Friday, October 23, 2009

Guess What? I GOT A TATTOO!!

Oh, yes I did. Two of them! But sorry ... no photo. They're discrete tattoos!

I had a CT Scan this afternoon and got "marked up" for radiation. They have to give me two little freckle-sized tattoos so that they'll be able to line me up for radiation in precisely the same position each time.

On Tuesday, November 3, I get my mole removed and after the stitches are out (approximately 1 week later), I'll start radiation. Every day for 5 or 6 weeks. I was initially told 7 weeks. I was later told 6 and, last I heard, it might even be 5. If I wait a little longer, maybe I'll only need 1! No matter what, I WILL be done by Christmas. Woohoo!!

Mostly I feel tired and dragged out today. I've decided not to go to Regina this weekend. Best, under the circumstances, to stay home and focus on feeling better for Tuesday's departure for Vancouver.

My heart rate is still higher than it should be. As instructed, I phoned the Champion Centre to let them know that it's still high but my oncologist wasn't there today and neither was my oncological nurse. So, I spoke with another nurse and her feeling is that "it's not their problem", though that isn't what she said, of course. She suggested I should call my family doctor but, if that's what was intended, why would I have been told to call them if my heart rate doesn't come down to normal? It was this nurses feeling that it couldn't have anything to do with the chemo but heart issues are one of the main side effects of chemo and, in fact, they make sure you have a MUGA heart test prior to chemo to make sure your heart can stand up to treatment. As it stands, I'm to monitor my heart rate over the weekend and wait to hear from my oncologist on Monday unless things get worse and then I should go to Emergency. Both my oncologist and naturopath agree that the edema isn't likely to have caused the elevated heart rate and my naturopath believes it's directly related to the chemo. Wait and see, I guess.

Having an elevated heart rate, anemia, and edema probably all explain why I'm feeling generally crappy. I feel so tired and drained. I can't walk very far without feeling winded and my legs feel very heavy. I generally feel kind of lightheaded (and have felt this way for a couple of weeks) and "on the verge" of dizziness. When I move my eyes to look at something it's as if my vision takes a few moments to catch up with my eyes. It's not just focus, it's a strange visual delay.

So, tonight I'll kick back and take it easy. Watch tv and get some sleep.

On the positive front ... and quite literally "on the front" ... my chest is normal skin coloured for the first time in 5 months!! Even when my face and neck haven't been red, my chest always is and suddenly it's not! Up until today, it's looked like I've had a nasty sun burn on my chest! It's a little sign of leaving chemo in the dust. Even little signs are uplifting.


  1. It sounds as if phoning the Champion Centre about your elevated heart rate further elevated your heart rate!

    We saw you note in the Kyle Times today.

  2. That just might have been the case, Cheryl! As wonderful as the people are at the Champion Centre, I do sometimes wonder about some of my encounters there ... this one and the meeting with the nutritionist.

    Still, though, I must say that I marvel at the individuals I've met there and the superior level of care they provide. I sometimes wonder if the people working there aren't hand picked for their compassion, sense of humour, and attitude.

    I really have been very touched by the people of my childhood home. I sympathize with people who didn't grow up in a small community. A small community sticks with you for LIFE!! How comforting is that. It's always home.


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