Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Chemo #3 out of 6 today

The my kind and good friend transported me to and from chemo. She was all coiffed, while I was in t-shirt and jeans.  I have listened to all versions of music put on an ipod for me by my friend Ken, and since he and I LOVE the same songs, could not be better.  14 years ago I married my husband Ted. I would have dropped me a long time ago, but he sticks it out. Despite cancer.  He is worn out. Maybe from lst week of school. But maybe also from the steroids keeping me up, at night all hours; I try not to clink the dishes when I unload the dishwasher, try to turn the alarm on the dryer to off…).  I weigh 137.  Some, like my daughter, think that is a little fat. But I think it is awesome.  It means I am not losing much.  My hope is I will stay fat.  My attitude will be going south, and my musings less funny.  I have only a few goals, but one is to try to be nice.  I wasn’t so good on the last round.

Bloodwork is good, my marrow seems to be rebounding well with the $6000 shot.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


Undergoing chemo is much like being a gladiator in Roman times. At least that is how it goes in my head. I am in this cool outfit with brown skin and defined muscles, my feet dirty. And I go out and fight in the field, and somehow, maybe by mere luck, defeat the dragon or whomever the opponent was. And then, everyone loves me, they throw flowers down from the stands, cheer for me, call me, feed me croissants and rich foods.  And this is great. Until I realize that because I won, I have to fight again.  In 3 weeks. I know that I may not survive the next round. But what choice do I have?  I start thinking will it hurt if I get killed? If I lose, will the crowd still love me, and cheer for me? And my body will be injured and damaged from the battles. Eventually that might weaken me to where they have to call the fight because I am just not able to put up enough of a scrum to be entertaining.  I start getting nervous.  A lot is riding on this fight. I enter the ring again tomorrow for Round 3.

Friday, August 23, 2013

We went to my daughter's meet-the-teacher. Because I feel so good and normal, I have been working like a Banshee.  I was so busy, in fact, that I forgot to switch my “Aunt Jemima” bandana scarf for the attractive “so nobody notices” wig.  I plow down the road with the windows open, only to have my son chime up from the back that I forgot to wear my hair.  Darn it. The only one who cares is my daughter. 

We get home, and I am in the front yard letting the dog go chase a squirrel. The weather is great and I finally feel good.  I see the neighbor bringing their dog out the front door. And then I realize that I forgot my hair and my scarf, and am totally bald in the front yard. I panic, but quickly adopt an “I am on a mission” stance, and walk deliberately back to the corner where the dog appears to be pooping.  I don’t know if they know (about why I am bald), and I don’t want them to call the police because a bald man/woman is in our yard checking out our dog pooping.  I just stand behind the bushes.  For a while.


"I feel good. I knew that I would."
-James Brown (and me)

Sunday, August 18, 2013

This weekend was great. Got my 12 year old son's legos, pokemon, beads, cards, dice, Harry Potter books, library books, prism, swords, flashlights, crystals, baseballs, nerf guns, ipod, either boxed to give away, or put away so we could find them. Next weekend, my daughter. No treatment this week, had my blood work which was fine. A little anemic, WBC count high (as expected, because of the $6000 shot I get after chemo). Should be smooth sailing until 8/28, Wed when I do chemo #3 (out of 6).

Saturday, August 17, 2013

I am back into having energy.  It is great. Taste still screwed up, but I can live with that.  Carried books up and down the stairs yesterday, and did fine.  Chemo also does weird things to your smell.  My child found this spray cologne somewhere in my stuff and it smells so bad. It might smell bad ordinarily, I just cannot tell, but it smells really bad now.  And at 8, her quantitative measures of amount that is desirable are questionable. I catch her in the mirror with puffs of droplets landing on her hair, arms, even the dog.  I try to love on her, but just get nauseated.  Now that I am sensitized, one molecule lifts my radar. I hid it in the cabinet, but she found it.  I think I will put it where she would never look - in her shoes on living room floor, in her laundry basket, with the healthy food in the cabinet.  In the bathroom, I smell water damage. Is it the old, or is it new?  In the kitchen I smell smoke. Is it my cheese toast on fire today or just yesterdays burn. But then yesterday, I went into the operating rooms (after being out for a while), and when I entered the orthopedic cluster (4 rooms where we do most of our stuff), that familiar smell of the ortho operating rooms hit me. I have never thought of that area as having its own smell, but it did. And it was welcome, like home, and pleasant. It was great to be back there.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Just turning corner

I think that the nausea is subsiding and I should be onto the good 2 weeks soon. Thanks to the many patients who have been flexible with their schedules.  And thanks to the many who have sent well wishes.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Chemo # 2, doing fine

Having made hay while the sun shined, I now get the bad week. I cannot complain, since I was able to jog a little at the beach, kayak a really long way for an eco tour of the marshes, and eat anything for the past 2 weeks. Having learned from the last chemo, I cancelled all work this week, except for a small clinic Tuesday morning (I felt good enough last time that I did a ton of laundry).  My boy starts school Wednesday. I am saving up energy to allow me to be strong enough to take him without a wheelchair.

And I will be back in business, with any luck, next Monday for clinic. That starts the beginning of the good 2 weeks. 2 down, 4 to go.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Sunday after vacation

My cousin brought the “living room on wheels”, a Chevy Yukon rental to the beach. Basically he drove 13 hours just to be able to bring their Boxer, Nutmeg.  But it was worth it! For the pet fee, we squished in an aged pug, our hyena Eliza, Nutmeg, and the guinea pig.  On Friday, after maximum fun was had, we piled the pets, kids, me and my cousin into the living-room-on-wheels and drove back home. Upon entering the house, we found a dead animal, brown, furry and lifeless. Oh wait, that is my hair that we shaved off before we left. I saved it to send to Locks of Love.
Reality creeps back in when I realize that I have to start the pre-medication steroids for chemo today. I should be the Roger Clemens of laundry by evening, right? Small clinic planned for Tuesday, then off for the rest of the week.

Thanks to the many, many who have done so much. I really am not worthy of all this.