3.19.2012

Coming in Fourth

My boy toy could not keep up with his commitment to be with me for every treatment thanks to a meeting, so my mother filled in. I think she appreciated the people watching offered by the infusion room more than he does. Men just don't appreciate good people watching these days. She especially enjoyed my two trips to the bathroom when I was able to bless all the little ol' men in my alcove with my red jeans. They were watching the jeans. She was watching them.

Boosting troop morale
Apparently they were a hit for the prostate cancer crowd. Glad I could do something to help the cause. Sometimes it pays to be the youngest person in the room by decades.

This was by far the "easiest" round in that I stayed on top of the nausea meds like white on rice and I managed to get out of bed for a few hours during my 48 "chemo coma." Normally, opening my eyes is a challenge all its own. It's almost like I have the light sensitivity of a migraine minus the actual migraine. Not sure why it was "easier," but I can assure you it wasn't for a lack of dosage!

I got the dosage talk from my oncologist's physician's assistant (PA) on Wednesday. The good doctor understandably likes to give his younger patients the "full dose" of chemo because we "can handle it." Understandable and fair. Apparently because I am a young buck (or doe), I need to suck it up and deal with the misery. Not that I was asking for some relief. I'm all about the pain!

Party in my arm!
As miserable as this experience is in so many ways, I don't want to finish my treatment with any regrets that I didn't do all I could to keep The Enemy from coming back. There's no doubt that it's a possibility, but I want to know that I did all I could to shrink my chances.

With that said, I may be skipping a week in the near future in an attempt to get my blood counts up. As expected, I keep dropping and may be nominated for a booster shot this Wednesday when I go in for my CBC (complete blood count). If I get a booster, I can't get another round of chemo within the week. I can't remember if that had something directly to do with the shot or if they just like to give your body an extra week to get those blood counts up.

When I see how low my numbers are, I'm shocked considering how normal I feel during my 8 glorious days. My front line of defense is dismal, yet I've survived fevers from both boys and a two week run of a viral infection from each in recent weeks.

Frankly, as eager as I am to get this over with, I would welcome an extra week of feeling normal. Currently I seem to be under the chemo spell of misery (to some degree) for 6 days. 6 down. 8 up. That's explains the long silence on the blog. Do the math and hopefully tomorrow means day 1 of greatness.

Pump disconnecting hipsters.
The first 48 hours are obviously the worse, and then I continue to battle the nausea, fatigue and weird things my hands do for another 4 days. Yes, you may have seen me dress shopping at Nordstom yesterday, but I can assure you I came home and slept, pounded some goat cheese and crackers for dinner and then lay limp on the couch for the rest of the evening.

I think some of my amazing running mommy friends can relate to me laying limp on the couch, as many ran the Shamrock Half Marathon yesterday. And wouldn't you know I woke up, stuffed some nausea pills in my pocket, grabbed some tissues for that bloody snot and went to cheer them on. I should have tons of amazing photos to show you, but with the cold ocean air, my hands shriveled up into useless knobs and I was forced to take photos with my one working knuckle. Thank you neuropathy and cold sensitivity. You're the evil step-sisters I never wanted!

Mere yards from the Atlantic.
I did manage to rock some green toes and green jeans for the occasion, so I was at least partly festive. But all good things must come to an end and after 3 hours of standing on the sidelines and observing some post-race keg stands celebrating from these accomplished moms (of which I could not participate thanks to the cold sensitivity making anything cold feel like the death grip of a million little men in my throat.), I hit my wall and made haste for the nearest exit. Leave it to me to over extend myself.

So honored and proud and amazed at the moms who managed to raise OVER $2500 for Chris4Life Colon Cancer Fund and Shawna who raised $775 for Team Livestrong (Team Livestrong raised over $134,000 for this race!!!). The more I read about these and countless other organizations focused on helping families on the cancer journey, the more proud I am of every dollar raised and the difference I KNOW it's going to make in someone's life.

Team Mom's Gotta Run in the wee hours before the Shamrock start.

No comments: