Chemo (Week 12) – Just Chugging Along

Just finished my 12th chemo treatment yesterday (out of a total of 16). Only 4 more treatments left before I go to M.D. Anderson in Houston again on 9/1 and 9/2 for more tests and doctors visits. I may have more chemo once they re-evaluate the questionable spots in my liver. It’s hard to believe that 3 months of weekly chemo have flown by!

The last few rounds of chemo have hit me hard. Of course, they told me that the chemo effects would be cumulative. I’ve finally hit the point where I’m fatigued all the time, neuropathy is still increasing in hands and feet, hair is still thinning (I went scarf-shopping with my friend, Susan, just in case). But what’s really impacting me now is the fatigue. I’m napping frequently since I’m tired most of the time. It’s a bummer since I’m not used to running out of energy!! But my doctor just told me again yesterday that I’m doing incredibly well for this far along in a very aggressive chemo regimen. Good to know!

On the bright side, I’ve been able to maintain a fairly normal life so far with help from my family and friends. Thanks to all of you who have taken the girls on play dates and swimming on my chemo days, as well as other days, so I can simply take a nap. Thanks to all of you who have been sending meals – they have been a huge help. Thanks to all of you who come and hang with me in the infusion center. Thanks for all the smoothies and veggie drinks. Thanks for the continued cards – the girls just love the musical ones. The card with the singing chipmunks has been a big hit! I swear I have to listen to that card three times a day but at least I get to watch the girls dance to it!

Speaking of the girls, they seem to be holding up pretty well. They are still going to Wonders & Worries.  It’s especially helpful for them now that my chemo effects are more obvious.

The girls start school on Aug. 24th. 1st grade and 5th grade! I think I’m more nervous about the little one starting 1st grade than she is!

Doug is somehow balancing it all – work, kids, me – but it’s no surprise. He’s an amazing person and I wouldn’t be doing nearly as well without him. There are definitely highs and lows in this process and he is right there with me. I’m the luckiest woman on the planet! (OK, I admit I might be a little biased.)

I’m really looking forward to a visit from my youngest brother and his wife in a couple of weeks. The following week, two of my high school friends from CA are coming for a visit. My mom returns on August 30th. August is turning out to be a very busy month!

NEWS FLASH – Tomorrow, I’m going for my first sail of 2010!! Since this whole mess began back in January, I’ve had to lay low. First, surgery and eight weeks of recovery. Then trips to M.D. Anderson for several weeks. Then chemo started in May and I’ve had to stay out of the sun, the heat and the lake water which doesn’t add up to fun summer sailing in Texas. The girls and Doug have gone sailing many times without me but now we’re going on an evening sail since I just can’t stand being off the water anymore. Nothing clears my mind like being on the water.

Enough rambling for now. Thanks again for every little thing!

One thought on “Chemo (Week 12) – Just Chugging Along

  1. Hi Ivanna,

    My name is Gail – from New Jersey. I have PMP – I’ve had it since at least 1999 when I had surgery for a ‘tumor that exploded.’ I found out that it was PMP in Dec., 2007 and had MOAS.
    Today, I made an appt. to have a port-o-cath installed as I am about to start chemo for the first time.
    I read your posts regarding your experiences with chemo and it is a big help. Thank you and God bless you.

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