Posted by: healingseeker | June 11, 2010

Things have improved. Besides, I only have one more chemo session to go.

11 June 2010

Things have improved. Besides, I only have one more chemo session to go. Woo-hoo!

First to backtrack just a bit. Last time I wrote,  I was anticipating getting a root canal on Tuesday, June 8th.  I had to wait all the way from June 13th when I made my emergency dental appointment for severe tooth pain until June  8th to get the root canal. Thankfully, my new dentist in Greeneville, TN, Dr. Melissa Armbrista, prescribed Penicillin and Loritab to take every four hours in the meantime. Those pills plus Tylenol really helped. I got one refill of each. I finished up the Loritab eventually. By then, In only needed to take the Penicillin once a day as the tooth pain had been numbed. The root canal would be for a lower back left molar.

June 8th finally came. I drove to Johnson City, TN, to get my root canal from a Dr. Keith Elliott. He is known as an Endodontic Specialist. He even has a website at http://www.newsouthendo.com/johnson-city-tn-endodontist/endodontist-dr-elliott.html. He guaranteed no pain during the procedure. I was relieved to hear that as I seemed to recall having a lot of tooth pain on my previous two root canals I had in Knoxville – back where I used to live. The only painful part was the two Novocain shots. I had gas administered during the procedure which helped immensely. After the procedure was over, they suggested I take three Advil or three Aleve three times a day. I noticed a little tenderness after the numbness wore off the first day. I had no pain thereafter. Dr. Elliott actually called me the evening after to find out how I was feeling. I thought that was very thoughtful. It turns out that both his sister-in-law and mother-in-law had gone through breast cancer. Oh, by the way, he closed up the root canal with a permanent filling. I am actually able to chew on both sides of my mouth now. I will get my temporary crown on Thursday, June 17th. Sometime after that, when it is ready, I will get my permanent crown.

My oncologist, Dr. Dharmen Patel, suggested they might have to put off my June 10th chemo session should the root canal have been too invasive. Dr. Elliott told me I did not bleed at all. When Dr. Patel’s nurses took my blood counts, they came back closer to normal. Therefore, I have now had 7 out of my 8 chemo treatments. Thanks to all the pills I am taking, so far, no side effects the morning after. I go this afternoon to get my Neulasta shot which helps raise my white blood cell counts. So as of now, I am doing fine.

I cannot tell you how exciting it is to know that I have only one more chemo treatment to go. That is scheduled for the first day of July 2010.

Oh, one other rather strange bit of news. I had to take my Saturn in for repairs a while back. The clerk at the Saturn service department has a thirteen-year-old niece. Her father accused her of being pregnant as her stomach was pooching way out. Jade, the daughter, assured her father that she had never had sex. It turns out that she has both ovarian cancer and breast cancer at age 13. Huh? She is currently going  through chemo. Her mother got her head shaved to keep her bald daughter company. The girl is in good spirits and doing fairly well. Please send some prayers in her direction.

Very slowly, my hair is starting to grow back in. I have probably 1/8 of an inch of hair on the top of my head and ¼ of an inch in places on the back of my head. It is not long enough for me to see. Randy, my husband, thinks it is growing back blond. I was born blond. Of course, it could be a light color of gray. I cannot yet see it in the mirror as it is too short. I can only feel it.

I have only worn my wig twice so far. Once, I wore it for practice to make certain I had the hang of how to wear it. Randy and I had taken my parents out for a late Mother’s Day – early Father’s Day lunch. I walked out to the car to greet him. Mom had the funniest look on her face trying to recognize who I was. Dad figured it out first. I don’t look like myself. The wig is shoulder length with straight blond hair and bangs. That day, I wore the stocking cap they gave me to wear under it. That stocking camp was so tight that it really put a lot of pressure on my head for over an hour that kind of felt like a headache.

Then, on June 1st, wearing my wig minus the stocking cap, I drove nearly three hours to Chattanooga, to do my first storytelling gig in a little over 6 months. I performed two shows at a Summer Camp at a Baptist Bible church. Other than feeling really hot performing, both shows went great. One was for 1st  to 6th graders. The other was for age 3 to 5. They liked me enough that they asked me to come back on June 28th. I cannot tell you how exciting it is to realize that there is starting to be life beyond breast cancer.

I also will be telling stories again for the Summer Reading program for two of the libraries that I performed for last summer. Most exciting of all, the Osage Indians have scheduled a Child Literacy conference near the end of July. They are actually going to fly me out to Bartlesville, OK (about 45 minutes or so from Tulsa) to teach two ninety-minute workshops using Magnet Board tales for child care providers. They are putting me up at a Holiday Inn Express and providing me with a Hertz rental car and providing a stipend for my food and gasoline plus my fee. I am thrilled out of my gourd about this. God is really orchestrating this so beautifully for me. It is a beautiful demonstration that my total focus does not have to be breast cancer from now on. What a true blessing! I will wear my wig for all these events. Other than that, I wear my scarf or hat daily.

When I return, I will have my double Mastectomy plus full Hysterectomy to remove the benign grapefruit-size Fibroid Tumors around the first week of August. I start the daily Radiation treatments probably 4 to 6 weeks later. They will be Monday through Friday for 6 to 7 weeks.  I am taking this one step at a time.

Thank you so very much for all your prayers and support. I am so grateful to all of you. I credit the power of prayer for how well things have gone so far and how well they will continue to go. God is so good!

Much love and blessings to you all,
Debbie


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