Meltdowns and other manifestations of fatigue and stress

I was recently reading the blog from Cancer Bitch about meltdowns and thought it was incredibly timely.  I, too, have been in meltdown.  And, for no good reason.  Except fatigue and stress.  It doesn’t feel acceptable to blame the cancer or the treatment, even though i want to, kind of.  My treatment was over almost 15 months ago.  Supposedly, the cancer is gone. But, nonetheless, I just wanted to cry. And cry. And pull the covers up and cry.

True, I am training to participate in my first Danskin triathlon. And the training is hard and my body is fighting back and I am exhausted and I hurt and I am totally graceless and awkward and frustrated and resigned and you name it. And then, yesterday I just wanted to cry. For no particular reason. I just wanted to cry. And I can’t blame it on treatment or chemo or anything. And, it has been 15 months and I should be ok and, and, and…… But I just wanted to cry. But, of course,  I didn’t cry because I didn’t have a reason.

Interesting how I had to have a reason–a socially acceptable reason- to allow myself to feel and express that feeling.  I wonder if some of the fatigue I am feeling comes from my unwillingness to just feel what I feel. Why, I wonder, do I need to have permission and validation to have and express feelings?  How interesting it is that I assume that because I am not currently in treatment or actively manifesting the disease that I should believe that would be the only reason I can use to justify a meltdown.  I can’t just feel stressed and fatigued because I am working hard to catch up on debt from medical treatments or a down economy, or stressed because I am eating differently and moving my body more, or stressed because I am taking on several new projects, including writing a book and presenting a number of workshops.  For some reason, I believe I should be able to handle all of these without being stressed. What???!!!  What is that all about?

What I am realizing is that life is stressful without journeying with cancer.  We all feel stress and everyone has a right to feel that and express it.  If it means crying, then by crying.  If it means cuddling and sleeping, then by cuddling and sleeping.  Meltdowns are the body’s way of saying “you aren’t dealing with this.  You have forgotten to take care of me.”

Once I realized that expressing what I am feeling is the first step in taking care of me, last night I chose to just cry.

And then, today, in the mail, I got the results from my most recent cancer screen and it was negative.  And, for a moment, I thought “See, I have a reason to be stressed.  I was waiting for these results.” Perhaps.  But, do I really need a justified reason—still?

Maybe.

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2 Responses to “Meltdowns and other manifestations of fatigue and stress”

  1. Rich Rosebush Says:

    what a great site and informative posts, I will bookmark your site. Keep up the good work!

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