Sunday, December 8, 2013


I am stuck in the CRASH of chemo - when your body comes off the steroid high. The steroids they give you to counteract the side effects of a drug that is intended to save your life but could also kill you.

I don't know how people do chemo for life. That is what stage 4 cancer patients face. I am in round 3 out of 8, and I am miserable.

If this doesn't work, and the cancer comes back, I will let it be. I'd rather the cancer kill me than the chemo. I'm okay with surgery, cut it away if you can. Radiate it, if you can. It's not pretty but it's doable. But this, the chemo juggle, seems futile.

Tuesday, after much resistance, they placed the port in me - a catheter that shoots the chemo into a large vein directly above my heart. I followed that up with my third oxaliplatin infusion.

I cried for four hours straight the day they put the port in. I cried for the loneliness and ridiculousness of my illness. I cried for the suffering I endured as a result of 7 breast cancer surgeries - 1 to remove my breasts and 6 to reconstruct them.

But mainly, I cried for my deceived, betrayed, abandoned, badly wounded heart.

A dear friend recently wrote, "You miss him because you are remembering the good. Remember the bad."


But for today, I am stuck in a Dave Matthews song - haunted by a cryptic sax, deafening drum and hypnotic strum, and crashing in waves of promises that no longer include me.

xo, MonkeyME


  1. Love the song... not your wounds. :( All I've got is Hugs. -J

  2. I am sending you love.

  3. I read blogs of people who fight their battle on and on and on with various chemo cocktails over a matter of months and years. I don't know how they do it either, but somehow they do. Your will to survive is very strong, dear lady. You will get through this and I hope and pray you never have to go through such pain again. Your heart will heal in time. You may feel you've crashed but you will get back up again. I always have hugs for you.

  4. after two cancers and the possibility of another I too made the decision not to seek any more treatment. unless someone has gone thru what we have they do not have a right to comment on what we choose for ourselves. but I do have to agree you have a strong will to survive. hang in there we need you.

  5. Thoughts and prayers for u Shannon.


  6. Life has dealt you an unfair hand and I feel bad for you. Hugs today and always.

  7. Your last sentence is so poetic and so truthful. Beautiful songs seem to mock us when love is lost. And probably when facing a life-threatening illness as well. Only you can decide when treatment has run its course. You will know, I believe. Hugs.

  8. There are no words to console you, I have nothing to lessen your suffering. I can only say, I love you and am continuing to think of you daily. I pray in my way and send a wave of positive energy and love towards you. I am still a huge fan of your writing and am gladdened by the fact that you still write with your heart and soul, sharing the beauty of your spirit, in blood , sweat and pain. You are so good, it makes me cry. If I can help in any way please do not hesitate to call upon me.
    Love Always, INKY

  9. The oxaliplatin blues are a hard song, and the plaintive voice of the lead singer is not always loud. But her story is true, and it sheds light and strength to the world and is reflected back to the songstress herself.

    Shannon - the darkness is impermanent. Ask your oncologist for assistance with the heavy depressive parts of the treatments. They are times that you can (and will) overcome. If I am anything, I am living proof of that.



  10. I'm sorry that this is your reality right now. I know how hard this is, but I think you are strong and will get to the other side of treatment. I'm praying for you. If I could do more, I would.

  11. you don't know me, i come from ezra's, but i'd come help if i were in the area. anon, above, is right about the depression. there's no reason he can't help you list just a smidge of that, if not more.

  12. My heart is with you. I read the posts I missed. I've been mostly gone from blogging. But I thought of you often and whispered a little prayer for you.

  13. I am so very sorry you are suffering.

  14. Stay strong dear :(

    You are a brave person

  15. I think of you often. Always actually. And it saddens me to know this - but I empathize and understand.

    I get scared sometimes that the pain and the rest of the side effects are so debilitating now - what exactly are we supposed to do when it gets worse?

    It is incredibly empowering to be able to say enough. Some days there words just sit in the back of my throat. Swollen...

    The fear. The fear is the worst I think.

    Hugs, much love and so many prayers my friend. Please try to rest.

  16. The despair and overwhelming gloom that unrelenting rounds of chemo can bring do eventually lift. There will be a break in treatment, or treatment will end, and you'll start to feel better physically and mentally. The sunshine is not gone forever, it's just under a giant sucky cloud. Stick it out; you can do this GM.

  17. Hey Green Monkey Girl...

    "A dear friend recently wrote, "You miss him because you are remembering the good. Remember the bad.""

    All in all, pretty sound advice... I had pined for a lost love for quite a while when it dawned on me that I was lamenting the love we COULD have had... or SHOULD have had... but in reality, it never was.

    My good friend at work has breast cancer... she had surgery... she is on some medication... and if she stays on it, it reduces the chance of the cancer reoccurring to 10% over a 10-year period. The meds she is on has kicked her butt... so she stopped taking them... she talked to her dr... and then called me... by going off her meds, the odds increase to 25%... 1 out of 4 instead of 1 out of 10.

    We talked the probabilities, but in the end I told her she was the one that needed to make that decision. She has a daughter that she wants to see grow up... so her decision is to go back on her meds.

    It seems nothing is easy anymore...



  18. My cancer was resistant to my first try at chemo and I decided to stop any further treatment in the spring. Recently I decided to try a palliative dose of only one chemo to see if it would ease my symptoms. Within one day all the nasty side effects were evident and after only 4 days I decided the cancer symptoms were much more tolerable than the chemo and treatment was stopped. I do not see stopping treatment as a failure I think it takes a lot of courage, and I for one am happy to enjoy the last part of my life without chemo.

  19. Shannon, I am so, so sorry you are dealing with so much. Too much! I am thinking of you and holding you close. Your friend's words are very wise: "You miss him because you are remembering the good. Remember the bad." The mind has a marvelous way of filtering out the yuck while remembering the finer points of the past; employing this tactic while going through chemo would be difficult but so brilliant. Sending you a HUGE pair of rose-colored glasses with which to view your brave new world, Shannon. You deserve all the roses and rosiness we can conjure up. {{{{hugs}}}}

  20. I wish, I wish, I wish I could do something. Anything.
    I think about you a lot, too, along with all these people.If you ever feel a random calm, warmth, some love... it's us.
    We would all take our love, and transform it into lightning bolts, and throw them at those cells.


Thank you for encouraging my JOY of writing. By reading and commenting you are feeding my soul, stroking my heart, and in the end...making me a better writer.

Thank You For Encouraging My Joy of Writing

Thank You For Encouraging My Joy of Writing

Shannon E. Kennedy


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