« Home Now | Main | Chemo Sucks »

Chemo

First off, let me start by saying I'm feeling a bit wonky right now. Sleepy and slightly queasy. I don't know if it's residual from the Atavin (aka Lorazepam) I took last night, from the chemo or whatever. So I'm not feeling my writing "spark." You're just going to have to bare (or is that bear) with me.

We headed over to Dr. F's office about 1:20 after a mad scramble to get all our books, magazines, dvd players, dvds, water and snacks together. They must have thought we were moving in when we walked into the office with a pink cooler, and large tote bag but no one said anything.

Like always, I signed in, and we sat. Only today, for the first time, we noticed a fire burning in the fireplace - I call that seat! It wasn't a real wood burning fire, but heck it was a fire and it kept me warm (I tend to get cold when I'm nervous). It's the only picture I have, taken with my cell phone, because I forgot my camera.

chemofire.jpg

Within ten minutes or so, they called me into the lab for my blood test - this time though (and my understanding, going forward), it was just a pin prick in my finger (like testing blood sugar for diabetics; didn't even need a band-aid). Back out to the waiting room where I promptly kicked Chris out of the good chair, next to the fire, and waited some more.

During this time the waiting room, which had been just us and another woman, filled up. I have to comment here too on the age of people in the office, I definitely brought the average age down. When do all the young, hip people go to get chemo?

Finally, about 2:00, we're called into the chemo room. I get a lazy boy, reclining chair, while Chris gets a normal, cushioned straight back one next to me (at first, they didn't even have that for him but a nurse found a spare one, and brought it over for him). Mel, my nurse, came over, and introduced herself and started my IV (through the port, which works well - though I can't look at it b/c the thought of it makes my stomach flip). Anyway, first thing in, some saline solution, nothing else.

While that was going on, she went through the whole package of my chemo drugs, my possible side effects and what prescriptions she was calling in to my pharmacy for later. She also got me the prescription for my wig in the off-chance that Aetna might cough up some of the money. She told me though, that in the future, they're not going to go over this material during the first chemo session but instead have a meeting ahead of time between the patient and the nurse. I joked with Chris that the reason they don't go over the information with you ahead of time is because if you knew it, you wouldn't' go through with it. But really, I think having that sit-down with a nurse ahead of time would be beneficial.

Once we went through all of the side effects (I'll go through them in another entry), and I commented that the only one I wanted was the Anorexia (hey - might as well hit goal while I'm at this), we were on our own, so we dug out the DVD player and popped in the Sopranos - season 6 which we hadn't watched ... or thought we hadn't. Turns out season 6 was a "split-season" so we've seen some of it. Now I need to go figure out what was the last episode we saw.

Luckily though, we brought Blades of Glory with us. I have to say, if you're looking for some stupid, totally hysterical entertainment (as long as you're willing to buy into the stupidity factor), this is the movie for you - a good chemo movie. Hope everyone else in there didn't mind us laughing hysterically but hey, it was better than hanging out, not talking to each other with long pusses on our faces (like most of the other patients).

While we watched, the nurse came over a few times, one to inject the anti-nausea medication, which is supposed to last three days (yeah right), one to inject the actual fresh-mixed meds, which are reds by the way - and make you pee red (yeah, more psychedelic pee), and one to hang another clear bag that I can't remember what it was. We were also interrupted by Margaret from billing, just going over our coverage. Which reminds me, we need to call Aenta, because we thought they covered 80% of the negotiated billing rate but Aetna told Dr. F's office they cover 75% of the negotiated billing rate. Such fun.

Eventually though, and much quicker than we expected (by 4:15), we were done. We didn't even get to watch the end of the movie. I had to set up an appointment for today (I'm getting some shot to help my bones produce more white blood cells), and we stopped at the wig store and pharmacy and were home by about 5:00.

Last night was okay - felt pretty good until about 6 or 6:15, then started to regret eating dinner. By 8:00 I was begging for the Ativan, flannel pajamas and my bed. We watched the end of Blades of Glory and then put on A Christmas Story which I must have fallen asleep during pretty early. Slept through the night and right now, I'm just debating taking the compazine or trying to get through with out it.

There's more stuff I want to write about but I'm just kind of unfocused and tired.

Share |

Other Thinks (11)

Kim. I can hardly believe you're together enough a day after your first chemo to write such a detailed entry!!!
Ay, girl, you're amazing. But - don't be a hero. Take the drugs!!
p.s. Blades of Glory - perfect movie for such a day! Remember, Shannon and I both saw it on the plane to Paris last year, and we kept giggling about the goofiness? Now you know why. :)

Thanks for sharing the details. It sounds so scary especially not knowing how you will react. I hope the next couple of days are not too rough.

nancyhol:

Kim,

Thank you for keeping us all "in the loop" on your treatment progress.

Not pleasant, I know, but at least you know that you have made the first step on your road to recovery.

Lots of hugs to you and Chris.

karenb1:

Kim...
Am following your progress regularly ... and pray for you daily.

You truly are an inspiration !!

I look forward to celebrating your recovery w/ champagne on LBI next summer!

Karen

sandrac:

Wow -- that's a very full day, I'm so impressed that you still had the energy to write anything, let alone such a vivid entry.

It's great that you're able to bring to DVDs with you during chemo -- that would be a helpful distraction. And the sillier the better! I loved Blades of Glory (I could watch The Iron Lotus and the harpooning of the Bonhomme mascot over and over.)

Hope you can keep getting your rest, Kim!

One down! Take the drugs!! Hope you are doing ok. Sending aloha and hugs.

Terry (teaberry):

Yay, Kim. First one - OVER. One step closer to finishing.

I agree - take whatever you need to get your through this.

Dorit:

Wishing you no continued nausea and loved your comment re the anorexia. Boy can I relate!! As for wondering whether to take the drugs or not, remember DRUGS ARE GOOOOOD, you take them and feel better!!! Ya hear??? All the best!!

Take the Atavin and get into bed, flannel 'jammies and all! No need to do anything right now but take totally good care of you, so sleep when tired, ok?

Fingers crossed for a good next few days...let us know, if you feel like it, how you are doing. I check in lots to see where you are in the process and how it is going for you.
Huge hugs,
Brenda
xox

Jan:

Hello,

I am 3/5 through breast cancer treatment with dose dense A/C followed by weekly Taxol. The first week was the hardest of all of them. Hang in there. It helped my a lot when my oncologist prescribed fluids for me to get me through A/C. I don't think I would have made it without the extra help.

Prayers,

Jan Bros

Marcia:

You are such a trooper, but yes, take the drugs! Virtual hugs and martinis to you and Chris.

Post a Think

(If you haven't left a think here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your think will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 4, 2008 8:37 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Home Now.

The next post in this blog is Chemo Sucks.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

 Subscribe to This Blog

Recent Non-Travel Thinks

Powered by
Movable Type 3.33
© 2004 - 2014 Kim Riemann