts set to send me any articles that pop up on the band.  :)

When I saw this headline in my inbox I thought it was a joke: “A magnet in my underwear cured my hot flashes: Belinda Carlisle says she’s found a menopause miracle.”

sidebar-banner-bottomI read the article and tweeted Belinda and asked if the article was for real or not.

She graciously answered back and told me that it worked wonders and would change my life … When Belinda tells you to do something you do it – so I ran down to my local Rexall and got one. :)

You should have seen the cashiers face when she asked me what I was buying and I explained that it was a magnet for my underwear to help with hot flashes. Ha ha.

The Lady Care magnet is purple and sparkly YESSSS! (You all know how much I love tiny things that are purple). I really didn’t think it was going to work but I wore it to bed that first night (you have to wear it 24 hours a day) and I slept through the night. Not one single hot flash. FOR REAL!

The magnet is low-profile and you place it about 4 inches below your belly button. The magnet is STRONG so you don’t have to worry about it falling off. Unless you’re wearing a tight dress that shows off your vagina – nobody will know you’re wearing it.

I’ve been wearing it for a couple/three weeks now and my hot flashes have reduced considerably!! I was having 6-10 major hot flashes a day (and all night). Now I maybe have 1-2 small ones and tiny heat surges but not like the full on hot-flashes I was having before.

Crazy right? So crazy … Thank you Belinda.  :)

Posted in Go Vegan! | 7 Comments

What a birthday …

10522863_719912474736585_1369040718_nI had an amazing birthday!

Gerry asked me what I wanted to do for my birthday and I said “FLOAT!”

He took the day off of work and we spent the whole day together.

First we had a lazy morning and then we took Fergus for a nice walk from our house to Government House. We wandered around the grounds and spent some time in the beautiful rose garden.

We got home and dropped off Fergus. He was pooped out and didn’t mind when we left to go for lunch.  :)

We had a lovely lunch at Be Love and then wandered over to FLOAT House to float for 90min in a sensory deprivation tank.

928293_297114037125083_1392387791_nI’ve never ever floated before and even though I had a little anxiety about being trapped in a pod for 90 minutes … I still wanted to try it.

FLOAT House is just up from China Town on Herald Street and when you walk inside it’s very zen. The pod is filled with salt water and it’s more buoyant then the Dead Sea.

You climb inside. Pull the lid down. Turn off the lights and float. Yikes!

It was pretty challenging. First you have to get used to the floating … You don’t have to support your body in any way … and that takes a little while to get used to. The pod is blacked out but you can turn the light on and off if you want. I kept the light on until I was comfortable … Honestly I spent the first 20 minutes trying not to freak out. Ha ha.

After I while I started to settle down and floated. I couldn’t tell you what I thought about but I had a lot of thoughts. I could also hear my bowels moving. It was crazy. I can’t wait to float again. I think the next time will be easier because it won’t be weird. I’ll know how everything works and how to relax my body and float.

All that silence was a little much for me and at this point I’m not ready for that much thinking. Music always helps me float away and so I’ll try it next time with some music.

I felt AMAZING after. Super relaxed. Heavy. You know that feeling you have after you get off a trampoline? Or after you take off your roller-skates. Like that.

924417_762111280478464_1924649365_nWhen we got home from floating I checked my store to see if I had sold anything during my birthday sale and holy shit … you guys went nuts.  :)

I spent the next 3 days filling orders. Thank you so much for helping me get rid of my Sarah’s Place stock.

You guys are the best. Best. Birthday. Ever.

 

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Happy Birthday to Me!

It’s my birthday!! This time last year I was so sick from chemo that I totally forgot about my birthday. How sad is that?  :(

Because my treatment was so intensive – I also closed my boutique Sarah’s Place. It was a heartbreaking decision to close the store but I’m glad I did it. I packed everything up and put it into storage and focused on getting through my cancer treatment.

Well a year later – I made it through all my cancer treatment – and I am so grateful to be here to talk about it. :)

-1I’ve slowly been pulling items out of storage and putting them for sale in in the online store. My guest room is PACKED to the rafters with stock that we barely have room to move SO I’M HAVING A SALE!!

