Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Life In The Fast Lane

When I was little, my dad would always sing this song and quote it when we were busy as a family "life in the fast lane". I think I have been living in the fast lane lately. Following your life list is great, but I have to remember it's a "life" list, not a "week" list.

My new role with Rethink has been starting off a little bumpier than I had hoped. I don't know how I was assuming that it would be easy to get 8 women all on the same page within an hour, but I did. I have now learned that this is not possible. Our hope is to get a June event off the ground to raise awareness of what Rethink is in Calgary and get some real momentum happening within the committee. But since it's already mid-March, that leaves a lot of pressure on my shoulders to make it happen. We have another call this week and I'm hopeful that I can get everyone on the same page and working towards the same goal.

The house that we are living in now went on the market last week. Since then we've only had 2 showings and an open house. That's probably a lot, but I was really hoping that the first person that saw our house would love it as much as we do and make an offer that day. Again, another dose of reality for me to learn. Until that does happen, we are struggling to keep our house "show home ready" with a 2 year old.

Those of you that follow my blog would have heard me talk about the balance before. For some reason unknown to me, there seems to be a balance that exists between the health conditions of Ryan, Tricia and me. When one of us gets great news, another gets bad news. This balance unfortunately hit us again last week.

On Wednesday morning, I got a bright and sunny email from Tricia letting me know that her application to Health Canada to approve her transplant had finally been sent. This process has been ongoing since last fall and we were all growing very short in patience for its finalization. This transplant option brings real hope to Tricia's future and we were all holding our breath while all the lawyers and doctors involved worked on the application. We should hear within the next 4 weeks whether this gets approved and the wheels at the Tom Baker Cancer Center have already started turning to get ready for this to begin.

That day I was at an all day session with some of my peers at work. Following this day of planning, we went out for dinner at a very nice Calgary restaurant. Although I was feeling fine, shortly after dessert, I started to feel very dizzy, broke out in a cold sweat and fell over onto the bench I was sitting on. For the next 30 minutes or so, I laid there popping in and out of consciousness and assuring those nearby that I was alright and I just needed to rest. Inside I knew that something was really wrong with me, but I didn't want to draw any further attention to my already deathly embarassed state. Once Ryan arrived to drive me home he knew that something wasn't right and called for an ambulance to come and get me. At first assessment, my heart rate was about double my normal resting state and my blood pressure was really low. They took me to our all too familiar Foothills Hospital and there they assessed me for an immediate risk of an impending heart attack or a blood clot in my lungs caused by my medication. After 4 pokes for blood, some intravenous fluids and some heart tracing tests, they said that I was not in immediate danger and I could go home to rest.

Now almost a week later I am starting to feel more like myself. But that whole situation definitely took a lot out of me. Unfortunately they still don't really know what happened, but I will be talking in more detail with my oncologist about it next week. It was weird. In everything that I've been through over the past 2 years, that was one of the scariest moments that I can remember. I felt like my world could change for the much worse momentarily and there was nothing that I could do to stop that. I was very thankful that I was surrounded by people that I work with and trust so much, because they truly did take great care of me!

The next few weeks will continue to be life in the fast lane with everything I have going on, but I will also take some time to rest in between the many activities. This poke on my shoulder was another gentle reminder to slow down and keep my health at the top of my mind at all times. Even though I crave a normal life, I have to remember that the old normal has been replaced by a new normal and I am still trying to figure out what that means.

1 comment:

  1. Well Tasha,
    This latest posting has been an emotionally-packed read for us; you have made us laugh and cry. You have also caused us to identify with some situations and to reflect on others.

    We laughed at your reminder that a "life" list cannot be accomplised in a week, no matter which lane we're travelling in. Your description of a committee of 8 women trying to agree quickly on one plan of action is also very funny. Good luck in the days ahead!

    David and I can closely identify with your home-selling experiences. We have "been there and done that" several times over. Of course, your house will sell in time, and we can only hope that it will happen soon for you.

    I was most affected by your latest "good news, bad news" scenerio. I have been waiting for Tricia's transplant application to be sent to Health Canada. Yet, when I learned that the forms are finally on their way, I felt so anxious about what may lie ahead that I had to stop and remind myself to keep hoping.

    If your own recent set-back is "one of the scariest moments" that you can remember in the past two years, it must have been terrifying. We hope your oncologist can throw some light on the situation. Not knowing what went wrong has to be very unsettling. You must be wondering if, when and why such an episode might happen all over again.

    In the end, what really got us thinking is your question about what is normal. Very often people try to meet a standard that just isn't right for them. It seems that "normal" is different for each of us. So, the sooner we figure out what is normal and good for ourselves, the better.

    Thank you for yet another update, Tasha. As you yourself suggest, we hope that you are able to slow down and keep your health at the top of your mind at all times. Even at that, we know you will face each day fully alive, as you always do. Take care!

    Sincere support and best wishes,
    Louise and David