Friday, May 29, 2009

So what now?

Hello everyone

It is Friday and Ken and I are on our way back from Eugene.

Eight radiation treatments done and......17 to go.

I think they are going pretty well. The nausea has not been as bad this week, until today. We have been able to do a lot of other things in Eugene this week.

My radiation oncologist told me that my gastrointestinal symptoms might be less if I went into my treatments with a full bladder.  For my treatments I am lying on my stomach and the radiation beams are directed front to back and back to front and left to right and right to left.  The left to right and right to left ones are aimed towards the back half of the pelvis. The bladder is in the radiation field and all the areas where there are lymph nodes at the bottom and back of the pelvis. When the bladder is full it "lifts" the bowels out of the pelvis and out of the radiation field. Lying on my stomach also moves my bowels to the front.  Today I just did not do a very good job of filling my bladder before treatment.

I finished all the vocals for my cd yesterday and so now, it all just needs to be mixed.....and the cover work needs to be done.  This has been weighing heavily on me, feeling after all the work that has gone into this cd, that I want to finish it, but many days just not feeling up to doing the work.

So now I have some time to reflect, look at where I am at and figure out what I want to do after all the treatments are over (end of August).  You always hear of cases of cancers where someone is given 2 months to live, 6 months to live....whatever. Clearly that is not my situation at all. Often people in those situation are extremely ill, and not able to do anything much.

 You always think...if I only had x long to live, I would do   y.......

My situation is that I am undergoing all these treatments with the hope of a, live for a long time and die from something else.  There are no guarantees though. Cancer being cancer, it may recur.  That is basically the reason I am getting chemo and radiation, as I was felt to have a high risk of recurrence.

I am bound and determined to do everything in my power to prevent this.  If it does recur, 50% will recur in one year, 75% in 2 years and with endometrial cancer, it is rare to recur after 3 years.

So what to do for these next 3 years?  If it does recur, I foresee more radiation, more chemo, or more surgery combined with a poorer prognosis. I have had 3 long months to come to terms with my diagnosis to the point of making rational decisions  about my future. 

I think that the operating principal here is DO NOT DELAY GRATIFICATION. To make my life as idylic as possible... as soon as possible.  The good life just cannot wait.   Somehow all of life's stressors seem easier to deal with from that perspective.

Unfortunately it is not great now, with chemo and radiation, however once that is done, I can work towards change.

I have had a very stressful past few years between the politics of my job and oddly, enough the music. I do love my job, and I do love the music, but they both have extremely stressful parts to them, but perhaps viewing them from a different perspective is all that is needed, we will see.

So  life will change, but only because it was due to.

love and peace

Janet Bates

jankenb @


  1. I admire you resilience in the face of adversity, not sure I could even cope with writing a blog, let alone completing a CD with the treatments you are currently going through.

    3 years is a long way to look ahead but also a micro fraction of time. My eldest daughter was 24 this week and I look back thinking wow! where did those years go.

    Good luck with the rest of your treatment and the new CD

  2. well you have to fill up the time somehow. If I spend too much time just sitting, I start to feel sorry for myself.
    I too have been recently looking back at my children and how fast the years have gone, my oldest is almost 22.
    There is a song on this next cd about that, it is called where time goes...