Daily Archives: August 18, 2011

Chemo Superhero

I don’t think I will ever grow accustomed to being a patient here.

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Or the fact that my current doctor is no longer the friendly family doctor I had growing up, but an oncologist/hematologist. Say what?

After the first round of morning appointments yesterday, my mom and I had time to go out for lunch before I was due back to sit in the chemotherapy chair to have the poisons injected into me. I had to think very carefully about what I chose to ate, because I could be sick later and neverever want to eat it again.

Soup would be ideal in these situations. But Pho? Even better.

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I got a vegetable one with chicken added at Red Satay in Moncton. With the addition of rice noodles it’s like chicken noodle soup x100. It was the perfect pre-chemo lunch!

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Then I went back to the chemo chair. If you’re curious as to what that experience is like, I wrote about it here. The only difference today is that my vein started burning on the last drug, which is administered through a bag drip. At first the nurses and I freaked out a little because burning can indicate that the poisons are leaking out of the vein into the arm and skin. NOT GOOD! But thanks to my good blood return, we determined it was still in the vein, and that maybe the bright red Vinblastine drug earlier caused it to seize up a little. Good ole’ Vinblastine, it takes my hair, turns my pee orange and cheeks bright red, and now apparently freezes up my veins. A little saline drip with the final drug made it more bearable, but still, ouch.

Last but not least was my chest x-ray! I’m old hat at this by now and have that back area of radiology and nuclear medicine memorized. I had to don a hospital robe for this one and as soon as I put it on, I decided they were no longer constrictive fabric prisons of the sick and dying. No, my hospital robe is now my superhero cape. In it, I can beat anything!!

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I have yet to hear back on the x-ray, but for the rest of the day I imagined little superheroes in my body blasting the cancer into oblivion.

The first day after chemo isn’t so bad, but it’s days 2 and 3 afterward that really get me with nausea. So for now I’m back on the all-toast diet supplemented with fruit smoothies and veggie soups. I’ve officially gained back all the weight I lost in the hospital. Probably because I often have thoughts like “I have cancer, who gives a crap if I have extra piece of chocolate.” And really, I don’t give a crap. It makes me look healthier and not like I’m wasting away. With that said, my chemo regimen (ABVD) is actually known for causing patients to gain weight thanks to the steroids. Just another cruel joke that cancer patients not only get to be bald, but fat and bald too.

For today, I am doing absolutely nothing. Watching some mindless television…

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Old episodes of Conan make me laugh like no other. Plus, no plot to follow.

And of course, cuddle up with the pets.

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Cashew is not your typical cuddly cat, but for some reason is obsessed with sleeping on top and inside my bed. These days, she’s taken to nudging up against me in bed and sleeping there throughout the day or night.

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Maybe she’ll be my superhero sidekick?

P.S. I just want to wish all my blogging friends a fun time at the Healthy Living Summit in Philadelphia this weekend! I had a ticket could go, but am currently not allowed to travel. I will be there in spirit and have full plans to make it next year once I am in good health! Hey, at least without me there, there will be more Blue Moons to choose from at Friday night’s cocktail party ;)

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