Posted by: healingseeker | March 28, 2010

Update after 10 days from 3rd Chemo Treatment

28 March 2010

It’s been 10 days since my 3rd Red Devil Chemo Treatment. My body does appear to have built up a tolerance level to chemo in several ways. I never did experience any nausea. The side effects have been minimal. All in all, I have felt pretty good.

Negative side effects:
* After getting my Neulasta shot the day after chemo, I experienced some back pain. Fortunately, our couch has a vibrating feature plus it reclines. I turned the vibration mode on, laid back, and relaxed. The back pain eventually went away. The over-the-counter back pain pills I laid out to take plus Aleve became unnecessary. I wrapped them in aluminum foil and put them away for a future time of need.

* I have been tired. I have had to take some naps. I sometimes cannot finish a television show without falling asleep. I found it necessary to give myself a couple of days where I didn’t try to accomplish very much of anything at all.

* The first two days, I was able to fully taste all food. The past several days, I have been chasing after food I can taste. Some foods I can taste. I mostly cannot taste things like cornbread or rolls or crackers. My tongue feels a bit burnt. Yesterday, that feeling has increased to the point where there is a metallic feeling in my mouth. I drank some water yesterday that tasted spoiled. I finally took that mouth-numbing liquid medicine before going to bed last night. It helped some. Right now, my mouth is full of that metallic feeling again.

Thursday, March 25th, I got my blood tested. My white blood cell count was at its lowest point yet. They gave me a face mask to wear should I find myself near people who were coughing. I never did find that necessary. That would explain why I would feel extra tired. Dr. Patel asked me to take that pill I call my fever pill for seven days. Last time he did that, my blood levels were back to normal range a week later. I’m sure they will be fine by April 1st when I get my blood tested again.

That night, I guess I was at an all-time low. I wasn’t low enough that I fully gave in to a sixth pity party; however, I did have a few minutes of having to exert a strong effort to feel good again. I guess it started when I was getting ready for bed. I looked in the mirror and saw my bald head and dented left boob and found myself grousing, “Why do I have to have cancer?” As long as I can focus my attention on being noble and being the willing volunteer to go through this journey so other women will not have to do so and being helpful to others, I feel okay. That night, I was not feeling all that noble or strong. I found myself wishing I could have my old life back. I’m sure that is natural and normal for me to have that wish. I managed to get myself stabilized after a time.

Positive side effects:
* I don’t have to shave my legs right now. Woo-hoo!
* I’ve found some cute hats and scarves to wear. I feel so comfortable wearing hats that I have not yet been tempted to wear the wig I was given.
* I’ve lost ten pounds.
* My husband and I are making time to have quality time together with lovely meals, great talks, and joyful moments together. Our marriage is flourishing.
* I’m making time to read more and do things that I relish and enjoy.
* I’m better at pacing myself to do things that I need to do like laundry, getting ready for the tax man, writing assignments, housework, etc.
* I’m enjoying getting together with friends and family members. I got to see my cousin from North Carolina who came to nearby Knoxville recently. My parents and I will go visit my younger brother and his family Easter weekend. I also will be getting together with one of my best girlfriends soon for lunch.

I write for Examiner.com as a School Conflict Resolution Specialist. Yesterday, I received an e-mail message from a teenage girl from the UK who is being bullied. I decided to start an Ask DJ Lyons about Bullying column beginning with her question and my response. I felt the ideas absolutely flowing. Here’s the link in case you would like to read her question and my response:
Ask DJ Lyons about Bullying: Question #1

I intend to write some more columns using questions I have gotten from elementary students who attended my Be Bully Free workshops during 2009. It feels good to involve myself in a new project like this. Working to help others keeps my mind off my problems. Hopefully, my readers on Examiner.com will send me new questions to write about in this column.

Over all, I am doing good. The metallic feeling is an annoyance; however, it is ignorable for the most part. I am thrilled that I mostly am without side effects. I also can manage 1 ½ to 2 meals a day. I drink a lot of water which I’m certain helps. The only other drink I sometimes have is Ginger Ale.

Thank you to everyone who is praying for me and for my husband Randy as a caregiver of two women: his mother in the nursing home and me with breast cancer. I love you all! I wish you a very joyful rest of the weekend and the coming week.

With so much love,
Healing Seeker aka Debbie


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