Archive for November, 2005

Post Treatment: Week 5:…and I’m Working On It

Tuesday, November 8th, 2005

The transition to the “new me” continues. Carol has pointed out I have recently said to several people that I have now finished treatment and will soon be back to my “old self” again. Wrong. My “old self” had HepC for decades and struggled with the effects of it. My “new self” is free of HepC. A change of mind-set is required and I am working on it.

I feel like I am experiencing the ghosts of treatment side-effects. Some days I have felt very tired and several other days I have experienced irritation and been quite grumpy. But with a difference to what I experienced on treatment. The other day I could feel I was getting agitated and irritable before I became overtly grumpy with whatever (the interruption to what I was doing, etc). On treatment I don’t remember being aware of feeling irritable beforehand – just suddenly erupting in an outburst, surprising me as much as the other person. And I don’t remember feeling agitated at any time throughout the whole experience of treatment. Now feeling tired doesn’t mean that absolute fatigue which meant just sitting or lying down, it means getting on with what I am doing more slowly or stopping for a few minutes rest.

These current experiences aren’t overwhelming me in the way they did before. On the medication I felt I was caught ‘inside treatment’, like being in a capsule and having to stay there. It feels now like these experiences come up and then they go away. I am not caught inside them in a ‘helpless’ sort of way. They do feel like ghosts rather than the ‘real thing’.

After an experience of feeling agitation, it occurred to me that I am agitated and frustrated with not being able to get on with life – get up to speed again. So my progress continues to be uneven with some days more fruitful than others.

It was exactly a year ago yesterday that I started the big and scary adventure of treatment.

Then I was focusing very clearly and solely on doing the treatment and getting through it. As I move through my current phase I am now focusing my thoughts on helping my liver to recover – from the treatment and the ravages of the virus. I am thinking what diet, exercise and activities will help move back to recovery. Haven’t yet defined all this – but I am thinking about it.

I find myself thinking about what it was like last year, compared to now. I should have a read of my blog entries from that time to see what has changed and what is different now. But there it is – “should”. That’s one way I get caught up in the ‘getting up to speed’ issue. The risk is I will become agitated again in the near future if I haven’t done this task already – I can hear the nagging thoughts, “after all, I’m not really ill any more”.

Actually I still feel anaemic – which makes sense as I have only stopped the meds 4 weeks ago. How will I know when I am no longer anaemic I wonder. I haven’t any hospital appointments now until January. No blood work scheduled. Perhaps it doesn’t matter when the anaemia improves or maybe it is so gradual I won’t really notice. On treatment this would have been monitored. Now it’s over to me to take responsibility for monitoring myself – as people do in the everyday world.

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