My goodness how time can get away from you when things get busy!
A lot has happened since my last update. I’ve had two more chemo treatments, a doctor’s appointment, a visit from my sister and her husband and a CT scan. Busy, busy!
At last report I wasn’t feeling very good. The double whammy chemo put me down hard. My doctor wanted to see me earlier than previously scheduled, so on March 24th I went to see her. After talking about the problems I’ve been having she decided it was time to do another CT scan to see where I stand and then talk again after the results are in. (I had my CT scan April 2nd, I’ll talk more about this later.)
I would like to be able to say my last two chemo treatments weren’t too bad, as I didn’t have the problems I had with the double whammy chemo but I still don’t feel as good as I would hope. Sometimes I think I’m just getting used to feeling crappy all the time so that has just become my “normal”. I didn’t lose anymore weight, in fact I gained back 10 of the 15 pounds I had lost the second time around and my weight is holding steady. Here is a picture from one of the previous treatments.
The beautiful blanket I took with me that week was a big hit with everyone. It was made by a wonderful woman named Marcia (My son’s girlfriend’s mom). It was a gift to me from when I was originally diagnosed with breast cancer back in 2013. The front of the quilt has Tinkerbell and butterflies all over it. The back of the quilt is a beautiful royal purple.
The next pictures are of my latest chemo treatment. The blanket in these pictures was a recent gift from someone (made by Ruth C. Thank you very much!). It’s got the breast cancer ribbons with hearts on one side and pink and red hearts on the other side. This beautiful blanket was a big hit as well. I’m very fortunate to have received such wonderful gifts from so many wonderful people.
As you can see by the picture above there was another person with me at my latest chemo treatment. Say hello to my sister Becky! Becky and her husband Scott came out to California all the way from New York to visit me for a week. And let me tell you, we had such a great time! I tried to drag them to all the touristy stuff I could while they were here. We started in San Francisco, we hit Lake Tahoe and spent time just hanging out with the kids here at the house and even spent some quality time with my son’s girlfriend’s family (And what an awesome family they are!). We even went to one of the local casino’s to have lunch at the buffet. Funny story…..
While at the casino for lunch, I decided to try my hand at a slot machine. Now mind you, I don’t gamble, never have, so I really had no idea what I was doing. But I put a five dollar bill into one of the machines and then went to put in a seven cent voucher as well when my sister says, “You rolled.” Me, “No I didn’t.” Her, “Yes you did, see?” And she points to the machine. I stare at it blankly when she starts laughing and says “You won!” Me, still staring blankly, “I did??” And that’s when it caught my eye, the little spot on the screen that tells how much you have won and it reads $2.20. While I was trying to get the seven cent voucher into the machine, my hand accidentally hit the roll button and I just happened to win the spin completely by accident. So I sit there giggling and saying “Oh my gosh! I feel like cashing out right now.” In my mind this was the universe trying to send me a message, so I cashed out right then and there and my brother-in-law took my voucher to the nearest cash-out machine to get me my $6.60! I had a net win of $1.60. I was so tickled with that accidental win. And I had so much fun that day with Becky and Scott. Awesome memories! Here is a picture of the whole family together at Old Town Pizza.
I am so very grateful to have had the opportunity to spend some quality time with my family! But with every good thing there can be a little bad. For the last few weeks my blood counts have been low. That usually means I need to stay at home away from crowds of people where I can potentially pick up little germs that will make me sick. But I am the queen of throwing caution to the wind and as you can tell I didn’t play it safe and I got sick right after our trip to San Francisco. I ended up with a sore throat and an earache. Of course, being me I didn’t call the doctor right away. The day I went to have my CT scan done I also stopped by the doctors office to get my weekly blood work done and that is when I mentioned to them that I wasn’t feeling well. They immediately called in a prescription for an antibiotic. I have been taking the medicine for several days now but I still have the sore throat and am still running a low grade fever on and off. Guess it’s just going to take a little time.
Okay, so now for my CT scan. I had my scan on April 2nd and the test results came back fast, and it was surprisingly good news. There has been significant improvement with the cancer. Not only has growth stopped, but the tumors are shrinking. Now, what does that mean exactly? That is a good question. I have an appointment with my doctor again next week to discuss the results. From what research I have done on my own and what I’ve been told by at least one doctor this kind of improvement is not uncommon. Sometimes people will show great improvement for a while and then relapse as soon as the chemo ends, this is the nature of most stage 4 cancer patients. I knew going into chemo this time that this was what mostly likely would occur. You walk a winding road of temporary improvement and inevitable relapse. So while I am happy with the results, the reality is that the chemo is just buying a little time which is all it was meant to do in the first place. For me it is EXTREMELY important to keep my feet firmly grounded in reality. I don’t want anyone trying to sugar coat this and think I’m going to be some kind of “poster child” for a miracle cure. Harsh? Yes! But that is reality. I’m sure some people would call it pessimism but really I’m not pessimistic. I prepare for the worst and always, always hope for the best. But even more so, I WILL keep it real because that is how I cope. After I talk to my doctor again I will post more info.
Well I think that about covers it for now. I hope everyone had a peaceful, Happy Easter!