Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Say WHAT!?!!

With a little help from PlanetCancer, Chemochicks, and personal experiences....

Excuse me? yeah... people have ACTUALLY said:

1. (insert relative here) Died from that
2. You should try (raw food diet, vegan diet, insert crazy diet here)
3. Its Hodgkins?  Like they always say, if you HAVE to get cancer... this would be the one i'd choose.
4. Nice haircut (thanks, its chemo hair) my friend had cancer, he didnt lose his hair (obviously he didnt get the good stuff)
5. Now you can lose those extra pounds!
6. You should try my (acupuncturist, chiropractor, insert holistic alternative treatment here)
7. You look good for having cancer! (thanks?)

8. Well didnt you keep with your regular check ups? - uh.. are you seriously blaming the victim here? 
9. Maybe it was all the (drinking, smoking, fast food, insert bad habit here)
10. Excuse me sir, you're in the ladies room. (yeah. bad)
11. Did you know, when a dog has chemo it doesnt lose its hair?

12.  AND MOST IMPORTANTLY... It seems like everyday that someone tells us about how they know someone who knows someone who has cancer, or is going through some treatment for something. To us, it doesn't sound like an interesting tidbit of news, but more like "oh, this random cancer fact reminded me of you."

But dont feel bad friends.  We all have brain farts, we all say stupid things and later feel like a TARD for doing so..  No worries..  I had fun laughing at you behind your back with my other cnacer friends.  So we can all put it behind us.  You feel bad, I laugh about it.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Is it the swine flu?

Where to begin.   Cody caught SOMETHING on Monday.  Guess hes not gonna make it to my next treatment (Tuesday).  Naturally, I start disinfecting everything in our apartment.  I find myself so paranoid not to get sick.  I'm using lysol wipes immediately after he touches something.  Crazy?  I think not.  While me and my dad go to my treatment, Cody packs up and heads to his parents house to get over the bug he'd gotten.

Now the day after chemo (and my flu shot!), my mom comes over to keep me company... and sure enough (cough cough!)  SHIT!

They say if your temperature reaches 100.5 or higher, call immediately.  Mom stayed over to make sure I was ok, and it was necessary for her to do so.  I no sooner woke her up at 630am with a fever of 100.6.  Please god help me avoid hospitalization!  She hops on the phone, could it be the swine flu?

Swine flu symptoms:
Fatigue - Hard to say considering I JUST had chemo, whether or not the fatigue is a symptom of H1N1
Dizziness when standing - Nope
Cough - I've got a horrible cough..  its the first symptom I had.
Fever - Yikes!  I hit 100.8

A little tamiflu here, antibiotics there, and tylenol every 6 hours to keep the fever at bay.  Moms are the best at taking care of their sick children.  Mom went grocery shopping, made me soup, bought a humidifier, did my laundry, disinfected everything again...  I love my mom!

Codys fever broke, and we had to wait 24hours after his fever broke for him to come home.  He got home last night, I was soo happy to see him.

My fever peaked again last night, but dropped this morning.  So now I just feel like i've gotten a nasty cold.  But i'm semi functional.  Thanking god I didnt have to go to the hospital, i've heard horror stories of being stuck there for days.

I've finished cycle 2!  Slowly but surely, i'm getting through this nightmare.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Amazing how liberating it is to just get it overwith.
All day Saturday, I was an emotional wreck.  My hair was falling out twice as fast after chemo 3.  Cody finally got me to stand up to my greatest fear of losing my hair, and dragged me (practically kicking and screaming) to the salon.

We went to Hanas Wig Boutique, with Mom Dad and Sarah.  Wigs everywhere, extremely intimidating.  The staff there were extremely helpful and supportive, knowing exactly how hard it was for me to just BE THERE.  Tried a couple wigs on, examined the hair I did have, and how quickly it would fall out.  Hana herself came by, and shes a cancer survivor! so it was comforting having her help me.  Finally settled on a wig about the same length and color as my natural hair.  Then out came the shaver (or whatever its called).   I cried as my beautiful blonde locks were shaved off my head.  I think everybody cried.

This seriously teaches me a huge lesson on VANITY.  Gives me a new appreciation for those who up and shave their heads BEFORE they start chemo. 
Those I love, will still love me, hair or no hair.

I hope the 1/2 inch of hair I do have left, grows just a little, so I can at least sport a mo-hawk.  Give this awful haircut a little pizzaz!

I did notice how many freakin shampoo and hair color commercials there are though.  Which will be frustrating for the next few months.  And I do pay more attention to the people around me in public places.   Is her hair real or fake?  How many other bald people are in the room?  It was extremely comforting when codys mom came over yesterday to take us shopping, and she had no idea my wig, was a wig!  Reassuring to say the least. 

Stay tuned for pictures.  When I bring myself to take some.  Dont worry, I eventually will.  Promise.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Begin Cycle 2

Wasnt so much a happy camper this time around.  It was my first visit with my Oncologist since starting treatment.  She came in, checked out my lymph nodes (neck, under arms, etc..)  and said "i'll be right back, I have to check on something"  as she left the room.   No "lookin good!" or "i'm seeing progress!"  just a be right back.

Naturally I start to panic, pacing in the exam room.  Wondering WTF.  She kept me in there for a good 20min before coming back with my mom and sister.  Nothings wrong, no need to panic, just went to get your family from the waiting room.  Here I am sweating bullets, on the verge of crying.  NOT FUNNY.

But good news is, chemo is working!  swelling of my lymph nodes have noticablly decreased.  Few questions I have for my favorite onc..
-Yes the hair loss will get worse
-Yes you will most likely need radiation (short term though)
-Yes you are going through menopause, temporarily, only during treatment.  Which explains the emotional spells, and hot flashes.

So all in all,  got both good and bad news.  I was praying the hair loss wouldnt get worse, but woke up with a pillow of hair on my pillow.  Oh well,  I'm slowly but surely coming to terms with it.  IT WILL GROW BACK.  And the treatment is working.  Thats ALL I NEEDED TO KNOW to lower stress levels and kick this hodgkins lymphoma ASS.

Maybe i'll go brunette, Cody likes brunette.  Or maybe pink?  Might as well have fun with it. 

I'll post pics when I decide to shave it all, and invest into some crazy wigs.