Something *else* nobody tells you about having/having had cancer...

How hard it is to get back into a normal mindset.

I've been in crisis mode, reacting and planning to something horrible, since the first part of September. Now that I'm not in crisis mode any longer, I'm having a hard time functioning.

Work will help. So will getting used to the idea, gradually, that I no longer have cancer; that the worst thing I have left to do is to learn to live with the obturator and get the occasional follow-up scan. Oh, and grow my hair back out.

What an odd feeling this is, going from cursed to cured in a week. It didn't even happen in stages: it happened in one phone call, when Terri (Dr. Crane's PA) told me that not only were the margins clear, but that radiation wasn't indicated. I'm considered cured. And with that five minute phone conversation--and I didn't even have my mouth in, as the phone woke me up--I went from being a cancer patient to somebody who once was a cancer patient.

In a way, I feel like a cancer poseur. I think about Friend Lara and all the shit she has left to go through--it's the stuff I feared most: radiation and chemo. I think about asking for advice on the Oral Cancer Foundation forums, where people have it so much worse than I do.

I feel vaguely guilty for having gotten off so easily. I feel really guilty when I consider how sorry I feel for myself when it comes to things like my speech.

It's been so fucking random.

I never thought I would fear the word "cured". For all of September and most of October it was all I thought about. I meditated on the word, planned for what it would be like to be cured. I never imagined the thought of the word would make me paranoid again.

Oh, well. I guess the change in thought'll come with time.

Meanwhile, I'm going to do something crazy and paint my toenails. That's just the sort of thing that went by the wayside when I had cancer.