Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hep C Treatment - Day 03

Okay here's a quick list of symptoms for yesterday; sensitivity to light/sound, nausea, lethargy, clumsiness, poor concentration, headaches and shortness of breath. That's the bad news. The good news is that all of these a quite mild and come and go throughout the day.

As said in my comment in the previous post, I had spent the whole day beating myself up thinking I should get up and do something practical. It took ages to realise my primary job was helping the drugs do their work. I feel this is particularly true at the beginning. If I get the treatment off on a good course the rest will surely follow.

Today, I woke feeling pretty good. But have noticed I get tired quickly. Watching the closing of the para olympics was exhausting. Did anybody else think our contribution was rubbish?
Symptoms not so bad as yesterday which is good.

Just one further, blogging, observation, I can't get rid of a feeling of discomfort writing about myself like this. Every time I have to use "I" it makes me wince a little inside. I don't know if its a healthy humility or an inverted sense of ego. Anyway, it is as it is. The important thing is to record ruthlessly what is happening to me for the sake of the final book. I could have done this in a private note book of course, but I can see already the blog provides motivation, support and stimulating input so its certainly better.


Debi said...

Personally, I really relish being able to stay up to date with what's happening to you without driving you mad.

And communicating with the outside world, esp at this time when you're more cut off from it, has to be healthy, no?

And I'll bet that after a while, you find new people coming here, who will know exactly what you're experiencing and will be grateful that you're articulating it.

There's more, but I won't go on. Just shake off that English reserve thing and give yourself permission - whether it be to feel lousy or to talk about it in the 1st person.

Chris Vacano said...

Agreed with Debi on all counts. And perhaps you don't have much of the exhibitionist in you... neither do I. I felt a lot of the same unease about exposing myself to the world, particularly at a point of heightened vulnerability. What I discovered, though, is that over time, it becomes very empowering... in ways one might not even expect.

Your philosophy of letting yourself feel sick to help the drugs do their work is right. As I recall, the side effects are supposed to be at their worst in the first few weeks, while your body adjusts to the new dynamics within.

One other thing I just remembered that helped me out immensely was setting small milestones all along the way (you probably noted the obsession with fractions in the early stages of my blog), rather than trying to swallow the course of treatment whole. Little, attainable goals become accomplishments that build like a head of steam, and before you know it, you're at your destination looking back on one grand accopmlishment... and hopefully forward to a life free of the vultures pecking at your liver.

Carry on!

Rich said...

I have to say its very humbling to have you both take such an interest and offer so freely your wisdom. It is true Debi this does make me realise there is a world out there. Chris, your small steps has reminded me of all that I was taught on the Expert Patient Programme. Did you ever do that? I will think about what steps to take.

Chris Vacano said...


Not sure I've ever heard of the Expert Patient Programme, much less participated. Maybe it's a strictly UK thing?

As for feeling humbled... for my part, don't. I'm just a regular guy who can't resist offering insights and words of encouragement to anybody who will listen, particularly a fellow "blood brother." :)

Debi said...

'Blood brother' - great term!

Rich - thought of something else. If writing in the 1st person still feels hard, there's absolutely no reason why you shouldn't write in the 3rd person for the direct experience sections.

This is your blog and you make the rules! It's whatever feels most comfortable and useful for you.