Rage, rage

I am angry at my psychiatrist.

Two weeks ago, I spent nearly an entire session talking about the option of stopping treatment. I was seriously considering it; the psychological toll was beating me down and if treatment wasn’t making me better, maybe I needed to take some time to not feel worse.

It was clear I had given this thought, that it wasn’t some whimsical notion birthed from the stream-of-consciousness that often makes up my sessions. I even ended saying, If the results aren’t conclusive, I’ll probably stop chemo for awhile. That’ll be hard to explain to people. If there’s progression, it’ll be easy to decide: I’ll just do treatment. So when I saw him this week and spoke about how difficult it was to choose between three equally bad choices and he said, You know there’s another option available to you that you may not have thought about and that isn’t often brought up and I sniffed, What is it? and he answered, You could stop treatment, I wanted to say, Are you fucking kidding me? Did you not look at last week‘s notes? We just went over this! but instead I simply said that I wasn’t ready to stop treatment, nor did I need a break because I am already taking a break. And then I wondered if I was boring him, if that’s why he couldn’t remember that we’d already talked about this, and then I was mad at him for making me think he might think I’m boring.

And I’m angry at my oncologist because I need to have a 10 minute conversation with her about this Phase I trial so I can make a definitive decision whether or not to go ahead with it but I can’t do that without finding out if she feels it’s worth the risk to go on the AMG 386. And I left a phone message a couple days ago and I emailed her this morning and she still hasn’t responded to me and I know she is busy but instead I feel like she is ignoring me. So I’m mad because I’m just asking for 10 of her minutes, that isn’t so many, and my minutes are perhaps less than many, and I’d rather not spend the ones I have endlessly going over the potential side effects of each drug, which I can’t stop my brain from doing. And the longer I think about side effects, the more likely it is that I’ll choose based on which drug is least likely to make me ugly.

And I’m angry at everyone who asks me what I’m doing next week or if I want to grab a coffee on Thursday or go for a drink on Friday or if I want to go to a show on the 13th because I don’t know what I’m doing, I literally don’t know, and asking me to make plans right now is like asking me to do a back-flip, I just can’t.

And I’m angry at everyone who asks me how it’s going or what I’ve been up to because what I’ve been up to is simultaneously growing cancer and destroying my immune system with chemo, don’t you know? And I’m angry when good things happen to people and I’m angry when bad things happen to people, though secretly I feel a little good to hear about bad things happening because then I feel a little less alone, but only if the bad things are really bad will I feel a bit good. And that makes me angry at myself because, seriously, what is wrong with me?

But mostly I’m confused because I don’t know if this anger comes from being sad, or if I have been sad so long that I’ve forgotten about anger, and I don’t know how long I’ll have to live with these feelings or if there will ever be a time when I don’t feel them.


About Alicia Louise

I'm a writer, editor, fact checker, storyteller, events organizer, chronically busy yet endlessly lazy, mildly neurotic (though I keep the neuroses well-hidden, one hopes) 32-year-old with recurrent ovarian cancer. I like people and good writing and straight talk. I have a hard time feeling sorry for people, including myself, but the people that I love, I love passionately; one may even say creepily. I try to keep that mostly to myself. I'd like to be charming, but I'm usually just a mess. I'm like a gull slamming into your windshield.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Rage, rage

  1. Nancy says:

    Ouch. I can’t relate in any way to what you’re going through, except that I’m human and have experienced extreme degrees of emotion. But your degrees much be so much more amplified. I just wanted to tell you though, that you are in no way boring. I hardly know you and I find you fascinating. I hope that doesn’t sound too creepy.

  2. Ellie says:

    Hi! I’ve heard a saying that goes, “anger is fear turned inside out”. I think there might be some truth to that. I’ve been following your blog since reading a newspaper clipping about your blog, that was posted on a bulletin board at the Wellspring Cancer support centre at Sunnybrook. Thanks for sharing your experience and being so open and honest about how you experience it all. I can’t possibly imagine what you’re going through, especially since so far my cancer is in remission. Considering your circumstances, anger seems like a pretty normal emotion to be experiencing right about now. For the rest I honestly don’t know what to say because anything I would say sounds so cliche. Your story continues to fascinate me. All the best!

  3. Thank you – again – for this.

  4. Ellie says:

    Oops! I think the saying goes, “anger is pain turned inside out.”

  5. Sandra says:

    Be angry. You have right to be. Let it out. All of it. For as long as it takes. Trying smashing something (if you haven’t already), cheap plates from the dollar store work well. You might just feel a little better after. I know I would be absolutely furious at my psychiatrist if he forgot what I said the last session.


  6. Deb W says:

    I can relate withWwhat are doing this… Fill in the blank and the causal How are you doing? I had my dx and July 3 and have been in flux since.. I have no idea ever what i am doing and where i will be living. For the past 4 weeks i have been in anguish about the possibility leave my family in south FL to MSK for a trial. How are you doing asked by the wrong person .. I can really ruin their day. Or should I give them the standard.. Great. I actually have changed my response to I am alive and for today that is good.

  7. Anissa Agahchen says:

    Oh hun, you are fully entitled to being angry. There is not much I can offer you other than to send you love, love and more love. And thank you for sharing your feelings and journey, I am blessed to hear it. xoxox

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s