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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sister Cranky Pants: Depression with Cancer

As much as I'd like to deny it, with cancer, comes depression. Some of it from the anger, frustration, fear, etc. that you get from simply having the disease, some of it comes from physiological changes due to chemotherapy, and some from the effects of the chemotherapy.

I have found that I have been able to handle the disease-related depression much more easily than that brought on by the effects of the chemotherapy.

I think that part of the reason for this is because my disease has only been nominally symptomatic in the last three years. I’ve really only had bone trouble. Other than pain from that, it really hasn’t caused me real discomfort. The chemotherapy on the other hand, has been a giant pain in the infused ass.

I feel nauseated. I have a headache. I feel bloated and disgusting. My brain has trouble keeping up with conversation. As a result, I get cranky when I can’t understand what someone is trying to say to me. So I have a group of people, especially KB, who are doing all these things to help me out and I respond with cranky faces and barbed retorts. When I see the looks on their faces,  I end up feeling terribly guilty. I end up feeling like I don’t deserve to be treated well, that I should just be rejected by all of humankind and left alone to wither away, or barf up my guts, whichever comes first. I feel like rolling up into the fetal position and disappearing, and that my disappearing would be the best thing to happen for everyone.

Complete self-pity, I know.

Which makes me loath myself even more.

It’s a horrible circle that I have to talk myself out of. I also know that I have to control my nastiness. Some people have told me that it’s understandable, that I should take it easy on myself, etc. But I have always believed that you can’t use cancer as an excuse to be a douche bag, and I still believe that. I still have self-control and choice and I need to exercise it, despite how I feel.

It's time to give Sister a swift kick in the Cranky Pants.

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