I’m turning 46 this year so to celebrate everything in the store is 46% off.

Just use the code HAPPYBIRTHDAYSARAH and your discount will be applied during checkout.

If you’ve ever daydreamed about buying a Bernie Dexter dress or buying a Herbivore shirt – All 46% off. You can make this birthday girl very happy by helping me reduce my stock. Visit the store HERE.

Thank you for your continued support.  :)
Love you guys.
xoxo
SARAH

 

 

Posted in Go Vegan! | 8 Comments

Toronto

It’s been about a month or more since I started weaning myself off of Ativan and I have gone down from 2mg to 1mg and now I’m working on getting down to .5mg. It hasn’t been easy but my pharmacist has been great at coming up with a slow-taper program for me.

10467946_1544570389103765_1488079178_nGoing from 1mg t0 .5 has been the hardest. I don’t know why but it’s been really brutal. I have lots of extra anxiety, bad nights sleeps which make me exhausted during the day, full body tremors while I sleep that make me wake up terrified.

I also have claw hands. Maybe not their official term but that’s what I call them. :)

If I lay still for an hour or more (like when I nap or sleep) I wake up and my hands are like stiff claws. I can’t move my fingers and they feel paralyzed. I have to slowly wiggle them and after a few minutes they warm up and I am able to use them again.

Same with my feet. I have to be careful when I get up because I lose my balance and they don’t work well until they warm up. My feet are sore all the time and you know it’s bad because I’ve only been wear my running shoes and none of my other shoes. Ha ha.  :)

I think it’s either left-over from the Tamoxifen or perhaps from the chemo. Either way it’s uncomfortable. I’ve spoken to my naturopath and he has me taking a myriad of things to help. I have a meeting with my Oncologist in a few weeks.

She doesn’t understand why I’m still in pain. I keep telling her I’m sensitive to medications. You’d think after dealing with me all year and all my reactions to medications that she’d start to understand.

So I’ve been dealing with “claw hands” as well as all the side effects of getting off of Ativan but I’m happy to say that as of this week I am almost at .5mg. It’s been rough but I feel good about getting off it it.

I’ve been very gentle with myself lately. I am only doing things that make me feel good. Yoga. Swimming. Hanging out with Fergus and Gerry.

I’ve been doing to Physio once a week to get my arm back in shape. I go for MLD massage every two weeks to help with the Lymphedema in my arm. I am taking part in a study at the Cancer Center about Restorative Yoga and fatigue.

I was taking part in a study about Stress, PTSD and cancer treatment but I had to bow out after 2 sessions. I am too sensitive right now … hearing other woman’s stories about their treatment was so difficult. I could feel myself taking on their trauma and I was having nightmares and coming home sobbing. I decided it wasn’t the right time yet to work on this.

I’m reducing the Ativan. I’m working on my fitness. I’m doing deep exhausting work on my arm. That’s enough for now. I only want to fill the rest of my time with things that bring me joy.

So I hopped a plane and went to Toronto!! WHAT?

I talked to one of the nurses at the Cancer Center and talked to her about whether or not I was healthy enough to fly. She was like “You’re not in active treatment. Get out of here. Go.”

I was REALLY nervous. Other then a few minor trips to Vancouver to see family I haven’t been away from home in 1.5 years. I hear it all the time from my ladies in all my cancer groups. Everyone is afraid to leave home. Cancer treatments makes your world-view really small. I go from my house to the Cancer Center and a few errands around town. I haven’t felt like I could travel anywhere because I was afraid something would happen to me.

10387969_325538947596917_537258777_nI was laying in bed one afternoon when I got a text from my best-besty in Toronto and my heart was aching to see her. So when Gerry got home from work we looked to see if we had enough points for me to fly out and we did. I booked it that night and left the next week. :)

Spending time with my Toronto friends was the tonic I needed. It was so great to go and just be me. Not be a cancer patient. Just be me. JUST ME! Oh god it was lovely.

