Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Chemo cycle 1, day 1

Me on day two with the port,
looking and feeling miserable
So today treatment finally began. Up until now it's been diagnostics and planning and weeping and cheering and otherwise preparing, but this morning is when my road to recovery really began.

We packed up everything we could last night so we'd be all ready, then set the alarm for 6:30am to put the numbing cream on and have a little breakfast before going to the infusion center. We got there and got checked in, then the nurse started setting everything up. We were praised roundly for following directions--hydrating well yesterday and properly putting on the numbing cream this morning and wearing a top that would allow them to access the port. I would not think these things would be hard to do, but I'll take praise where I can get it! BTW, although I was pretty miserable last night, the port is much more comfortable today. Putting it to use was not a cake walk, but not as bad as it would have been if we tried to start yesterday. Youch!

The chemo chain Michael made for me
Once everything was all set up, the nurse got all the IVs going--starting with some strong anti-nausea meds that were supposed to get me through tomorrow, as well as something for anxiety. Three pre-meds, then two chemo drugs, one at a time. I think there was more to it than that but I'd have to go look at my notes and I'm too lazy to get up. Then my medical oncologist's nurse sat down with us for about an hour and talked about self care, avoiding infection, what to eat and what not to, dealing with the side effects, etc. She gave us a binder with all kinds of info in it. I need a bookcase just for cancer materials!

First chemo cycle!
By the time she was done and left us, we had about an hour to go. I was sleepy from the ativan, so I drifted off. It was over before I knew it, and I felt OK walking out. I got a little pillow and a hat on the way out from a basket on the counter, made and donated by the Ladies of the Eastern Star. Sweet. We got lunch to go from Panera and brought it home. I ate my soup and baguette and decided not to push my luck and save the half sandwich until later. I ate it a couple hours later and barely got it down. I was already feeling queasy.

One down, 7 to go, baby!
As you can see, the blue is fading.
I didn't feel like losing my lunch, but my tummy was definitely upset. Michael made me some mint/ginger tea and sipping that helped. I was able to eat my dinner. Oddly, even though I didn't want to eat, as long as I was chewing and swallowing I felt OK. It was when I was done that I felt nauseous again. I wasn't supposed to have to take my anti-nausea pills until tomorrow, but the doc said to take them if I need to, so I did. I also sucked on a peppermint candy, which helped. So, right now I'm feeling delicate but not too bad. Sweet Michael is on his way back from Trader Joe's with some ginger chews that are supposed to be very helpful.

Tomorrow I have to go back and get a shot to keep my white blood cell count up. Then I have a reprieve until the 29th.

I've said it before, but I'll say it again. Michael is a godsend. He is taking the very best care of me, making sure I follow instructions to the letter, getting me whatever I need, letting me cry when I need to. I am so thankful!


  1. Tough day and you made it through like a champ! Props, hugs and admiration!

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  3. Tough day and you made it through like a champ! Props, hugs and admiration!

  4. Hope you are still feeling okay and tomorrow isn't bad. Definitely try to stay ahead of the nausea.

  5. You are doing great is seems! I hope the anti nausea meds work well for you.

  6. Looking good!

  7. You look wonderful! Glad you are getting wonderful care. Bought Encore a pink rimmed fly mask with breast cancer ribbon in your honor... sending positive thoughts hugs....

    1. That is so sweet....and thank you for the compliment!

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