Friday February 22, 2013

Week 5 of radiation is in the books.  The end is in sight.  5 more treatments to go...  This week, radiation has been kicking my butt.  I am so tired that I can nap every day, and still go to bed at 9pm.  It makes me feel so unproductive and that makes me feel frustrated.

How can radiation to a non-essential body part cause such fatigue?  Dr. Laack explained it like this:  something foreign is happening to your body and your body is fighting back.  Just like when you have the flu, your body requires rest to fight it off.  Same type of thing is at work here.

Dr. Laack also explained that us watching Shannon sail through things relatively easily may have given us the wrong impression.  Shannon set an unrealistic standard for us.  Ain't that the truth!  Dr. Laack said kids generally handle radiation better than adults because their bodies are more resilient.  And, well, Shannon was Shannon, so she handled it as well as anyone.

So, the bottom line is I'm suppose to rest when I need to rest and not beat myself up about it.  One more week of treatment and then another few weeks as my body slowly climbs back to normal.  Patience is required...

Yesterday, Erin and I volunteered at the Country Cares for St. Jude Radioathon.  Erin really enjoyed it and even went live on the air with me to talk with DJ Julie Jones about our time at St. Jude.  Miss E carries herself with more confidence every day it seems.  She is coming to accept that these types of events are now our duty, and we need to handle them with as much grace as we can.

Erin told me on the way home, "That was fun.  It felt good to help out."  That's the spirit, and that's how we honor Shannon.

This weekend brings us a visit from Grandma & Papa Harkins.  They arrived from Nevada just in time to help us shovel snow and then joined Dan and I this morning for our daily trip to Desk R. Lots of memories there for them, too.  While they are in town, they will take in cousin Laurynn's performance in her school musical tonight and then watch some of Erin's basketball tournament here in town on Saturday and Sunday.  Once again, it's a weekend on the go for team O'Hara.

Just a quick update today as we carry on.  Now, I need to go take a nap...