I really only saw Shoshana (and family) and Jen (and family). No offence to anyone that I didn’t get a chance to see but this trip was a baby-step for me and I needed to keep it super mellow.

And of course we ate our faces off!

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Jen and I devoured donuts from TBC Vegan Bakery. I actually danced a jig after I ate my donut.

We went to Hot Beans and had a Macaroni and #Vegan cheese with potato burrito. I fell into a food coma immediately. It was so good.  :)

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We also went to Grasslands for brunch and I had Snickerdoodle French Toast.

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And of course I went to Bunners for Cinnamon Buns. I put a bite in my mouth and yelled “CINNAMON BUN” and then teared up with joy. I think my tastebuds are coming back. :)

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Also went to FRESH and ate my face off.

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But this wasn’t just in one day… This was spread out over a week. ha ha. Judging from my chin rolls – I’m pretty sure I gained 10lbs. :)

We also hung out in Shoshana’s kitchen a lot. That’s where we always seem to spend the most time. Hanging out with her is always amazing because we’ve known each other for over 40 years so it’s kind of like we’re speaking another language sometimes.

She just “gets me”. How precious is it to have that in your life? It’s wonderful.

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One night we had a “make your own sushi” party. I found a sushi rice cube maker for her son Henry and we had a gay old time sitting outside on the deck making sushi.

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Oh yeah! I also got to see The Monkey Bunch perform at an elementary school fundraiser. It was so fun.

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My last day in Toronto I had a mini-meltdown. I was explaining to Shoshana and Mo about my upcoming visit with the oncologist and that we’re trying to decide what to do next. Do I continue trying different medications (that help reduce my risk of recurrence) or just stop because they all have the side-effect of joint pain and we know that the chemo made me flare up and the Tamoxifen almost killed me.

It’s a really tough, scary decision to make. I want to feel like I’ve done everything I can to make sure I don’t have a recurrence … but I also don’t want to put my body through any more trauma. I cut out the cancer. I poisoned it with chemo. I radiated it with radiation and then I took Tamoxifen and everything fell apart.

It’s a big decision. It’s scary to say no to something they recommend and it weighs heavy in my heart. It was good to talk about it with them …

Then I flew home and got my face tattoo’d. Ha ha.

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Sometimes the smallest tattoo makes you feel like a superstar. :) It was a fantastic trip. It gave me some of my mojo back. I’m so happy I went.

OH YEAH! I almost forgot … when you have Lymphedema and you fly/travel/drag a suitcase behind you – you have to be careful because it can cause more swelling in your arm. I wore my beautiful Music City compression sleeve and gauntlet that I got from Lymphedivas.

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It makes me want to get my hands tattoo’d. Uh oh …  ;)

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Drone on the Farm: An Aerial Exposé

Photographer Mishka Henner documented factory farm pollution—like this waste lagoon at a Texas feedlot—by satellite. What else could drone photography uncover?

Photo of factory farm pollution by Mishka Henner

The brilliant Will Potter from Green is the new Red has a new Kickstarter campaign called: Drone on the Farm: An Aerial Exposé.

Factory farms clearly have something to hide. That’s why “ag-gag” laws, which make it illegal to photograph or film farms and slaughterhouses, are spreading internationally. But the best way to combat such secrecy is with sunlight.

Will will be using drones to take aerial photographs of factory farms. Check out all the details on his Kickstarter!

Please consider helping Will with his kickstarter. With your help, He’ll be able to use new investigative journalism tools to expose what some corporations want to keep hidden.

While you’re at it … watch this short 4 minute TED video with Will. He’s the real deal.
Go Will go! :)

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LympheDIVAs!

When I was diagnosed with my breast cancer I thought “They’ll cut it out. I’ll do chemo/radiation and I’ll be done with it.” What I didn’t consider was the toll all the cancer treatment would have on my body so when I was diagnosed with Lymphedema it was pretty shocking.

