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Monday
Nov012010

Chemo: Round Two

I've gotta say it, and most of you might think I'm crazy, but I had a feeling about this during my first round of chemo and it was only confirmed today.

Chemo days are some of my FAVORITE days.

I love chemo days for many reasons, but mainly because it's the day I get to actively take it to that cancer and, of course, the competition of the whole thing just pumps me up and energizes me all day. Even now, at 11pm, I'm wired -- and that's after getting up at 8:30am, being at USC Norris from 9:30am until about 5:45pm (and, ahem, getting chemotherapy drugs drip dripped into my body), running home to change clothes, hitting the gym at 6:45pm, and then going to a birthday dinner for my dear ol' dad's 50th at Nick & Stef's (Happy Birthday, Dad! Sorry I stole your thunder and had chemo on your 50th birthday. It was not intentional).

But how could I not be energized? Today was awesome. I got to hang out with Dr. Lenz and Taline and Roger (my Trojan team), I made the day very unpleasant for these foolish tumors, I pumped some iron, and I got to spend time with my trio of nurses, best friend Rhett (who flew home to NYC this afternoon), and my other best buds Timmy and Sabrina. What's not to love?

And something hilarious happened today, and you're all going to love it. 

During my first hour or so of chemo, I enjoyed a Benadryl-induced nap. When I woke up, my mom informed me that a woman in the chemo room -- a visitor for a very old man getting treatment -- had been staring at me while I slept. Not staring in a kind way, or even a sympathetic way, but staring in a very nosy, "I'm sizing you up/I'm trying to figure out how young you are"-type way. The minute my mom told me about this, I sprung into action. "Is she still here? Can I start some sh*t with her?" If this rude woman was going to stare at me, I was going to make it as PAINFUL AS POSSIBLE for her. Time to embarrass the hell out of this person who obviously has no common sense or courtesy, and a real sourpuss face to top it off. 

So I waited, very excited. The woman returned to the room to check on her old friend and, of course, she looked over at me. I waited a few seconds, until she was deep in her stare, and whipped my head over, looking her dead in the eye and smiling with all my teeth bared. You know what? Maybe I was even a little wide-eyed. I did it really quickly and looked away so the lady had just enough time to look away but look right back at me because you know she couldn't help herself. So I did the same thing again, all while saying in a sing-songy voice to my mom: "This is a confrontaaaationnnnnn! I'm confronting this laaady!! I'm going to keep smiiiiiling at her!!!" Then I whipped my head over again and gave her the scary happy smile. She immediately averted her eyes and TRIED SO HARD TO READ HER KINDLE AND STOP LOOKING OVER. 

This woman could not be helped, though. About an hour later, when the old man was getting ready to leave, this woman just HAD to feast her eyes on me again. I realized then that I was going to have to bring in the serious artillery. So I did.

I was in the middle of discussing something with my parents when she took one last look, so at the end of my sentence I said, "And to add insult to injury, I've gotta deal with THIS lady staring at me" and quickly looked over at the lady as if the statement and my crazy glance at her happened at the same time. God, she was embarrassed. I started laughing so hard and exclaiming, "I got her good this time!"that, by the time her old companion had wheeled himself out of the chemo room and she was long gone, I had tears in my eyes. I hope I taught her a lesson. This lady was in her mid-50s. Seriously, she should have known better than to be so rude and then to keep asking for my punishment after I'd given her that first menacingly funny smile. She had to have learned something today -- I was a brutal teacher, but I like to think I was an effective one, too.

So, yes: chemo days are the best. I mean, if killing cancer and getting buff and spending time with my favorite people isn't fun enough for one day, I get the gift of this total fool and laughed until I cried. That's what I call perfection.

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