Tuesday we learned that the cancer spreading throughout my bone marrow is more than likely a mutated form of DSRCT. While I would like to say I was suprised by the news, the truth is, I am not surprised. I had very little reaction as a matter of fact. Looking across the facets of my life I see that lack of response, that numbness to be a characteristic trait of weary soul these days. On the physical plane I find myself more and more exhausted each and every day. I drink two to four Mountain Dews a day struggling to find some jolt of energy, hoping, with each sip, to activate some deep resevoir of energy. And, with each sip I am reminded that the well is dry. Time is running out. And, I am, without a miracle, dying. This is the first time I have actually written those words. As I did, I sighed. Not because it was the first time I admitted this to myself. I have been talking about it, planning, coordinating, and, thinking through what all needs to be done so, when I am gone, my family is taken care of as well as I was able to before I passed.
What makes this so surreal is the lack of shock. The lack of overwhelming fear. I was afraid at first, afraid the cancer would come back and put me in so much pain, in such embarassing ways, in so many horrible states of mind and being, that, I would dread every second. Yet, as it is turning out, I feel that life is just slowly seeping out of my body. I have pain, but, it is no worse than it has been off and on the past few years. Energy, however, seems to be what I bleed. At work, I sit there, drowing under waves of fatigue, staring mindlessly at a screen blurred by sleep-deprived eyes. When I walk, my knees ache, a deep, endless ache that stabs me in the depths of my bones and musles. As I try to write, read, or, talk with the kids, I will find myself neither asleep nor awake, but, somewhere in between, trying to reserve some little bit of what I have left for a later time. And, yet, they continue to slip away.
For the first time, I am beginning to realize that it may not be an infection or uncontrollable bleeding that kills me. Rather, a plain and simple lack of energy. There are days where I open my eyes and I cannot tell whether I am awake or asleep. In the middle of the night, I may go the bathroom and I find myself leaning against a wall too afraid to walk for fear of possibly falling down and breaking something because I had a brief episode of narcolepsy. I have prayed that God would heal me, that he would restore me, but, even those deep, desparate prayers are slowly ceasing. No force remains to give me the drive to push through every day. Resistance and power are gone. Distant memeories. Literally, as I write, I have to stop, close my eyes, and, take deep breathes, hoping to not fall asleep and hit my head. Transfusions may help, but, they get closer, more frequent, and, seemingly, less effective. I am close enough to sense that my end may not be anything dramatic. It will just be that moment when I stop for a moment never to start up again, with my eyes closed, never to open. This is dark. There is no poetry, beauty or justice in this road. Only loss, despair, darkness and the slow series of daily robberies. Hope. Gone. Strength. Plundered. Power. Dried up. And, for what? Still born hope.