I am very lucky. The Lymphedema in my right arm is small and manageable. I am going to see a massage therapist for MLD massage. I’ve also started seeing a physiotherapist to help me get strength back in my arm and right shoulder. I also wear a compression sleeve.

The government issue sleeve I have to wear every day is pretty uncomfortable. I had to special order a black one (this punk rock girl does not wear beige) and it’s not super comfortable. It pinches the crook of my arm. It’s made of a catchy material and so when you wear clothing over top it makes your clothes bunch up. It’s like hardcore spanx for your arm. Have you ever had a hotflash in spanx? Not cute. :( 10261229_702892746419576_1454833687_n

In utter frustration I hit The Google looking for an alternative and found the LympheDIVA’s website.

I couldn’t believe what I saw – so many beautiful sleeves to choose from. I love it when function and fashion come together! :)

I immediately purchased a leopard sleeve and they’re wonderful. Soft. A little silky so they slip easily underneath clothing.

It’s incredibly empowering to have choices and that’s what LympheDIVA’s is offering. Beautiful, bold fashion-forward choices.

I have had people stop me on the street to ask me about my sleeve. So many people think it’s part of my outfit. I used to be a shoe-addict but I think I’ve become a sleeve addict. I can’t wait to get more!! :)

Y055UQrSNngxl8Hv3TyGQBzZ-irPgs6FVdPgR75D2YeCVST0VNudVT7yUCvgZRhEiO6TPUN2lbgj64HxLXgBENES9MrCAc6cLZLWEMQKs2I2FGCCP96M51uI0RQns5kjB32y3Tlj4g30Jgywfz4yGBDLCmIbyvBSt_F32A=s0-d-e1-ftIf you’re thinking about getting a sleeve  LympheDIVA’s has a special sleeve on sale right now to benefit of the National Women’s Survivors Convention. $10 from each sleeve and $5 from each gauntlet will be donated back to this wonderful organization. Learn more about NWSC here.

The two-sided Music City design features a microphone on one side and a guitar and the NWSC logo on the other. Super cool!

AHHHH! I am so happy to have found them.  :) Thank you LympheDIVA’s!

 

Posted in Go Vegan! | 6 Comments

Dwight

What a weird month …

My doctor wants me to stop taking Ativan. I’ve been taking 2mg every night since the breast cancer diagnosis to help me sleep. It’s been VERY helpful. It completely turns off my manic “am I going to die” hamster wheel in my brain and gives me a full 7 hours of sleep.

I don’t think I would have been able to get through all this cancer treatment without having a good nights sleep every night. I’ve never slept so well in my life. I’m not a great sleeper and Ativan has made me realize how poorly I was sleeping pre-cancer.

Now that I’m “post-treatment” my doctor wants me to stop taking Ativan. It’s not for long-term use. My doc gave me sleeping pills and said “stop taking your Ativan and use these instead.

I took a sleeping pill that night and woke up at 3am having a FULL BLOWN panic attack. I woke up and my entire body was shaking. Gerry thought we were having an earthquake but it was my body quivering so hard that it was shaking the bed. My heart was pounding. I was sweating and terrified. I reached over for Fergus and was convinced he was dead. I reached over for Gerry and couldn’t feel him in the bed. I sat up and started sobbing.

Gerry woke up and turned on the light and through sobs I told him what was happening. He shoved an Ativan in my mouth and 3 minutes later I was back to sleep.

In the morning Gerry got up and googled Ativan withdrawal. Guess what?? You’re not supposed to stop taking Ativan cold turkey. You need to slowly wean yourself off… fucking doctors.  :(

I talked to a friend of mine who had to wean herself off of Oxy and she told me to go talk to my pharmacist for help. So I called my pharmacy and made an appointment to talk about the Ativan. She confirmed to me what we had learned on Google about Ativan withdrawl. You can’t just stop cold turkey. Ugh. fucking doctors.  :(

She made a “schedule” for me to slowly taper off. It’s a month long program … and she said that I might find it too quick but that we could work with how I’m feeling.

