After way too long, I’m finally sitting down to post an update. It’s been a long week and the updates just got pushed off until tomorrow, hence the one that got away, but I’m also expected my journaling to get carried away as well. With that in mind, I’ll start with a quick, general update for those looking for that. I am feeling better and better as I go. Now, the side effects of the treatments are a little bit of a different story, but again, really not too bad. So I continue to march on, have my down days, but really just looking to get into some sort of schedule if that proves possible. Your main takeaway though is that even taking all things into consideration, I have days that I feel normal, which is to say pretty good actually, and I have to take that as a good sign.
So, for those continuing on with me 😉, I’m sorry if anyone was concerned on my lack of posts. It wasn’t anything really bad by any means, just more me fighting against myself in this whole process of rest and taking care of yourself first, combined with some fatigue from the treatments themselves. I think in the end I really wanted to get into some sort of schedule. I knew I would need some rest after treatment, figured maybe a few days, then I could start back on deck and have a solid week and a half before the next treatment. Well, as good of plans as I thought they might have been, they didn’t quite pan out that way.
I found myself slowly going down this path that I did not want to go down. It started with me taking my planned rest, okay, I thought I would be ready. Then came the first decision that I wasn’t and needed to rest more. Tough, but I have learned at least enough to get through the first step in this process without much impact on me. But then came the next workout and the next decision I needed rest. Okay, I’m just not that easy on myself and the thoughts start to creep in. “Just push through it, you’ll be fine.” “It’s not like you “can’t” do it, it’s just probably not the best idea to go in.” It’s those type of thoughts that creep in first. But I made the right decision and rested. To make this a little shorter, I always made the decision to rest or leave if I was wrong on my decision, that wasn’t an issue. My issues just come from my internal battles. So then it was workout after workout that while at least I am back to a place I can consistently write them, I wanted to see them, but I was just too worn down.
After a while you then start to question yourself too. “Are you really that worn out or are you just being lazy now?” “Seems like this laying around doing nothing could be something you are getting a little too comfortable with now.” It’s ingrained in me to push through, to be tough, to fight. I mean, it’s part of the reason I can stand here today and why I have every expectation to be standing here 10 years from now and beyond. It’s a resilience and grit that won’t allow for anything else, except I do need those other things at times. I do need to rest and recover. I do need to fail, stumble from my own expectations even if no one else’s, in order to continue moving forward, but boy does it make for a very long week.
But after a while I did start to feel better. Able to get back on deck at workout, and even got to be at my first swim meet in over 8 months this weekend. It’s amazing how things can come around at such needed times, and this was one of those. The meet wasn’t about results though. It was just fun to be back on deck at a competition. It was fun to see where at least this small group of swimmers were in racing and get excited about what we can do next to make them better. The ability to slow down a bit and have a chat with the small group about swimming, goals, etc. Then to get to see my fellow coaches and friends, it was a good timing indeed.
I am just so blessed when it all comes down to it though. The support I receive I still can’t believe. My college roommate (we’re talking Sr year roommates, when you know two things, first they both wanted to save money, but you also know each other pretty well and respect each other a lot), his wife (actually I believe more his wife’s business, check it out on Instagram: thesucculentchicks ) and the Irvine Novaquatics organized an amazing fundraiser for TEAMjeff. Thank you all so much.
Then just some of the messages that I’ve received recently have just meant so much. Again along the lines of timing is everything, but messages reminding me to rest, to take care of myself, to give myself a break, things I know I should know but helps so much to hear others say it as well. Thank you all and thank you for those wearing the TEAMjeff bracelets.
And finally, today, on the day the Condors start their Championship run, they posted a very cool video on social media supporting TEAMjeff and my mantra. Talk about the waterworks now. I do seem to be more emotional during treatments, but what a cool thing to see. It’s such this bittersweet ride for me if I am completely honest. I’m so bummed to have missed this opportunity to be there with them and be a part of everything going on, but then it’s so great to see all of their smiling faces, see them crushing races, and being so happy for all of them. Then to get this amazing support when then have business to take care of is just so cool. They are a special group of people. Go Dors!
I’ll let you in on one more of my bad mental habits and sometimes trips me up. It’s the idea that I still can’t believe the support I receive along the way. Take for instance the haircut I mentioned a while back. Well turns out he wouldn’t accept payment because he wanted to be a part of supporting TEAMjeff. All of this just pushes me over the emotional edge (in a very good way), but then also makes me feel almost this pressure. This idea that I have all of this support behind me, of course I better get this done. I know that’s crazy and not what the support is there for at all, but just one of those things I get to work on improving for myself.
Hopefully you can tell now that I am feeling pretty good again. Even after a full Friday and a couple sessions Saturday at the US Open and then following that up with a race day early today, I am feeling really good. In fast feeling reinvigorated a bit after seeing some racing again live and in person. Just in time to get ready for treatment again this coming Wednesday, and I get to start this roller coaster all over again. This time I am ready though. I’m ready to take what comes and do what I can, when I can.
Thank you all for your support, you really do mean so much in this long journey.