Saturday, November 14, 2009

New York And Beyond

New York had a lot of good moments. Angela and I saw some Broadway shows, went to the Opera, saw a TV show taping and did some shopping. Unfortunately it became evident that my depression and anxiety was still going strong. There were many hours when I felt unable to enjoy myself and Angela and I spent a lot of time in our hotel room talking and trying to address my fears and worries. It seamed that I did not take last Thursdays results well at all. Even though I understand that a lot of the treatment has been successful (most of the cancer seems to be gone), I am also upset about the possibility of 2 cm of cancer that could still be left in the growth in my tongue. I realized that there is a good chance for surgery which would be painful and could mean permanent swallowing, eating and talking disability. I somehow resent the thought that, after all my suffering this summer, there is still more to come. At this point in the game my mind is just unable to deal with that and I am sinking deeper into a depression every day.
After we got back I went off to spend the weekend with some friends at a cottage where my dear friend Dick is arranging a yearly get together where we make music and just have a good time. So far I haven't been able to socialize much. I find myself sitting in the background by myself a lot and indulge myself in my overwhelming sadness. I can't help but mourn the playful and worry free life I once used to know. I cry a lot these days.
On Tuesday I will have my PET scan. With this scan they can determine (by chemical reactions) if the growth in my mouth has living cancer cells in it or not. Unfortunately this technology has a lot of space for error so there might not be any conclusive results. For this reason I am getting myself ready for the potential of surgery.
Poor Angela has to carry all of my emotional weight and is still able to make me feel better at times. She always knows just what to say to comfort me. I am, however, worried that she won't be able to keep this up much longer.
So, life is tough these days. And I am bracing myself for it to get tougher...


kevin Aichele said...


I am so sorry that you are feeling so low and struggling with the heaviness of your situation so deeply. I don't have any wise words but know that I love you and am still praying for and thinking of you. I still feel in my gut that this is all going to be okay and that your 2cm lump is harmless and soon to be a memory. I just feel that in my heart.
You are so lucky and blessed to have such an amazing friend and wife like Angela.
This road is sure long but you are strong enough to get through to the end. It takes a lot of strength just to be so open and honest about your feelings of depression and brokenness.
Keep fighting. I will be thinking of you on Tuesday.

Love you!

Wendy Broadfoot said...

How can we ever thank you for your honesty and openness--you are such an amazing man, Olaf. How great that you and Angela were able to spend time in New York--at least you had some memorable diversions. Depression is such an awful thing--I know how it can eat you up and take over your life--I have been on antidepressants for a few years, and they do help, but I never had to deal with fears such as yours.
I ache for you and hope that good news is just around the corner.
Take Care

Richard said...

I miss being there for our talks! REALLY miss them in light of your last entry! The strength that you've shown over the past months is monumental and focused us all on the physical challenges. Now, I perceive, you're having to deal with emotional challenges. I have, surprisingly, no advice to offer. I know your strength. I know your fortitude and I know your spirit! Those are the only things that can get you through this internally! Externally, you have ANGEL-a, and what a gift she IS! That's a great combination, Olaf! I know you're struggling right now, and as usual, my thoughts are with you. None of my words can assuage your concerns about the tomorrows you face, but I KNOW that all of us are WITH you, even from some distance. Maybe take heart in that. Onward, my friend, into the time ahead. It WILL be better.
Love to you both -

Anonymous said...

Never, never, never, never
give up!!

Laura said...

I really do applaud your honesty Olaf. As we all try to imagine what it would be like to be going through the hell that you are living with, your allowing us to experience it just a little with you is so meaningful. I believe "depression" is that feeling of melancholy and hopelessness that has no real true cause - and that is certainly not the situation you have - you have very real and justifiable concerns and are sad, fearful and probably pretty damn angry that you have to deal with this.
I'm sad, fearful and damn angry too. And so, so anxious for this horrible time to be behind you.
I would love to give you great advice like....don't feel bad, don't feel afraid. But I can't. You and Ange are living a true nightmare and I can only empathize, sympathize and cry along with you.
Somehow though, I know in my heart that you will get through this and you will regain the worry free life you used to know. I know it.

Anonymous said...

from one muso to another in need - two words sir. if you don't mind me saying freely. (i promise, i do try to be much classier and eloquent usually) - but umm. FUCK CANCER. because after reading all your posts...knowing you are a comrade, those words are all i can think of...and is exactly why i play for a living, and can't write worth $^#%~!
and if you weren't here, in your state, i'm curious about where and what you'd be doing. no rush nor answer needed. just wondering. since reading your first post, and then being away, then coming back - i have to say, i think you are doing rather beautifully, tears, rage, love and all. bravo. xxox