It’s been rough but I’m determined to get off Ativan. I’ve been slowly tapering and I’ve gone from 2mg a night and now I am on .5mg but I feel like this last bit is going to be the most difficult. I’m super raw right now. Not getting enough sleep makes me feel awful. Like I can’t cope. :(

But I’ve had a nice distraction at the same time … my friend Mason (who works at Tattoo Zoo) went away for 3 weeks and asked if I could take care of his 4lb chihuahua Dwight. I was like “HELLS YES” and I ran over to his house to grab the dog. Dwight is a delight. :)

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I’ve been been a little obsessed with Dwight and my instagram feed reflects my obsession. Ha ha. Nothing like a little tiny dog to keep your mind busy while you detox from Ativan.

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Fergus has been pretty nonplussed about Dwight. He is such a chilled out and confidant dog. He is not worried about Dwight. He knows that the more animals I have around me … the happier I am.

I gave Dwight back to Mason today. It was so nice to see them reunited but I am truthfully a little sad. That little guy wormed into my heart with his perfect amount of neediness and his love of snuggling. Love that little guy. :)

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In other news I’ve been focusing on doing things that help rejuvenate my body/mind/spirit. Gerry and I have been doing yoga 3x a week at the Y. Almost all the pain from the tamoxifen is out of my system and I’ve been taking Dwight and Fergus to the beach almost every day. Little by little. Day by day I am starting to feel more and more like myself again.

I’ve been talking to a councilor at the Cancer Center about my anxiety. We are working on a plan to help combat my hamster wheel brain (I love a plan).

I am really focusing on self-care. I don’t get involved in anything that drains my energy. I’ve been meditating. I’ve been chanting. I listen to guided meditations before bed. I take melatonin. I do yoga. I walk. I journal. I go to therapy. I talk to my loved ones about how I’m feeling … and yet my brain spins out of control at night.

I’d love to hear what you guys do to help with an uncontrollable hamster-wheel brain? Any tips or tricks?

Posted in Go Vegan! | 42 Comments

Secret Tattoo Shop

It’s been a crazy couple of weeks … we moved Tattoo Zoo to a new location at 826 Fort Street. WHAT?? When/How/What?

I know. It’s a shocker. :) I’ve been keeping this secret since January and it’s been killing me not to share. Ha ha.

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Gerry and I have been casually looking for a new location for TZ for a while. Wharf Street rent is CRAZY expensive and we can’t keep up with it. Plus if you included the lack of tourists walking down that street because of the construction going on with the Blue Bridge … and the fact that the city also ripped up Wharf/Yates/Johnson street to replace the sewage pipes. Forgetaboutit. It’s a frickin ghost town down there.

And while we know the construction is temporary … it’s not the only reason we wanted to move. Gerry and I have had a ROUGH year and what we’ve realized is that we want a simpler/easier lifestyle. We work hard. Too hard. With this move – we have simmered down the vegetable stock a little. It’s less liquid to manage and has a deeper flavour. Ya know what I mean?? :)

We’ve been searching all over downtown Victoria for the perfect place and our prayers were answered!! As soon as we walked through the doors of 826 – we knew we found our new location.

I was feeling pretty good at the beginning of Jan when we viewed it and signed the lease. I was healing and getting stronger after finishing radiation. We had NO idea that the Tamoxifen was going to be so difficult on me. We thought I would be able to help Gerry put the new shop together but the Tamoxifen laid me flat on my ass and I was barely able to walk – let alone wield a paintbrush. I was heartbroken.

1516818_1426003994320749_1649724997_nThis is the part of the story where our amazing friends come in to help …

Everyone pitched in and helped us fix up the shop and get it ready. We could not have done it without their help and we will be forever grateful.

There are not enough words to say thank you. So we took everyone out for Sushi. :)

I get teary when I think about how little I was able to help with the construction when normally I’m up to my elbows in renovations. It was a real test for me to sit back and delegate. I wasn’t very good at it to be honest. Ha ha. I cried a lot because I was so incapacitated by the Tamox.

