Sunday, August 19, 2012

The three F's--Failure, Fatigue and Fear

"Failure is, in a sense, the highway to success, in as much as every discovery of what is false leads us to seek earnestly after what is true, and every fresh experience points out some form of error which we shall afterwards carefully avoid."--John Keats

If a picture is worth a thousand words...

Well....let's just say--I over did it the months of April, May, and the last few weeks, I have felt like our poor back yard--dead, with the only thing growing--weeds.

So, I cleared my calendar...and this is how I have been spending my spare time:

Why, oh, why? Remember, boot camp?  Well, it was really good for me, however...I am finding out, even good things can tip the balance scale.  Five weeks ago, I noticed my neck starting to hurt, which led to my back hurting, which led to headaches, which led to increase in fatigue, due to pain waking me up at night.  Now, I am pretty sure that this pain is related to over training, but to reassure some concerned family members, I do have an appointment at my oncologists office this week. 

A few weeks ago, due to the pain, I significantly decreased the intensity of my exercise workouts.  At first, I felt like a failure and was real disappointed in my body and it's lack of ability. Mr. Keats words helped me realize that my inability to do boot camp, doesn't mean I am a just means, (at this time) I have to avoid the intensity. So, for now, my exercise routine consists of daily stretching and walking for at least 30 minutes.   

I share this recent bump in the road, to offer encouragement to other survivors who find themselves struggling with some of the limitations and frustrations which can come after cancer treatment.  Many of us are walking in uncharted waters, without much guidance on "life after treatment."  By sharing our collective experiences in cyber world, we can help each other.

With my recent neck/back pain...I really struggled with some questions--
1) Who should I  call for advice? My internist or my oncologist?
2) The rule of thumb after cancer is the 2 week rule, if something still hurts after 2 weeks, we are to notify our physician.  However, I find this rule isn't always "cut and dry." For instance, last year I had planter fascitiis--cancer in the heel is very unlikely. This spring I had shin splints--again cancer here very unlikely. Now, I have the back pain--again, I think it is due to over training...but with the cancer history--it brings questions??

Now, most days...I seldom think about cancer.  Cancer is part of my life history, but it doesn't make up my life.  That is why the other evening...I was caught  off guard when my mind decided to pay a visit to Uncle Fear.  You see, I thought Uncle Fear was dead and buried, but when your body and soul are dry...fear, like the ugly weeds in our yard, seems to grow best in the dry conditions especially when fertilized with fatigue.  Thankfully, my visit with Uncle Fear was only a few minutes, as I quickly kicked him out of my mind and instead enjoyed a cup of tea with God's word.  For I have learned, it His Word that comforts me and reminds me...

"For I know the plans I have for you, " says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11

Question:  What refreshes you during a dry season? or comforts you when you have fear? 


Roxane B. Salonen said...

Dear Kim, I loved the visuals of where you are spending your time. I also love the new blog header. It brought me a sense of peace and warmth seeing your partially lit desk. :) Thinking of you as you work to push Fear aside. It is a human emotion, but can easily take over. I'm glad you're working on nudging it away. Hugs...

Vicky said...

A quiet respite- a time to be really still and listen. To escape the trappings of every day life and the noise and the distractions and to read uplifting words with a spiritual message. The release of the every day and fully knowing I am not in control of any of it helps me gain perspective :) I'm thinking of you!

Julia Tomiak said...

Kim, I'm sorry you've had setbacks but proud of how well, and wisely, you are handling them. I'll pray everything goes well at your appointment this week.
How do I handle fear? Well, this summer, I heard a man speaking on Hebrews who pointed out that if we entertain anxiety, we aren't fully dependent on God. Let me tell you, I'm good at worrying, and I never thought of it as something that distances me from God. Now, if the worry starts, I've gotta pray. Go back to those verses. Sounds like you are too. Good luck!

Hester's Heart said...


I appreciate you sharing your journey with us.

Rest easy girl and let us know the outcome of your appt.

Love, Hester ;)

Susan Stilwell said...

Hi Kim - love the new header! And I'm also glad you've had a chance to relax and rest this summer. And don't fret about the grass. Everyone's looks that way in August (unless they spend a fortune on watering). It'll come back next year.

Praying for you as you heal from your workout aches. Please let us know how your appointment goes. I pray it's unremarkable :)

Love, Susan