Friday, April 10, 2009

Getting ready for next weekend

I've been meaning to do some sewing for the conference in Philadelphia this coming weekend but I just haven't been able to make myself do enough work on it. I suppose if I worked flat out for the rest of the week I'd be able to get the dress done... but I'm trying to conserve energy for the conference.

It turns out that there are 25 or 30 women with mets from the YSC board going to this conference - that's a lot! Most of them, including me, are arriving Friday night and are all going to get together and talk. No non-mets people allowed to that talk! It's limiting to have non-mets people present when women with mets are talking; too often they don't want to hear some of the things we need to talk about. Like the treatments and the fears. And the terminal aspect of the illness. Too many non-mets women try to minimize these things because it scares them.... but we need to talk about them, too. And I, at least, don't want to censor myself.

Some of the women who were at Westport with me will be at the conference. Three of them have taken a turn for the worse: one with dural mets, one with possible brain mets, and one whose cancer has gone everywhere - her bones, her brain, her liver, and it was already in her lungs. Once cancer goes to so many places, time is very, very short. I don't think I'm alone in thinking that this will be the last time I see this woman.

Of course there's more to the conference than visiting.... there's the conference itself :) I'm hoping to learn something from the workshops and to meet even more women with mets from all over the place.

So you can see how the trip might be exhausting, between being at the conference for two full days and learning stuff and the emotional aspect of being around women who aren't doing well, and why I want to be sure I have enough energy built up beforehand so that I'm not exhausted while I'm there or afterwards. In Westport I was tired before the weekend was out because I did too much, too fast. This time, I'll go slower. And if I don't end up finishing my sewing before I go, well, I'll finish it up after the conference. It's more important to get through the conference than to sew for it.

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