During all of this renovation we went to see my Oncologist and talked about the Tamoxifen. She agrees that I can’t take it. It is not the medication for me – so I am taking a “medication holiday” again … only this time for 3 months. I need time to heal and detox from the Tamox.

So I stopped taking Tamoxifen and 4-5 days later I started to feel like myself again. It was like I had woken up from a coma. Clear headed and with the pain subsiding I was able to find the energy to help Gerry get all the last touches done to TZ before the big move.

And then more wonderful friends stepped in to help…f0ed4cf4c37811e394da0002c9c7c4aa_8

We packed up TZ in less than an hour and had everything moved to the new location and moved in by 1pm. It was a great team effort. I love my tattoo family!!

It was really weird standing in the empty shop that Gerry and I have worked in for almost 15 years. That’s a long f-ing time. Nobody will ever understand how much blood sweat and tears we put into that place. I didn’t think I would get emotional about it but I shed a little tear saying goodbye to the old spot.

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But the tears didn’t last long because Kramers only move forward. We don’t look back!! :)

And our new shop is AMAZING!!

We know we’re in the right place because on opening day it felt like we have been in this location forever. It feels like home in a way we were never able to achieve in the old location.

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Plus it’s located on one of the coolest/busiest streets in Victoria. Our address at 826 Fort Street is right in the thick of it. There is food, shopping and so much community in the cross street of Fort/Blanshard. It’s exciting.

Even though I don’t technically work there – the new TZ location has a few “Sarah” touches throughout such as the Twin Peaks floor in the back room. I hope David Lynch approves.  :)

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There’s also a secret garden through the back. We are the only ones who have access to it and my plan is to fix it up this summer and have it be a nice place to hang out while you wait to get your tattoo.

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One of my favourite features is the huge skylight in the middle of the shop. That’s where we decided to put the library/drawing table. So now all the artists congregate there when they’re drawing/painting. It’s really cool.

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We had our friend Chris Dobell come and hand-paint the windows. He is an amazing talented sign painter and he did SUCH a good job. I’m not sure if you can see it from the photos but the shiny parts in the lettering are copper-leaf. It’s gorgeous!

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My favourite part about the new tattoo shop location is how it’s given Gerry his groove back. It’s been a hellish year and this mitzvah has shifted everything. There is a lot more smiling at the Kramer house. It’s good. It feels good.  :)

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I am so thankful to all our friends who pitched in to help. Thankful to all of our clientelle who came running to see the new shop to book an appointment for a tattoo. And to our artists who make beautiful tattoos for us every day.

We. Are. Stoked.

Posted in Go Vegan! | 15 Comments

Vega Fueled!!

-1Oh my word … I asked Vega if they would be interested in sponsoring my YWCA Encore Breast Cancer group and look what they sent us!!

After our work-out we hang out in the yoga room and have a round-table where we talk about our week and have tea and snacks.

The snacks aren’t always super healthy so I decided to use my Vegan Superstar powers for good and I asked Vega if they would sponsor us.  :)

They sent us All-In-One Meal Bars, Savi Seeds and Maca Chocolate Bars. They also sent Starter Kits for everyone in the group.

-2The All-In-One Meal Bars are SO good. We were all buzzing on chocolate by the end of the meeting.

I totally forgot about Savi Seeds. I used to carry them in my store. Have you tried them?? The Karmalized ones are my fav. It’s crazy that this little seed has 17x more Omega 3′s per oz than Salmon! YEAH!!  Plant powered!!

I can’t thank Vega enough for being such a super cool vegan company.  They rock.

In other news I cried my face off today talking about my trouble with Tamoxifen with my group of ladies. It’s amazing to be with other woman who “get it”. I don’t feel so crazy … I’m not the only one struggling.

Full of gratitude today. Overflowing with love …  :)

Love my ladies. Love for Vega. And I love the YWCA for doing this Encore Program.

Posted in Go Vegan! | 8 Comments

I am not in my body…

I am not in my body…

I have completely disassociated and feel like I am floating above myself most of the time. Why? Because I’m in pain. The Tamoxifen is hurting me. My joints are aching. My bones are aching. I can’t seem to get relief no matter what I do.

