Sunday, January 31, 2010

Weekend Update

I am coming to the end of my first 21 day cycle which is the time, I am told, that I will feel the best in each cycle.  Here's an update on the minutae of living with chemo and cancer:

  1. My hair finally started to fall out yesterday.  I had hoped I would be the one in a million who were spared, but no.  The odd thing is that my scalp actually hurts a little.  I woke up the other night aware of how sensitive it was from my just lying on it.  
  2. I am eating much much better.  Maybe a bit too much.  I am hungry a lot of the time and had to get Paul up yesterday morning early to fix breakfast because I was hungry and nauseated.  I still have a more restricted diet than usual but I have had a few of my beloved Starbucks lattes (nonfat, decaf) this week.  I have developed a passion for sliced apples and cheese.  I also seem to do well with scrambled eggs even during the worst of the nausea.  Hope that keeps because a few things have not worked (like a bagel that they had at the hospital).  
  3. The nausea has also subsided but has not gone away altogether.  I have cut way back on nausea meds but still have to take them at least once a day.  I am a little surprised because most of what I have read says the nausea from the chemo should be gone after 4-5 days.  I guess I am more susceptible to nausea anyway given how sick I was during my pregnancies.  Crackers do not help but those lovely little Reeds ginger chews do.  One of the nurses said that if my white cell count and platelets dropped I might experience some nausea too.  That was most likely to happen starting about day 11 and building up through the end of the cycle so that may explain the more recent nausea.
  4. I am paranoid about getting sick.  My mother in law has a really bad cough and cold.  She is coughing into her hands and touching surfaces all over downstairs (including the kitchen).  I am hiding in my bedroom.
  5. I have been feeling well enough to read and even do a little work but not as much work as my boss would like.  He made a big deal about my not working during disability and that ended as soon as he had to take over about half of my work.  In fact, although he told me not to put anything concerning work I did in writing, he sent me an email instructing me to do a written summary of a conference call I covered this week.  So much for stealth working.  
  6. I have been reasonably upbeat so far.  I only had one bout of the blues the other day when I spent the day in my room pretty much alone.  Paul's urologist apparently did a survey of medical literature on the effects of positive thinking on cells and claims there is evidence that positive thinking does help.  I am too fatigued to do the research myself and remain skeptical but luckily my mood has been mostly positive anyway. I try to find humor in the situation if possible since otherwise I would be obsessing about discomfort and possibly even death.

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