chemo #5 & pet scan results
hello!! i can officially say that i am more than halfway through my chemotherapy treatments. what a relief that is!! i can’t even begin to describe how over it i really am. everything about it.
i am just ready to feel good again. and not just the pretend good i have been convincing myself that i feel currently… i want to actually feel good! i have done a decent job at masking pretty much any and all symptoms - whether it’s something “small” like being tired, or something larger like a migraine or nausea. my responses have become robotic - person: “how are you feeling?” me: “all things considered, pretty good! i’m just tired” [smile, laugh… because cancer is hilarious… eye roll.) …. tired… i wish that was my only problem. but let’s be honest, who really wants to hear every detail of how sucky a day in the life of having cancer really is?! what should my response be? “i feel like a bag of ass, thanks for asking!!!” … there are people that have it far worse than me, so i try to not wallow in my own self pity... because i don’t think that would be good for anyone. i also don’t feel like people really understand exactly what i am feeling… and i don’t expect them to. they see me going about my normal day and assume i am feeling ‘normal’… which isn’t always the case. but, there are little humans that still depend on me, cancer or not! and that simple fact alone is pretty much all i need as far as motivation to not let this stupid disease get the better of me.
ok! let’s move on from that little rant to the day of my pet scan… i.e. the longest day EVER. the day started with the scan… if you watched any of my instagram stories you’ll know a little about the happenings leading up to it. quiet room, disgusting drink, lots and lots of waiting… oh and also construction work happening outside of my hospital window which was kind of entertaining. i mean, who doesn’t want to hear grown men shouting at each other at 7:30 am on a friday morning?! the scan itself was fine… i did not have any scanxiety - well not during the scan anyway… leading up to it i was pretty nervous… and when it was finished the hour i waited for the results felt like a million years… but during the actual scan i just laid there thinking positive thoughts!! oh to quickly go back to scanxiety… it’s a thing… you can read all about it here.
anyway, we met with my doctor shortly after the scan finished and he wasn’t even through the doorway before he blurted out “the scan looks great! a really, really great scan!” i cannot even describe the wave of relief that i felt hearing those words. he told me he was peeking at the results while he was meeting with the patient before me and it made me like him even more than i already did! because hello, he was anxious to know the results too! makes you feel a little less like “just another patient” and more like an actual person. so! the pet scan showed that there were no more glowing lymph node cancer spots (hallelujah!) and the mass had shrunk in size significantly! the rest of my chemo treatments should take care of the remaining part of the mass. it makes all of the dreadful chemo days just a tad more tolerable because it is actually working!!!
it’s not the easiest image to understand… but it’s the only shot i managed to snap while the doctor was explaining it all to us in fancy medical terms!
once my treatments are complete i will have a month off and then will start a month of radiation therapy. that makes me slightly nervous because of the risks and side effects that come with radiation. also, the fear of the unknown… i know now what to expect with chemo but radiation is totally different. but there is no sense in stressing about that now, i will cross that bridge when i get to it. for now i will enjoy the positive results!
to recap chemo #5 - i had to wait over an hour which was not fun, i didn’t get a room with a window which also was annoying…. but i had my favorite nurse which made it a little better. since my treatment i have had my usual side effects… nausea, tiredness, feeling of mouth sores… but it all has been tolerable and if anything i’m getting used to it now. there is one thing though, i cannot STAND the smell of rubbing alcohol or regular hand sanitizer… it makes me want to vomit almost immediately. also, the smell of the soap at the hospital is enough to send me right over the edge. it’s much worse than any pregnancy sensitivity i experienced. i wonder if it will go away in time? like after my treatments are done will i be able to use purel without feeling sick to my stomach? if not, i found this a-m-a-z-i-n-g hand sanitizer while at whole foods, they also have it at thrive market! it’s lavender and smells so so good! it is linked here. it is my fav.
all in all i am feeling super positive, extremely relieved and ready to put this chapter behind me… just a few more months left and then hasta la vista, cancer & 2018!!!
i can’t finish this post without saying happy anniversary to my husband! happy 3 years, babe! i love you! 9.12.15
thank you for reading and for all of your support! xo