It took awhile after the radiation to realize what the new normal would be. The treatment brought with it so much pain in my jaw that I was in tears many nights. My oncologist insisted that it wasn't bad and I should suck on lemon drops. I tried but the pain simply increased.
My face was swollen all the time. My hair 'falling out' was still an issue and my heart was racing all day. Each day about noon, I would be completely exhausted. I would just collapse for lack of energy.
My follow up appointment was dreadful. The results of surgery and radiation were ideal for the circumstances; but the doctor was troublesome. In part I was to blame as I was in need of a good swift taste of the new reality. The doctor mentioned massaging my jaw and to relieve or reduce my stress level. What stress? I wasn't working, had cancer, and couldn't feel better no matter what I did. I needed him to listen. Finally, I convinced the doctor to decrease the synthroid and to realize that I might have a point to the shear lack of energy. He saw that it wasn't depression; but, frustration. He said that I might have something like panic attacks or extra uncontrolled adrenaline put on a basic beta blocker.
The change was dramatic. The lower dose allowed me to grow and keep my hair. All I needed to do now was prove that I was still suppressed from growing the thyroid cells that give the cancer a home. And the beta blocker let me be able to stay up til 9pm. Praise God, my family felt like they had me back. It had been a long 8 months since the lump. I only had 2 months before I prepared to scan again. I sure hoped that the second time around was better than the first. All in all, I was better but still had the lingering jaw pain.
Was I ready to start singing again, or not? I wanted to shout from the rafters, but alas...