Thursday, May 7, 2009
Chemo #4 and Lots to Do Today
Today's photo: My hair before Chemo. It's a lot, lot shorter now, like 1/4 inch in length and need I say "sparse"? However, I'm hoping it comes back black and curly. Sometime in July/August. I mention that just in case I get my druthers! (she said with a big, big smile)
Had my fourth chemo session for Ovarian cancer yesterday. Sessions are three weeks apart. Many seem to suffer greatly with chemo but I am blessed in that I feel really, really good. Except for days 2, 3 and 4 afterwards. Those days I experience some bone and joint pains. Not bad. Not debiliating. Just enough that I empathize with my body and groan and sigh a bit. Still, I don't mind much, for I know they disappear in 3 days. I could take ibuprofen but frankly, I don't need to, and I prefer not to add one more blow to my kidneys, stomach, etc. I can deal with mild pain. No biggie! (It's my poor hubby who has to deal with the sighs!)
Today is Day 1 after. That means my energy is still good and I have lots to do today. Clean the fridge. Wash the bedsheets. Water the flowers on the deck. Cook up some apples that are getting old. Make a couple phone calls. Take salmon out of the freezer for the grill. Yum. Oh! And work on establishing a new sourdough starter. I think I killed my last batch. It lost its sourdough aroma and it no longer fermented so I had to dump it. Sigh! Thankfully, I still had some of the original dry sourdough yeast to start a new batch.)
Just because I FEEL good doesn't mean things aren't happening to my body. My blood counts fluctuate up and down and undoubtedly by early next week I'll be taking neupogen shots to boost my falling white cells. The shots can cause aches deep in the bones where the cells are made but I seem to experience only mild pain. Another sigh or two gets me by. (she said with a sighing laugh)
I thank God that my symptoms do not have me flat on my back. And, weirdly, I actually look forward to each chemo session because I know the chems they are kicking into my body are themselves kicking in to kill off cancer cells. Aren't we blessed to be living in a time of medical care that was not available to our ancestors!
Just a note if you are politically active. Senator Ted Kennedy (Dem-Mass.) and Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson (Rep-Texas) are co-sponsors of a bill (S-717) that would overhaul the 1971 National Cancer Act. The bill's intent is to improve early detection, improve insurance coverage for clinical trial treatments, encourage use of biomarker tests which might provide early detection, etc. You can read more about this at Medical News Today. I was pleased to see this bill sponsored by a leading Dem and a leading Republican. Go BiPartisanship!