Friday, August 27, 2010

Week 1

The first week of classes is behind me and I am exhausted. I know I throw that word around a lot, but once you've gone through any type of major illness, exhausted becomes a regular part of your vocabulary. Leading up to the first day of class, I was much more active than I have been in the nearly four years since this all began.

This week has challenged me on a new level. I'm now attempting a level of activity that's outside of my comfort zone. I'm attempting to play normal with the other kids.

The LSU campus is enormous and open and peppered with a confusing assortment of old buildings. As a student, you will do a lot of walking. I've been fortunate this semester. Most of my classes are confined to the engineering building. Unfortunately, I still get more direct sun than I'd like.

I was able to get a parking permit that would allow me to park closer to my classes, thanks to my very understanding BR oncologist. He's an alum and remembered what a nightmare commuter parking at LSU can be. He was worried about the sun exposure setting off my GvHD.

I've been religious about wearing three different sunblocks, but I'm still having GvHD issues. My cheeks and nose are covered in rashes and scabs on a daily basis. It itches. There's a spreading rash on my left forearm that looks a bit like a sunburn. It's sensitive to the touch and feels very much like a sunburn. My feet, hands, and calves have been cramping off and on throughout each day. It makes concentrating in class something of a game. At home, I can get up and walk around to stretch the muscles. I can't do the same during a lecture.

As far as I'm concerned, these are all very minor nuisances in the big scheme of things. If a little discomfort is the price I have to pay for normalcy, then bring it on. I'm happy to be able to do it.

I've already got several assignments due next week, so blogging is going to be tough. I'm going to do my best to stick to my once-a-week promise. If I get a little behind, don't worry. Sometimes, no news really is good news.


Nancy said...

Congrats on the "A" in your marketing class! Good luck attending real classes this semester. You can do it! Ann, you are truly an inspiration to so many.

Love ya,

Susan C said...

Great job. I hope that, as you adapt, you feel less exhausted.

Tina said...

so glad to hear the first week went well. i'm sure you'll become a little more accustomed to all of the extra energy you are expending, both mental and physical. it's just really awesome that you are back. and the normalcy of it all must be so worth it.
when i come to visit, i'll follow you around a with a parasol. you'll get a minor break from the sun. :)
now the important question is, what do you want your parasol to look like? I was thinking one with smurfs printed all over. or perhaps the fraggles.

PJ said...

Keep it up, girl. You'll adjust. Glad you get to park up close to your classes. We need all the help we can get.