There are a lot of things this post could be about, especially in light of my current situation. But, before you start guessing, I’ll tell you: it’s about Cheetos. That’s right. Cheetos. (Crunchy, not puffs, to be specific).
I have never liked Cheetos. I never even wanted to try one in my entire life. Yet, during my first cycle of chemo I started having strange, intense dreams about Cheetos. Finally, one night I made Mike run to the corner 7-11 to grab me a bag. Placing that first beautiful, sun-kissed orange kernel in my mouth was all that I dreamed it would be. It was amazing.
My relationship with crunchy Cheetos began that day, and has continued throughout the past three months. Even when my side effects from the chemo are worst, and I have trouble eating other foods, I never waver in my devotion to Cheetos.
Unfortunately, this fourth cycle of chemo has brought the most painful side effects yet (mostly a wrecked digestive system and all that entails). For the past few days, every thing I try to swallow brings intense pain to my raw esophagus. Since I was starving and couldn’t take anymore chicken soup, my mom, Mike, and I even made a special run to the store for smoothies (I thought about trying Ensure but couldn’t bring myself to do it). Yet, as we watched tv tonight, a familiar craving returned. My appetite no longer satisfied by the chocolate protein smoothie I was drinking, I knew only one thing would do. Mike made the all-familiar run to 7-11 and immediately upon his return I ripped open the bag of crunchy deliciousness. The first Cheetoh I ate hurt so badly as it moved down my esophagus that it brought tears to my eyes. Fortunately, the tears soon turned to joy.
Sometimes the pain is just worth it.