Tuesday, July 8, 2014

My turn

It's been a very difficult two weeks for a number of reasons. Patricia, aka PJ, of the Plog has died. She's been by my side blogging since almost the beginning. We used to talk on Sundays and compare transplant notes. She's had the same number as transplants as I, although she was treated for AML. We laughed and cried together and I will miss her very much.

Another friend is currently in the hospital after getting into a car vs. motorcycle accident. I don't have the details and hate that Chris and I are not home to visit him in the hospitals. He's been so sweet to us throughout this latest cancer endeavor and I wish I could return the favor.

Chris and I couldn't get through any of this without our friends. So many reach out, just when you need them to let you know you're not alone. My dear friend Lisa, of http://www.lisabadams.com  checks on me every day and gives me a connection to another woman who gets this whole carnival of a cancer ride. We don't always talk about our cancers which is such a balm. It's so nice to be able to talk about the small things that most people let pass by. There's a healthy dose of snark, which if you know me is a given, and I am forever grateful for her.

Now on to the stuff you're really here for. I'm on my second week of treatment post neck surgery. I've now had 6 radiation treatments and am tolerating them well.  Since I'm being irradiated on both sides, my neck is sunburned and slightly uncomfortable. I know things will get progressively worse. I'm looking forward to a sore throat, mouth sores, esophagitis (sores in the esophagus), nausea and fatigue.

I've completed two of six chemo therapy treatments. The agent I'm receiving was jokingly called "baby-chemo". I'm here to tell you there's no such thing. I thought that since I was only getting one dose a week, it wouldn't be so bad. It's bad. Apparently, cisplatin is highly emetic. Last week, I spent two days constantly vomiting. I expect the same to happen this week. Always Wednesday and Thursday, after the pre meds wear off. Chris has ensured that my weight has remained stable.

If I lose ten percent of my body weight in the first few weeks, then I will be encouraged to get a feeding tube. If mouth and throat sores become too bad, the feeding tube is still on the table. I can't heal if I don't get enough hydration and protein. If it means getting a tube, then I will. Until then, I'll do all I can to hold it off.

The doctors have warned me that the sore throat will creep up on my by the end of this week. I've already got a touch of fatigue. My hair should start falling out by the end of week three. It's already a little thinner up top. These are all temporary things and I will get through them.

I just keep telling myself 5.5 weeks. It's such a small fraction of time when you consider all of the time I lost to 2 transplants and leukemia. This is nothing in the scheme of things in terms of time.


LPC said...

5.5. weeks. You'll get through it. But boy not fun in the meantime.

Mara said...

I am so sorry to hear about your friend. *hugs*

susiegb said...

Thinking of you both ... You can get through this and out the other side ... Your pussycats will help with cuddles like my one does!

Ronni Gordon said...

Of course I share your feelings about PJ. It is very hard. About the feeding tube: I really didn't like the idea of it, but after I got one during my last bout I was kind of relieved because I didn't have to worry about swallowing anymore.

Laurie Woo said...

Seconding Ronni about feeding tube. It was a HUGE relief, and overall not too bad. Got mine removed 3 months post treatment. It took me that long to force myself to swallow enough calories by mouth one again.

Nancy said...

Ann, I'm sorry about PJ and your friend who got in a motorcycle accident.

I'm glad you are tolerating the radiation treatments. I'm sorry about the "sunburn" and the things to come. But, you will get through this. 5.5 weeks and we are counting down with you Ann. Hang in there my dear.
xoxoxo Nancy

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry about our PJ754