This week I’m at an Educational Technology conference – Emerging Technologies for Online Learning (or #et4online). This was the last academic conference I went to before my breast cancer diagnosis put a halt to all my travel, so it is somewhat fitting that it is the first conference that I travelled to.
Part of the experience is great. I spent all day talking about educational technology stuff. I’m involved in a really fun project where I’m helping to bring my friend Maha from Egypt to some of the informal portions of the conference – helping her get some one-to-one time with various speakers – which is also meaning that I’m getting to meet a lot more cool people (you can see our video hangouts on air here – https://storify.com/rjhogue/et4buddy-with-rjhogue-and-bali-maha).
The thing is, none of them ask me about cancer. None! I found myself wondering if they actually know, and if they don’t know, then I find myself thinking “they must think I have the stupidest bad haircut ever” .. cause I have chemo hair which is frizzy and sticks up – oh how I yearn for chemo curls! It is completely uncontrollable – trust me, I’ve tried.
I know that several of the women do know my story – they have commented on this blog, they have gone out of their way to make me feel welcome and supported (Thanks so much Whitney and Robin – you two are amazing!). I do wonder, however, especially when chatting with men, if they have any clue what my last year has involved. And just how amazing it is that I’m here at all.
I did pretty good for most of today – keeping up with the pace of things – until about 5pm. Then I started to crash. I didn’t sleep as well as I would have liked last night. I’m a bit jet lagged (two hour time change doesn’t help), but more, I think it is just that I don’t yet have the energy that I used to have. My body is still healing. It is still recovering. I cannot spend all day running around at the conference and expect to still have energy for evening social activities. I certainly do not have the energy in me to go out drinking and then still be functioning tomorrow. Nope, a good nights sleep is what I need – but I do feel like I’m missing out on some great social opportunities.
Since I have social activity plans tomorrow night (women in Ed Tech dinner), I’ll attempt to take an hour of down time at some point tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully that will be enough. I also need to spend a little more time sitting and less time standing … that is the plan … that and going to sleep now! Good night!