Kevin's Dead Cat

After surgery sliced off an entire tumor and 1/3 of my tongue, plus six weeks of radiation therapy, I've been re-learning how to eat, drink, and talk with my newly re-constructed tongue and coping with side effects. But the cancer came back and I don't know what's going to happen next.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

I don't want life to imitate art. I want life to be art.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Shifting Gears

Drank a lot last night... a lot. It was the Hawks' first show of the year at Cole's, AND Ali's birthday. I started off the evening with yet another pizza night with Leslie, Lawrence, and Ryan. Four glasses of wine (and two "where the hell are you" phone calls) later, we made it to the bar just as the band was starting. Chuck, Andy, and Catherine were back from the holiday break; Amy showed up, I hadn't seen her since her birthday in Vegas back in August; Rob, Paul, and Paul were looking fit and sounding wonderful. From what I can recall, it was a fun night.

I should've known better than to drink heavily after an insomnia attack the night before. Now I'm completely exhausted. "Knackered" would be the best word to describe how I'm feeling, but since I don't have a British accent, I run the risk of sounding like a jerk.

Daily life hasn't been as tense since the radiation treatment side effects have been slowly going away. Getting closer to normalcy has been a different kind of adjustment. Sometimes I don't know what to do with myself, hence the binge drinking. I'm running out of things to complain/worry about. So, I don't know if my boredom is actually that, or burn-out from the high level of medical drama that's finally dying down.

Yesterday, I started reading entries from before the surgery. It feels like a whole lifetime ago. I was so worried about what I would be like after recovery. With good reason, because now I am a relative health nut. I haven't had a Superstar Burger, much less the Pastrami Burger at Carl's Jr. yet. I'm not even interested in french fries. To think that I used to have a large combo meal for lunch at least two times a week. Now, I snack on dried apricots, eat tofu nearly every day, and ice cream has yet to inhabit my new freezer.

As more friends are coming back from the holidays, or are just plain available, I've been having more dinner parties. A few haven't seen me since before the surgery; I purposely laid-low with some people because of my "intimacy issues." Seeing their reaction to how different I look now wierds me out. I guess that'll happen when you go from size 14 to 2.

I know I shouldn't over-analyze all the changes that've happened. And it's not like the cancer is completely behind me. I still have to alternate appointments with Dr. McNicoll and a Radiation Specialist each month. But sometimes, when I begin to reflect on what happened last year, everything that happened, I reflexively snap myself out of it when I reach a certain point. I guess it's a defense mechanism to keep myself from screaming until I can't scream any more.

I've always been suspicious about how well I "coped" with everything. But maybe, great support system aside, I've seen too many bad TV cancer dramas.


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