Sleepless nights and groundhog days………

………….says it all really!

We’re on day 4 after chemo 4 and still in the thick fog of the groundhog days.  It feels as if I am pulled down a bit further each time, but at least I know things are moving forward.  The tastebuds are missing again, and now I can also see that twang arm is more painful and stiff in the week or so following each treatment.  Marvellous!

But just a few more days, and I should be able to post more regularly.  After all there are still some missing details and updates to fill in.

And indeed hopefully, and things will be brighter again, – and I can’t wait!

Mosquito alert – multi purpose

The side effects are taking their hold now, but my mind is still processing and working away.  And there is something in particular bugging me at the moment.

Not long after the chemo, I felt the familiar nibble of a mosquito around my ankles.  Selfishly,  I am anxious not to get any mosquito borne lurgey, or any lurgey, for that matter given my reduced resistence to infection.  But what about the unsuspecting mossie?  I imagine that it got way more than it bargained for.  A double dose of chemotherapy and all its attendant side effects!!! I can see it groaning as it lurches around in its state of extreme nausea.  And the horror when it experiences the pink urine effect!!!

So listen carefully all mossies.  it is in our mutual interest to avoid each other – OK?

What a difference a day makes!

Actually, what a difference a few hours makes!  I left for the hospital this morning a nervous, chittering wreck, not sure whether to be more scared of delaying the treatment or the treatment going ahead.  And now here I am online briefly, on the other side of Chemo 4, not quite singing and dancing, but a great deal more relaxed and relieved.  It all went ahead smoothly, blood tests ok enough, and the three needle moments survived.

It’s also incredible how different it feels being half way through the chemo!  Yep – four done and four still to go.  Psychologically it feels like a huge milestone.  And even knowing I was on the brink of being halfway, yesterday and this morning, it is just not the same.  It’s a new year and i have half the chemos ticked off now,

I will now switch to another type of chemo, and this one will have different side effects to the two I have been given, and perhaps a few new ones.

I have been busy documenting the side effects of these medications and that is a treat in store for the next few days. I will also post in the next days about the wonderful Port and how the chemo process differs when the port s used.  Another treat to look out for!

But for now I am signing out for a while and back to the gallons of water to try and reduce the side effects which are heading their way towards me at breakneck speed.  Time to plan the chemo treat, I think! :)

Thanks :) :)

Stage fright

‘Tis the night before chemo…….

Oh I hate this feeling, it just doesn’t get any easier.  I’m stressed about tomorrow, I’m distracted, restless and not very patient.

First thing will be a blood test and this time I am not sure if my blood counts will be ok as I have struggled more to eat well.  The loss of my taste buds was worse after Chemo 3 and eating was a constant battle.

As usual before the treatment, half of me is so scared that the thought of a reprieve appeals.  But the other half (the bigger one) really wants to keep moving forward, towards the end of the treatment and recovery.

Well, I will know this by time tomorrow if I am allowed another Chemo treat……….and so will you!

Setting the tone for 2010 – Recovery, Discovery and Laughter!

Welcome 2010!

And what a lovely start it’s been – speaking with family in the wee and not so wee hours, and then spending the morning by the swimming pool.  Now that I have reached the milestone of being able to get in and out of the pool, I feel that my recovery is really picking up pace.

I have also been re-thinking those three words I picked yesterday to guide my year.  I have now decided on (after a lot of thought and deliberation) on three words which together, I feel are particularly apt and motivational for the coming year:

Recovery, Discovery and Laughter

These cover all areas of my life and support the need to have a balance between physical and mental, personal and professional and all relate to approaches to life, especially as I continue this long path of treatment.

Recovery – this is obvious.  I still have months ahead of heavy duty treatment.  This will be followed by long term medication and screening once (and, if we are honest, if) the oncologist and surgeon are satisfied that the breast beast has been truly banished.  It also refers to mental and emotional recovery – being able to sleep at night without waking and worrying, and being hassled by the scary thoughts.   And on another level, it could even refer to lovely white scalp which very much looks forward to being re-covered with real, if grey, hair!

Discovery - this has so many dimensions.  Most of all, it is a great way to approach absolutely everything!  There is so much to learn and discover at all levels.  Professionally it is important to be continually learn and developing, especially in my role!  Discovery is lovely way to view learning – exciting and bringing surprises.  I am also at an early stage in life and work in our new place, and I have so much to find out.  I have much to learn about the country and city we live in, and get to know our new friends.  There is a real opening for spiritual development and discovery which is appealing and healing.  Most of all, I want to make sure my eyes are really open to what is going on around me and to see the new and interesting in everyday life, rather than wallow in the tough stuff.

Laughter - this is probably not a surprise!  Many people joked when I had my surgery, that the knife did not find wherever my sense of humour was located.  Most wished it had!!!  This journey has shown me over and over that I cannot change what is happening, but I am the only one who can control how I approach it.  Humour is a tool for me, and a survival mechanism.  Of course I have cried (diagnosis time, hair loss time and other vulnerable points which are often unexpected) but whenever I can, I try and turn the wobbles into giggles.  It’s also a great excuse for truly dreadful jokes and puns so this is advance warning that 2010 will see a proactive effort to bring smiles and fun into life.

Right – that’s the theory and the easy part.  Now, how do I apply it all the to wobbles which are taking shape for Sunday’s appointment with the oncologist and the planned chemo 4?