Yes, it did. Now, every new ache, pain, or twinge, has me scared that it’s more metastasis, or a weird side effect of chemo. No matter how much I tell myself it’s neither of those things, the thought still flits through my head. Headache? Must be brain metastasis. Backache? Must be metastasis to the bones. Stomachache? Well, you get the picture.
I think I have lost the ability to remember having those same aches/pains/twinges before I had chemo or cancer. It’s strange how our memory can play tricks on us. I wake up some mornings with my fingers asleep because of the position I was sleeping in, and then I get scared that it must be a side effect from the chemo. (One of the possible side effects is numbness of fingers or toes.) Of course, it’s gone within seconds of waking up and I know it has nothing to do with the chemo.
Sometimes, ignorance is bliss. If I didn’t know all the possible side effects, or how fast lung cancer can metastasize, would I be this paranoid? Probably not. But I do know. It’s important to know the side effects that could be a major problem; but then I worry that major side effects may mean changing the chemo regimen again, and I wonder how many times we can do that before running out of options.
So in the meantime, with every new ache and pain and twinge, I take a deep breath, tell myself that all is well, and go about my day.