It’s been more than a week since I last posted. I’ve been getting ready for my trip out to visit my family in California, and the day has arrived! I will be gone today through the 20th of May.
For over a week now I have resumed most of my daily activities of running a house to include the grocery shopping, cooking, laundry and upkeep, even though I am still anemic. They checked my blood levels last week and my white cell counts are normal, so not as susceptible to infection, but the red cell count is still low, causing anemia. I was also catching up on all the back-ordered jewelry orders that had stacked up and then I put my shop on vacation mode – I plan to resume after June 1st. That has taken a lot of pressure off of me and freed up some time.
I began my “maintenence” Herceptin dose infusions last week, three times the levels I had been receiving, since they are every 3 weeks now instead of every week. Tomorrow is the first Wednesday since New Years that I have not had to be at the hospital! That, in itself, feels amazing! The only side effect I have noticed is one my doctor warned me of, and that is a constant drippy nose accompanied by scabs lining the nostrils. Hopefully those will subside with time as my body adjusts and I get back some nose hairs. I don’t go anywhere without my Kleenex!
My oncologist denied my request for a manicure, since one of the nails started lifting from the finger and was oozing. The bleeding under the nails has continued, but I went ahead and painted over them for my trip since they look pretty ugly. I just can’t have the soaking and cuticle treatment that a typical manicure includes. I am keeping them short so they don’t get caught and then pull right off – they are tender and still a little numb.
I shaved my legs for the first time in 6 months too! California is HOT already and shorts and skirts mean no covering up the stubble that is beginning to return. 🙂 Hair is starting to fill in the bald spots on my head, though just grayish colored (ugh) chickadee “fuzz” right now. I am still sporting a wig when I leave the house, and a scarf or bandanna while staying at home. I don’t think there will be much swimming pool or beach activity for me this summer!
I signed on to be a “chemo-angel” to a cancer patient just beginning her chemo treatments….a source of encouragement to someone else and a real place to help me begin recovery as I reach out to another woman affected by breast cancer. Channeling my time and energies into helping others will help me from holding my own pity party now that I am going through the post chemo “fall out”. Nobody warned me of the feelings I would have as I begin to process the emotional after effects of treatment. And in some respects I feel like I am still IN treatment until the new year, as I go once or twice a month to the chemo room for infusions. A ‘new normal’, they call it. All I can say is I just want my ‘old’ normal back, and that is a loss I must grieve over time. I appreciate your prayers to that end.
‘Til next week!