Wednesday, November 09, 2011

"Consider God's handiwork; who can straighten what He hath made crooked?" - Ecclesiastes 7:13

 It's that time again kids! Time to enumerate the things that are still screwed up following my bout with the cancer. Let's see how many we can count!

First, and probably most distressing, I no longer have the ability to sing.

I'll let that sink in for a bit. Pay no attention to that cheering, it's probably some Tea Baggers responding to Arizona's new "No Insurance, Go Die" policy.

Yeah, the voice is gone. After that, the lack of saliva glands and the accompanying inability to swallow seem a small thing, I know, but I assure you that swallowing your food is essential to actual eating. Otherwise you're just chewing and spitting. I keep thinking of Johnny Dangerously. "Gee, it'll be good to see ma spit again." I wish I could get that operation. It'd be nice not to wake up in the middle of the night with my lips stuck to my teeth.

Then there's the ball of whatever that's permanently stuck in the back of my throat. Hack and cough and I might dislodge it for a moment, but it's back in a couple of minutes, like a mucus-y little gremlin waiting for me to eat so he can horde more stuff about him. I have come to the conclusion that it won't be cancer that gets me, it'll be "complications from pneumonia" in my old age when I become unable to deal with this shit any longer. Any liquid or solid tends to get shoved upward back there, only to come back after each attempt to fully swallow it. Sometimes it doesn't go down where it's supposed to and ends up in my windpipe. I can't imagine being able to deal with that forever.

Less annoying but still problematic is the Frankenstein mess that is my neck. I've grumbled about this before, the fact that all of my neck problems come from the attempt to make me look more "normal". The skin graft in my mouth I get, since I was missing a good portion of the back of my throat, but the neck thing, no. I'd rather have a working chest muscle without the screwed up yanking of my jaw whenever I move my arm. I'd rather have a bit of a hollow chunk in my neck than this messed up junk I need physical therapy for. It has almost nothing to do with my actual cancer and it's frustrating. The scars mean almost nothing to me and the fact that I'm suffering more than necessary due to what was a cosmetic procedure just seems backwards. My poor neck tendons on the right side look like the cables holding up a suspension bridge.

On the plus side, I can now grow a nice and full mustache for the first time in my life. Too bad it looks like Matt Damon's in The Informant. Chin whiskers are another story. Kinda like my Three Stooges hairline. I had to do the Marine cut to make up for the fact that the back of my head looks like Moe's, or Forrest Gump's.

The other good news is that I feel pretty good. No more fatigue, at least not lately, and all my scars are healing well.

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