Saturday, February 8, 2014

Chemo - Round 1

"At the end of the day, all you need is hope and strength.  Hope that it will get better and strength to hold on until it does"

Chemo started Thursday.  Being in a clinical trial, I have learned that I am going to have to just roll with the punches more.  Stinks for me since I like a plan, but that didn't seem how it was going last week.  Monday I had to go to the Cancer Center for a blood draw.  Some might ask, weren't you just there on Friday for your preliminary blood work and the answer is yes...I think everyone enjoys a $50.00 copay and they think this is hilarious - us not so much.  There is one blood draw that has to be drawn between 8-9 am.  So Monday morning (day after the super bowl - good thing I was not drinking the night before) with Ryan and Justin in tow, we headed off for this quick blood draw.  Apparently Dr. Phillips didn't put the orders in, or the other side was the phlebotimist didn't know what color of cap to put on the blood draw, it was delayed.  So the Justin was sitting still, but Ryan was touching everything in site and this was really irritating to me because he is over a cold, but his cough sounds horrendous.  So the gentleman in the waiting room I could tell was not amused.  So I was following him around picking up everything he touched.  Good news is, I'm glad that Dr. Phillips and the nurses met my sons.  In fact Dr. Phillips made a comment like oh they are so cute and I responded with "yes they are my life".  Maybe her seeing my little beauties, we won't have anymore careless mistakes.  Nope, then I am told I need to come back Wednesday morning to get the trial pill to take in the presence of the trial coordinator and nurse.  Because the drug is covered under the trial, it isn't something that can be picked up at Walgreens.  I don't get the sacredness of it, I highly doubt I will slip it in someones drink or not take it.  But whatever, I show up with Ryan after dropping Justin off at school only to find out that it had not arrived yet from the Hyde Park office.  I'm not sure if it needed a police escort or what.  So I was not amused, it had snowed the night before and a phone call to say don't come would have been nice.  Side note, I was smiling on my way through the parking lot carrying my 25 pound little boy with the wind blowing and snow hitting us both in the face.  Take that cancer - I'm still able to do everything normal people can do!  Now back to it, so around noon the coordinator called and said the pills were in.  So off we went to take the pill and head back home.

Thursday morning I reported to my chemo chair at 9:00 am.  This being a new Cancer Center, I was a bit intimidated. Most chemo chairs were in private rooms with only about 6 being out with other people.  At Edwards Cancer Center I preferred to be on the floor, because I was not "sick".  But I went to a room and I felt that some that came after me that had to sit on the floor in their chairs felt like I had not earned my keep yet.  Oh well, I will be staying in a room as much as possible.  The chairs recline, they massage, they are heated, they have a TV attached to them.  I told the nurse they better not advertise or more people will want to get in there!  Yeah right!  So I have decided to try chemo without a port.  These drugs are not as dangerous should they go outside of my vein on accident.  The problem is, because of the lymph node removal in my right arm, I can't have blood draws or pressure checks with that arm.  So please root on my left arm that the veins can keep up!

Last year I worked through chemo and didn't let the side effects get to me during treatment.  Well with nothing but pinterest and facebook, as soon as I had my benedryl (used in case you have an allergic reaction to any drugs) I was out-probably had something to do with the heated seat too!  It was awesome.  Next thing I knew, I was being woken up and told to go home!  I came home and slept most of the afternoon.  Friday I was on my own with Ryan and did fine.  I was a little uneasy because I didn't have the distraction of work to keep my mind off of things.  Well the man upstairs must of felt my anxiety, because as I was leaving to take Justin to school, the church called and wanted to know if I could work on a project for them.  So I dropped Justin off and picked up my tasks from church and came home and played with Ryan and worked on stapling 120 packets together for the church.  He knew I needed something - Thank you God!  I ended up sleeping when Ryan napped and took Justin  to a school event last night.  During the night last night I woke up sweating to death and felt really sick but was fine this morning just tired.  I slept all afternoon and then played with the boys and feel great so I'm hoping that is it for this cycle. Round 2 is Thursday and then a week off.

The kids are doing okay.  I enjoy quiet time rocking Ryan to sleep.  Probably not the best habit, but this is my only time with him where he will sit still and I can either sing (he likes it so don't judge) to him or just think and pray while he dozes off.  Then Justin lays in bed with me and lately he has been asking some tough questions so that has been difficult, but in a way it makes me feel good to have that time with him and to answer the hard questions.  One question was if I knew anyone else that has had breast cancer 3 times (he says 3 times because he must think it left and is now back again).  I asked him why he asked that question and he said if someone else did before me, that would mean I will be okay because cancer can kill you.  He also told me that family is the most important thing and I agreed and he said but right now with your cancer, you are the most important thing.  I cried to him and told him that someday he will make the best husband, friend and daddy.  He has such a big heart and has so much on his plate.  I wish he could just worry about what other 6 year olds worry about.  Sad thing is, some of them might worry about losing their parents, but don't talk about it because they don't have such a scary thing in their face all the time like we do.  He is in counseling through the school and we will see how a few sessions go and see if he needs more.  Keep that little boy in your prayers!

My friend Megan and Linda have put together a funding that will help my sisters fly in when they want to or need to.  I am shocked that in the 2 days it has been up on Facebook, the outpouring of support we have received.  I now realize that growing up in a small town and keeping small town friends has helped us so much.  Not only my small town folks, but also my Garrison / Freeland and Naughton / Pondelicek family and friends up here.  I am not posting this for more money (believe me, we are off to a great start), but I have added it here for those that are not on Facebook.  I don't like to leave anyone out!  It is hard to ask for things and Don and I have been fortunate to have the financial support we need and assistance with kids, but as I have said before, this is hurting them just as much - especially because they are so far away and feel so helpless at times.

Also for those not on facebook, I have a new song, which I have also copied to here.  It has been a big hit on Facebook with my friends that have listened to it, so it is below for you all non-facebookers as well!

Well, I hate to over do it so I'm off to bed in hopes that I feel well enough in the morning to attend church and the grocery store.

Love you all!


Click here to support Amber Garrison Naughton Travel Fund by Megan Jeremy Deckwww.gofundme.comSo many people have asked what they can do at this time to help Amber Garrison Naughton while she goes through her...

Bomshel-Fight Like A Girl***I DO NOT OWN THIS SONG! NONE! ZIPPO!*** Fight Like A Girl BY!!! Bomshell I decided since it was a hard song to find i put it with lyrics. I am taking requ...

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