So, things had been going so well, and I was all excited to write a positive update for the new year. But then I had a PET scan in December and they found a new spot on a lymph node. And so begins another round of chemo.
I have been wanting to post something, and haven’t been holding out on purpose, really, but I needed some time to gather up some emotional strength and courage to put it on paper. Or on the internet for computers.
The scan was two days before we went to New Mexico with Tim’s family. So I cried for a good two days, then I pretended to forget about real life while we were on vacation, and then there was Christmas and the New Year and lots of time spent with family and friends. Good things! And then chemo was supposed to start today. So I psyched myself up and was all ready to jump in again, but then my platelets were too low, so they sent me home sans treatment.
I need to go have blood work done again on Friday, and the plan is to try again next Thursday. I guess on a good note, with the help of some wonderful supervisors, I was able to un-cancel all the work plans I had for this week. So yes, I am planning to continue to work. We will see how things go, obviously, but I plan on kicking ass again. I will do whatever I have to do, even if I hate the thought of it. And I am keeping my life as normal as possible, because this roller coaster of a battle is 90% mental.
So, since I have been blessed with the best family, friends co-workers, etc., people are already asking what we need. And this time around, I have a better idea. Plus, no one fights alone; this I know from experience. We are good in the meal department; in fact, we still have some meals in the freezer because apparently folks assumed that 20 people live in my house and cooked for a tribe 🙂 Also, I am still trying so hard to eat well, so I cook a lot from scratch and freeze extra as I go. But I know I will need encouragement and distraction, especially when I go to chemo and have to be hooked up to the dreaded snack-pack for two days. Your notes, calls, etc. are greatly appreciated, and if you have time and/or time off from work and want to join me at Hershey (or at home!) for a few hours on a treatment day(s), I’d love it.
Babysitting Alexander was helpful sometimes, too. Especially to give the grandmas a break. Those two ladies are miracle workers, and have helped us in countless ways. I don’t know where we’d be without them.
And honestly, Tim needs some kind of support. He’d probably be a little mad if he knew I was writing this (he doesn’t read my blog because he lives it), but I think he needs to talk to someone. He works all the time, and then comes home to the mess that is me. He and Alexander don’t deserve this. I’m supposed to take care of them, and here I am, so broken. So I’m open to any ideas.
The chemo regimen (if and when all goes as planned) will be slightly different than last year’s. Last year I did “FOLFOXIRI plus Avastin” for 6 months, which is pretty much the most aggressive treatment for colon cancer out there (so the doctors have said). This time, it will be “FOLFIRI plus some other drug that starts with ‘C'”. We are eliminating the one drug that caused the most side effects, but the new ‘C’ drug has plenty of new side effects to add to the mix. Such as an acne-type rash on my face and scalp. Yum. (Doc says it shouldn’t hurt or itch, but it will look ugly. And if the rash pops up, that means its working. Great, right?) Same schedule: 6 hours of chemo in the hospital, plus 48 hours of the snack-pack at home. Every two weeks. And the plan is to continue for 4 months.
And I can do it. Because I’m not fighting alone. And I will ask for help if I/we need it. I’m working on being OK with that.