And I’m only on 1/2 a dose.  :( This is the medication they want me to take for 10 years.

Gerry says I’m like a helium balloon … he’s hanging on to the string and I’m floating away.

This is my 2nd time around trying Tamoxifen. This is a different brand of Tamox and we were hoping that I wouldn’t have any issues with it. I’m trying SO HARD to stay on this pill as it is part of the treatment recommended by my oncologist… but in 30 days my life has gotten really small.

I can’t walk on the beach anymore because I’m afraid my legs will give out. Walking up the stairs has become difficult. I spend more time in bed then I do out of bed.

Everything is uncomfortable. All things I normally do to self sooth – are gone. I can’t wrap myself in a big scarf (I love a big scarf) because I am having hot flashes. I can’t snuggle with Fergus because I hot flash. I can’t snuggle with Gerry because I hot flash. I can’t snuggle under covers… because I hot flash. I can’t even tolerate a hug for more then a few seconds before I hot flash.

I can’t go sit in a hot bath and relax (because I have lymphedema and have to avoid hot water). Because of my lymphedema I have to sleep with a pad that sits on my chest to help move the fluid away from my trunk. I attach it to my chest by wrapping a chest binder around me. Try and sleep with that on while you’re having hot flashes as you sleep and I dare you not to cry.

Speaking of Lymphedema I have to wear a compression sleeve on my right arm to help bring down the swelling. It’s like Spanx for my arm. Have you ever had a hot flash in Spanx?? It’s torture.

I can’t go on long walks (or even short walks) with the dog (because my knees are killing me). I haven’t been to Thetis Lake in forever … There is no way I could do it. :(

60a566bebd2311e391a2121a17c5eeae_8I haven’t had friends over or visited family in weeks. I’m canceling visits and spending more and more time in bed because sitting for too long hurts.

It hurts to stand. It hurts to sit. I hurt. I hurt. I hurt. Yesterday I stepped out of the car and almost fell because my knee gave out. WTF.

My brain is giving out too. It’s hard to have a conversation because I’m not in my body. I’m in that place you go when your body is in constant pain.

My teeth hurt. My gums are swollen. I have mouth sores. I feel like I’m getting the flu … but it never lets up.

The hot flashes are intense. The name Hot Flash should be changed to Hot Attack. First you feel woozy and uncomfortable. Like you’re in a dark basement hiding from someone who is trying to kill you. You have that feeling of fear deep inside you start to bubble up… Then the heat starts. It’s like holding a light bulb against your skin from the inside. Hot Flashes are a lot more uncomfortable on this medication then when I was on chemo. Those were more like “hot sweats”.

I tried to take Fergus for a walk around the block and I got to the end of the street and had a major panic attack. What if I can’t make it back? What if my leg gives out? We turned around and came home … Great. now I have agoraphobia?

I looked at the calendar and realized I have been on Tamox for 30 days and it feels like 30 years. I stopped taking it on Friday. Today is Tuesday and I already feel a little better. The fog is lifting and the pain is subsiding. What is this pill??

They keep telling me this pill can reduce my chance of cancer recurring … but at what cost? What is this pill doing to me?

Everyone I’ve met (through my cancer programs) who is on Tamox says the same thing. That they are in pain. That it’s uncomfortable … but that they do it anyway.

I think they are talking about a different kind of pain then I’m having. I have a high tolerance for pain … I’m a tough chick. Scrappy. I have my chest tattoo’d for fucks sakes. I can take pain. But this pain? It’s unbearable. Unrelenting. Feeling like this? I can’t do it.

I feel like a wuss.

Except that I’m NOT a wuss. I got through a mastectomy, chemo, radiation and it was REALLY FUCKING HARD but I got through it with smiles and laughter and friends and family and Fergus.

But this little white pill? It’s knocked me to my knees. Tamoxifen has drained my light. My normally glass half full is now empty.

We are seeing Dr.B on Wed to talk about what to do next …  :(

 

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