I Barfed in a Garbage Can…

Fighting cancer this week has had its ups and downs.

I am on day 9 of round two of chemo. And it’s a lot of work. Right now I’m going in 4 days a week to get chemo, labs twice a week and a lumbar puncture once a week with doctor’s appointments in between. My chemo includes a pill twice a day, a shot in my tummy when I’m in the clinic and sometimes an IV, and an injection in my spine during my LP.

so many pills 🤪

The first week I was feeling ok from the treatments but towards the weekend I started to slow down. Nothing major just some fatigue. Then yesterday I was getting my normal belly shot and my labs came back saying I needed a blood transfusion. They gave me some blood and I decided I’m going to get those Halloween vampire teeth to wear next time. But towards the end of my transfusion, I started to feel weird and just figured I was starving since I’d been in the clinic all morning and it was lunchtime. So I rushed to the cafe to get a bite before my LP. Hunger was not the feeling because I could barely take a few bites. So I headed to the waiting room for my LP. I felt horrible and just wanted to go home. All of the sudden I knew I was going to get sick. This was a new waiting room and I couldn’t find a bathroom in time so I barfed in a garbage can. I apologized to some lady and she was very sweet. Bless her heart. Last time I barfed in a garbage can was at Fiesta Del Sol last year when I drank 1 million wines and then went on 3 sketchy spinning rides in a row. My how things have changed.

Then I had an LP. It was successful but took longer than normal because the fluid wasn’t flowing quickly like it normally does and we all know it’s not my favorite procedure. The lady that does it is very sweet and the nurses gave me cold rags to help with the nervous sweating. They gave me some Zofran to help with the nausea and then I felt better but I was beyond ready to go home. It was a long day. I had a sweet care package to come home to. Y’all keep sending me candy and I have no self-control so all that weight I lost in the hospital will be back in no time lol.

My physical therapist said she was expecting me to be worse off this week since I started such a rigorous chemo regime but was surprised with my progress.

My balance is much better and I’m managing stairs and walking longer distances. I’m on a new heart medication so that helps. But the other day my Apple TV wasn’t working so I wanted to unplug it and I couldn’t reach the plug and it was so frustrating. I finally reached it after struggling for a while and then was basically stuck in a corner on the floor. Something so simple was extremely exhausting and almost impossible and that’s something I’ll have to get used to. I wanted to cry. I’ve been fairly strong through all this just taking it as it comes but some days I just can’t believe how much my life and body has changed in a matter of months.

My hands are still numb and annoying and now my feet are too. I hate wearing socks but my feet are so sensitive to hot and cold that I have to wear socks now. My hedgehog hair is still falling out. I wish it would all just fall out already. My face is slowly getting slimmer… not as fast as I’d like but whatever my face mask covers it anyway.

I have to take a break from watching 90 Day Fiance because who knew there were all these spin-offs that suck you in?! I am deep in the rabbit hole but these crazies are stressing me out so I can’t do anymore. So any new TV suggestions would be appreciated. 🙂 Mahalos

Tootles.

Flower Power Reminder

Right now my face is still puffy and large from the prednisone and my hair is falling out and growing in at the same time so it’s patchy and weird. Needless to say, I’m not looking like myself. I almost get startled every time I look in a mirror.

I’ve been going through photos to print for a gallery wall in my new place and can’t help but feel sad about my hair. I know it’s just hair and it’ll grow back but it was such a part of my identity.

I stumbled on this French Proverb on Pinterest: “Wherever life plants you, bloom with grace”. Life has planted me here, with cancer, isolated from the world because there’s a dangerous pandemic happening and I must bloom with grace. I have to remind myself it’s all temporary. I know that I’ll be a stronger person after going through this, but it’s just hard to see the end in sight. I guess I just have to take it one day at a time.

No rain, no flowers.

I love to wear flowers in my ear and found a bunch of photos to remind myself of my essence. I’m ready to rock the bald and puffy look with the same confidence as when I have mermaid hair and a giant flower in my ear.

Just needed a little flower power reminder in this downpour.


*Just realized I added an extra O in bloom in my image. Guess I’m bloooooooming with grace. 🤣

Fighting Cancer is like a Full-Time Job

and I already have a full-time job. I’m exhausted. Luckily I can do both jobs simultaneously. I’ve learned that a lot of my appointments are mainly just waiting around so I now bring my laptop to get work done in the waiting room or during transfusions.

I’m out of the hospital! And boy is it hard work. Between scheduling appointments and visits with my oncologist, the physical therapist, the cardiologist, labs in the clinic, transfusions and procedures and I haven’t even started chemo yet! Just talking about it makes me tired.

My last day in the hospital was traumatizing. I didn’t sleep at all the night before. I needed a bone marrow biopsy and a lumbar puncture. The bone marrow biopsy was taking longer than I expected and they kept hitting a nerve that would send a shooting firework-like pain down my calves. They finally brought in another nurse practitioner to finish the job on the 3rd try. Luckily she was successful but I’m pretty sure I was shaking by this point because I couldn’t see what they were doing and it just sounded like they were using swords on my back. Between the sounds and the shooting pains, I was beyond freaked out. Then I had a 5 min break to calm down and then they had to do the lumbar puncture. I’d had two already that were a breeze but for some reason, they were having difficulty with this one. They tried several times and just couldn’t get it. Plus they hit the same nerves that sent more shooting pains to my calves. I cried a lot and they called it and were unsuccessful. It was the worst 2 hours ever. I was worried they’d keep me in the hospital another night but they still released me that day. Which might have been a bad idea.

They also cut me cold turkey from the prednisone that day. 29 days on an extremely high dose and then just stopping is insane. Usually they taper you off but they didn’t with me. The doctor warned me that I’d feel pretty bad for a couple days but he described it as a hangover. This, sir, was no hangover. It was MISERABLE. The sharp shooting pains returned to my knees in the middle of the night and my pain killers didn’t work. So they prescribed me something stronger that made me feel super confused and weird and paranoid. Everything was so uncomfortable. I was very irritable and still couldn’t sleep. I think I went 3 days without sleeping. I’d cry in the middle of the night because I was so uncomfortable and angry and sad. I felt like I should have still been in the hospital. My legs and body were so weak I could barely walk. The best way to describe it is extreme discomfort inside and out. My blankets felt too heavy. Nothing could comfort me. I never want to feel that way again.

Luckily after a few days I started feeling better. The prednisone was leaving the body. And I finally slept! It was a miracle.

I returned Monday to finish the failed lumbar puncture but this time they used an x-ray machine to determine the exact spot to go in and weird enough they had been in the right spot when they tried before so we’re not really sure why they were unsuccessful. I was just relieved to get it over with finally. I have another one next week fml.

I’m all moved in to my new house. It’s a mess right now. My bed and TV are set up but the rest is just a bunch of boxes. I need to get it furnished but that’s hard work when you’re exhausted.

I came home to a bunch of cards and care packages. Thank you everyone for all the love. It’s really overwhelming (in a good way).

My face is still very large and in charge from the prednisone. I’m still waiting for it to die down. My hair has started to fall out but not much of it. I still have a fuzzy head. My hands are very numb now and actually hurt most days. They’re super sensitive to hot and cold and the clinic is always freezing. Today I wore Ugg boots in June. That’s how cold it is in there.

Anyway enough of my ramblings… TTFN.