Radiant Schmadiant

This year the holidays feel like they’re headed at me like a laserbeam.  I’m totally knackered from the radiation and this fatigue makes the usual holiday bustle a little daunting. I’m also still feeling some chemotherapy side effects, including a hormonal tailspin that comes with abrupt cessation of ovarian function.  This means that I’m prone to a lot more anxiety than usual – as if cancer, the holidays and this economy weren’t cause enough for a spike in anxiety.


This being week three of radiation, a light red sunburn has appeared on my skin in the area they blast — which is most of my left side (underarm, upper back and chest.)  I am literally “radiant.”  I’m told I’ll be getting even more of a glow as this treatment goes on, which eliminates the option of wearing any strappy or low-cut little numbers to holiday parties this year.  (I know there’s a joke in there somewhere about Rudolph the Red Boobed Reindeer but I’m just too pooped to think it through.)


It’s not a good combination, this fatigue and anxiety, but nobody ever said the holidays were easy – that myth went the way of believing a fat man in a red suit could shimmy down the chimney. Nobody ever said cancer was easy either, and I’m really feeling it these days.  Maybe during chemo I was so focused on just surviving the poisons and their side effects that I was able to stay in the present, spending my energy in short-term bursts.  Now it seems I am looking ahead to the rest of my year of treatment with dread and a general slumping of shoulders.


Anyway, pass the egg nog, send in the kids, and let’s get some family and friends over here quick, before I get all Ebeneezered out and forget what this time of year is really supposed to be about.




Filed under Living with Breast Cancer

3 responses to “Radiant Schmadiant

  1. Judy Reddall

    Dear Leanne: Thank you for your wonderful blogs. I think of you daily and am in awe of your honesty. You are doing a great service and I am humbled by your courage. Please enjoy your family over the holidays and hang tough. We are on your side.
    Judy & Bill

  2. Kathleen Tabinga

    Dear Leanne,
    God bless you and your family. May God help us find a cure for cancer ’cause cancer SUCKS!

  3. Sleepless in San Francisco

    You have been such an awesome inspiration to anyone who has been lucky enough to read your blog. Those of us who haven’t been with you day by day simply can’t imagine how draining this whole journey has been for you and how tired you must be after all these months. Until I read your blog, I thought going to the dentist was stressful – ha!

    But there’s light at the end of your tunnel and that light is having all this behind you.

    My prayer for you is that you will enjoy a Christmas of great hope and a 2009 that allows you to ‘get your life back’!

    And, again, thank you Leanne for showing every one of us what real courage looks like.

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