Under normal circumstances, being stuck at home wouldn’t be all that bad for me. I could spend my days playing video games from dawn to dusk with little breaks for fulfilling my human needs in order to survive. But the two months’ recovery time I was going to spend at home weren’t looking all that fun.
When I first got back from the hospital, I could barely walk. My tummy felt super tight and I was in extreme pain whenever I tried to move even an inch. Bed was now my best friend. Or so it should have been. I found it very difficult to sleep on my back, but turning on my side was close to impossible, unless I was a masochistic maniac, which, sadly in this case, I was not.
Being in bed, as fun as it is at first, quickly becomes boring and annoying. On top of that, I hate not being able to do things around the house. Since I was advised not to lift anything heavier than a coffee cup, I couldn’t cook or clean. It was driving me insane. The fact that my bedroom was upstairs also became a big problem for me. All the fun was downstairs – TV, my console, even the kitchen. Coming down the stairs was quite challenging to say the least, and getting down would take me the same amount of time as it would for your typical not so mobile granny. So I was stuck in my fortress of boredom, dependent on Owen who I had to call whenever I needed help with something.
When it comes to illnesses, the lack of independence is the thing that terrifies me the most. Having to ask someone for help even with the easiest tasks, like fixing your pillow, because your body failed you, scares the absolute shit out of me. Not being in control of your flesh, even though your mind is perfectly healthy, is my idea of a living hell.
Even watching movies on Netflix and reading books became extremely irritating after a while. You know the way it usually is – the grass is always greener. And don’t get me wrong, I love watching films and reading, but all I wanted there and then was to be up and running again.
But as the time went by I was getting progressively, if slowly, better. I was still in a lot of pain and in no mood for video games, movies or books, but thankfully there were other things I could spend my time doing. Even though cancer barged into my life and flipped it upside down, I wasn’t going to let it ruin everything I’d worked so hard for. I had a lot going on at the time, and I was going to finish what I’d started, despite my obvious physical limitations. It was the second semester of my first year of college, and I wouldn’t even dream of stopping at that stage. I knew that if I left, I wouldn’t go back, and it was important for me to finish it as normal, with the class I’ve started it with and as scheduled. That became my mission.
Myself and a friend of mine were also working on a short comic we were submitting to publishers for their anthology, and I had that deadline hanging over my head. So if anyone asked me what having cancer was like, I would tell them that it was inconvenient more than anything. I guess the timing could never be good when it comes to those things, but I felt that in my case it was particularly bad.
Despite the odds, however, I managed to get all my college projects finished on time, and comic sent off before the deadline and published a few months later. I didn’t give in, even though I had a good excuse to do so and no one would blame me for it, and for that I was very proud of myself, and still am.
Cancer, to me, was a parasite trying to ruin my life. And I wasn’t going to allow that to happen. I would kick its ass and kick it bloody hard, and go on with my life as if nothing happened (and of course use it as an excuse whenever I wanted Owen to make me tea).