August 19, 2017
Dear Friends and Family,
On August 11th, I received a new chemotherapy medicine called AC (Adriamycin Cyclophosphamide). I completed my routine blood work, covered my port with numbing cream, and met with my oncologist and pharmacist to review the possible side effects of the new chemo treatment I would be receiving. My room was ready and it was time for me to face the “Red Devil”, which is the nickname for Adriamycin because it is red. I mentioned to the nurse that I was nervous about receiving the “Red Devil” and she said, “Don’t be nervous, I call it the “Red Angel” because it helps you get better.” Notice in the picture below, the “Red Angel” is bigger and stronger than the “Red Devil”.
I laid in bed while the nurse got my medications ready. As I was laying in my bed, I was listening to music, which is something I never do, but I wanted to try to get some writing done for the blog and music usually helps me when I write. As I was laying down in the bed listening to the Lumineer Pandora station, (Pandora is a music app that chooses random songs) a song came on the station called “Let it Be” by The Beatles. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing! We recently sang “Let it Be” at Grandma Mary’s funeral in Iowa over the summer. This song was not randomly chosen by Pandora, Grandma Mary was reaching out to me from heaven telling me that everything was going to be OK and not to worry about receiving AC. I quickly showed my husband the Pandora screen and he said that he listens to that station frequently and he has never heard The Beatles played on that station before. After hearing that song I felt much better and was ready to receive my new treatment!
The nurse gave me anti-nausea medicines, anti-anxiety medicine, and steroids to prevent an allergic reaction. After I was prepped, the nurse came in with the red medicine. My friend receiving chemotherapy gave me a bravery sticker to put on my bag of medication. She said that her friend found the chemo bag stickers on Etsy. As you can see in the picture below, the medication is definitely red!
I received the second portion of my medication, Cyclophosphamide. After I received my medication, my port was cleaned and we were ready to go. We celebrated competing treatment number 13 by eating raspberry tarts for National Raspberry Tart Day!
I went back to the hospital on Saturday to receive my Neulasta shot which helps my white blood count and prevents infection. Throughout the weekend, I took anti-nausea medication. We also celebrated August birthdays at my in-law’s house and celebrated Maverick’s 11th Birthday!
The oncologist’s recommendation was to stay ahead of the nausea by taking my medicine. I felt OK during the weekend, but Monday was brutal. I didn’t feel that bad in the morning, but as the day went on, I began to feel nauseous and sick to my stomach. I continued to take the anti-nausea medication on Tuesday and Wednesday. As each day passed, I began to feel better, but not 100%– I really can’t remember the last time I have felt 100%. My next treatment is scheduled for August 25th.
I went to the eye doctor this morning because my eyes have been bothering me especially while receiving chemo (I wear glasses for distance). The eye doctor said that my vision has gotten worse, not due to chemo though. She said that the blurriness I have been experiencing is due to dry eye, so she recommended specific eye drops to use. She said my eye itchiness is due to allergies and recommended a different eye drop to use. Earlier in the week, I experienced nausea and blurry vision, which made my nausea worse. I also kept taking my glasses on and off to try to help with the nausea and blurry vision.
Also, today I washed my “garment” for the first time. I took “Gloria” to the studio to get washed and styled a few weeks ago and was given a “tutorial” of how to care for her. I used special shampoo and conditioner for “Gloria” and used a wig stand to dry “Gloria”.
With chemotherapy comes physical changes, as you can see in my pictures. The facial recognition feature on my computer no longer recognizes me, I will have to “retrain” it to recognize me, ha, ha.
My friends and I are participating in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in Houston on October 7th. The race is honoring my two roommates from college and me (we were all diagnosed with breast cancer under the age of 40). Please feel free to take a look at our team page and join us on October 7th!
Anchored in HOPE,