The End of Chemo…

…can’t come quickly enough.

I live with this person who answers to the same name as the man I married 15 years ago. He looks a little different and his behavior has led me to dub him Bizarro Adam. My previously responsible husband now lets 18-month-old children play with balloons…’cause what could possibly go wrong? He is tired of sleeping, which was his major hobby and nemesis in college. He drives like…well, like everyone in Atlanta, basically. He wants a tattoo. And he’s okay if I get one too. He, a man who never wanted to spend money or venture too far from home, is planning multiple trips for us in the months to come. And he bought me jewelery. That’s right: unsolicited sparkly things! See, Bizarro Adam is sweet, funny, fun and a bit reckless. He is recognizable in some ways, but key inhibitors seem to have malfunctioned. He keeps referring to himself as “the little drunk guy.” He has lost a lot of weight, so the “little” is fitting; and if you speak to him, the reason for the other adjective will become clear. So I have three kids in the house, only one of them is about 16 and is in charge…at least nominally. (Insert his mischievous laugh here.)

People are asking me when he’ll start recovering. We all miss the old Adam. I’m okay with the tattoo-liking, trip-taking, jewelery-giving part – don’t get me wrong! But the rest? I want him to outweigh me. Seriously. I want him to stay awake for all but about 8 hours a day. I want not to get requests for $42K for a grad school program in Arizona that he’s never cared about before. (Besides, it’s MY turn for grad school!) I’m ready to have a husband and father in the house again. Full time. He may have looked 15 when we got married, but he didn’t act that way. He kinda does now. Except for when he preaches. If I could stop worrying that he would go off the rails or have his legs collapse out from under him, I would love hearing him preach. He saves up all his wisdom and maturity for those 25 to 30 minutes every other Sunday. I cry every time.

He’ll start recovering when he can eat and sleep normally and when his body isn’t being pumped full of poison. See: he’s sick, exhausted, starving, and on drugs. We’re thankful for the ability to treat cancer and the very real hope of a cure in his case, but the process is horrible. He can’t even open sealed Coke bottles at this point, due to muscle atrophy and skin sensitivity. It’s a crazy way to feel at 37. We hope and pray that radiation won’t be as hard on him as chemo has been. We are also praying that the coming four weeks will bring significant healing so he won’t start radiation at a such a physical low. We are thankful that the end of chemo has brought him hope and encouragement, though I have been a real mess. So. The end of chemo. The last cycle starts tomorrow and will be history on Friday. Praise God. Cancer really, really sucks. Give us strength!