Wednesday, April 05, 2006

My Mom Has Chemo Brain

Originally sent 10/31/04:


> She seems to be managing, though weak
> and tires easily. What's your take?

She sure does tire easily and she is managing; both are true. It's a good think my Dad likes to cook. Chemo makes people weak and tired. Yesterday we went to deliver two loaves of wheat-free zucchini bread and she was on the couch, with golf on the TV, out like a light. Last weekend we came to give her a couple of relaxation CDs for a belated b'day gift, but we had to leave them with my dad because she was out like a light. True to chemotherapy she's been sleeping a lot lately.

On Mom's b'day Donna and I visited and she was very animated. More so than I've ever seen her in my life. It's the "chemo brain". It was as if she was a little drunk (which we both know is impossible). She repeated herself, lost track of conversations, changed subjects mid-sentence, revealed little secrets, expressed strong opinions on a variety of subjects, and laughed a lot. She said she was thinking of having a party on the day her hair is supposed to fall out. I half expected her to break out the single-malt scotch that she was "secretly" hiding under the sink and offer us a wee drink.

One of the things she revealed was that she's been a handbag & shoes junkie all her life. This was after she let us know that she really liked Donna's wide rectangular red pleather handbag. Upon getting up to leave she told Donna not to forget it and added that if she did leave it here she wouldn't get it back. I couldn't believe what I was hearing, my Mom was being mischievous. This has never happened before in the all the years I'd known her. Chemo-brain revealed a side of her that I now think has been un-consciously suppressed most of her adult life.

See you during X-mas. Give Ethan our love.

Love, Joe

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