Thursday, July 9, 2009

Kicked by Chemo and Loving It!!

Hi everybody!!

Here I am, the day after chemo. This morning I've had a schwack of pills and some oatmeal garnished with banana (potassium), raisins (iron), strawberries fresh from my garden and blackberries (antioxidants), and cinnamon (something good - I can't remember). I even had the stomach for it! YEAH!! I feel pretty good considering I didn't sleep very well during the night. From the time I went to bed at 11:00 to about 4:00 in the morning, it felt like a boa constrictor was wrapping itself around my forearms and upper legs, leaving them feeling repeatedly constricted, numbed and weakened. It didn't hurt. It was just a very strange sensation. Between that and having to get up to pee every hour to hour and a half really limits the ability to get a good night's sleep.

Even though I didn't sleep well at night, I slept and dozed quite a bit yesterday after my chemo treatment.

The chemo treatment. YUCK! I really hate the time spent there getting the treatment and here's why. First, it's so cold and uncomfortable. This time I came prepared. I dressed very warmly, I brought a small down-filled comforter and my big bear slippers. I used all of those and still had Kevin get me and extra blanket and I was still COLD!! I coudn't wait for it to be over.

And then ... and this is not good for me ... the nurse sat in front of me to give Kevin (and I --- really, not a good idea) a little training session on how to give me what will be 5 injections I have to have post-chemo (starting tomorrow) to help my white blood cells recover more quickly. Kevin first asked her about the size of the needle and she assured him it would be "tiny" like the one he uses for his insulin. Then, she reveals this big, honkin' needle and my eyes start to well up immediately!! It was BIG!! About as thick as a pencil lead ... and LONG!! About 3 inches!! Kevin commented that it looked A LOT BIGGER than an insulin needle. And then she explained that it's the needle used to draw up the drug but that another smaller needle is used to inject it. Still, by then I was a puddle and scared half to death. You have to understand, I'm NOT good with needles, in case you haven't figured that out yet. I do okay with traditional blood taking needles ... once I got over the fainting and learned to warm them about my tiny, rolly veins. I'm really very good. Injections. Not so good. Home Care is going to come tomorrow to give me my first injection and to make sure Kevin and his Mom know the procedure (which I'm sure Sylvia knows already) and then, I guess, Kevin or Sylvia will give them to me. YIKES! Mostly YIKES needles period. Someone please just put me out first!

The drug cocktail they give me during chemo (and no, Laurel, I don't drink this cocktail ... it's all done intravenously one at a time through my PICC-line, which was annoyingly uncomfortable this time after just having the dressing changed in the morning) make me very groggy so I slept a little during chemo treatment but it's not a restful sleep ... it's druggy and I'm not entirely out. Strange.

When I got home, though, at about 4:00, I curled up on the couch, warmed up quickly and fell deeply asleep almost immediately. So did Kevin. Chemo exhausts him, too. We both slept until supper while Mom did laundry and tip-toed around. Marina stopped by for a quick visit and brought me some beautiful flowers .... thanks, Marina! Mom made me poached eggs on toast for supper, which sat well on my stomach and aside for debilitating fatigue and some minor nausea, I felt okay for the evening until I went to bed. I was just very weak, a little dizzy, a little pale ... but okay. I feel better today.

Thanks for all your well wishes. Day 1 went as well as could be expected, I think (except for that needle incident). I feel good enough this morning to do a few things right now and hopefully it will be a good chemo day 2!


  1. Hi Heather! Glad to hear you're doing ok! Good also for you to have Kevin or his mom give you your injections! Hope this round is easier! Rest Up! Hi to all!

  2. Thanks, Devy and Anon (Is that you again, Sylvia?).


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