Today is Round Two of Chemo.
I have heard from my new found cancer friends that round One of chemo is a breeze.
No side effects. Or at least very few.
It's round Two that will kick your butt from here to Singapore and back.
We have to go to the lab for CBC blood work before radiation and then on to chemo.
A long day ahead. I hope "Debbie" isn't there today but never will I ever sit for 2 hours before an appointment again without letting our presence known even tho we had previously checked in.
Lab work to see if you are strong enough to take the poison they are about to shoot into your veins like the last space shuttle mission.
30 minutes here and then over to the radiation clinic. My husband says he changed the name once again. It's no longer Faith, Hope and Love....
Nor is it Doom, Death and Destruction but today he calls it
Pain, Suffering and Heartache.
That one sentence made me cry silent tears as I drove him.
Buck up honey... This day is shaping up to be a hard one. As I write this in my iPad I wonder what the new downside of the day will be.
I used to love surprises. Not any more.
I see my new best friend, Chris.
He looks awful! Pale and weak.
I haven't seen him since last Friday so I gently take his hand and ask if he's doing ok. Dumb question, right?
( I've learned it's not the question that matters but the caring).
Chris's cancer is in his colon but more so his rectum. I can't imagine the position they must put him in to blast him but he told me to use my imagination..... Oh My Ouch!
He has taken the last 3 days off to heal up to brace for his last few days.
He told me the radiation to that delicate area has chewed him up and not in a good way. The radiation has also given him diarrhea. He said it hurts so bad that he cries when he uses the restroom. That part is bad but when he wipes, even gently, parts of his skin comes off in his hand. I just want to rock him and comfort him. Make it end.
But this is curing him, right? His sessions are going to end next week and his cancer is a stage I or II
which is so good for him. Again, I pray he will be ok. Chris is a young man who has a heart of gold and is a treasure. I see the pain in his face and it hurts me.
WHY do I always feel the pain of others? I don't want it.
The pain in my heart is all I can take right now but I absolutely love Chris and wish him well.
Sandy is AWOL. I can't even THINK why she hasn't been in here for days.....
I'll think about that tomorrow....
Tomorrow is Friday and I am going to make that my mantra for today.
Repeat. Tomorrow is Friday. Friday is one day before Saturday and the weekend. Weekends are a reprieve from Radiation, needles, masks, chemo, Cisplatin, and doctors. Two whole days off.
But first. First we have this day ahead of us.
Shake it off, put your head down and get thru it.
It's one more week down.....
PS. I'm just going to add this here but it has no relation to anything.
I just need to write it down :(
I am worried.
The doctors all tell us this can be treated. Treated. No one ever says CURED. I know I am not being positive right now but I'm scared. Really scared. Petrified.
One of the RN's here at the Radiation clinic asked me if I needed anything a week ago and I looked her dead in the eye and said I would like to talk to her. I am a realist. I am a survivor but I need answers. I KNOW she knows the questions I want to ask but she has been avoiding me like the plague lately.
Perhaps I don't want/need answers at all.
Let's just leave that right there. Ok.
I'll think about THAT tomorrow too....
Time to go across campus to the chemo clinic....
I have magazines (OneCentStamp sent me a subscription to Harper's Bazaar) books, my ipad, my macbook, headphones, a book that KarenKupcake sent to me and I even packed a lunch.
This time I KNOW what to expect and what needs to be done. I have my numbing cream and put it on the port spot an hour ago. No more pain from needles the size of whale hooks so he won't feel the pain of that.
This time I got the prescription filled for the anti-puke patch and the IV Emends is ordered by the oncologist.
This time, I am not going to allow anyone to drop the ball on my husband. His pain is MY pain and I REFUSE for him to be hurt anymore than is absolutely necessary.
I'm telling you, seeing someone you love hurt this way is like a physical pain. Maybe worse. When I see my skinny, sweet, sick husband wince in pain I want to do damage to someone.
The blood was drawn and will have been tested by the time we get there to see if he is healthy enough for chemo.
We arrive on time and whoop-dee-do we only have to wait 35 minutes to get in and we choose a lovely puke-green luxury recliner for the day. We see the same couple from NY that we met here last week. Her husband has the same cancer as Henry but when I ask what Stage it is, they don't know so call over an RN who charts it and declares to them that he is a Stage I or II
No lymph nodes involved and nothing has spread.
My husband is Stage IV High Grade 4 with lymph nodes involved. All the lymph nodes in his neck.
*sigh* I'll think about that tomorrow too.
They apply the anti-nausea patch and hook up the IV to the port. In goes the anti-nausea drip and the steroids then the
saline flush and then Cisplatin. It's one minute per ounce for the chemo. He's at 90 ounces so 90 minutes to administer that then one more saline flush and we will be out the door.
Total time. 6 hours.
We play games, whisper to each other while holding hands and play "Unchained Melody" on my iPad which was our wedding song. It brings us both to tears but no one notices. A nurse walks by and tells us how cute we are together. We both cry silent tears as we smile inside our hearts. We have always been told that and it makes me happy.
Maybe thru all of this we still have it together?
Yes. We do.
Time to feed Franklin. He hasn't "eaten" all day. His color is once again a dull dark gray. The color of coddled cottage cheese on a hot hot day.
Henry just told me he feels like hurling. I bring a lined new trash can to sit by the bedside.
This may be a really rough evening.
Barf bags thankfully don't bother me. Blood does.
I am used to being puked on so this one I can handle.
He has a triple threat going on so hopefully, for his sake, he won't feel ill.
He has the IV Emends in his system.
He has the new puke patch on his arm.
He has anti-nausea pills to be crushed and put in the tube.
Cross your fingers... This may be a bumpy ride.
I want to write this to all of you:
Thank You again. All of your your notes, the amazing candle site started by FloridaPossum, your beautiful comments, letters of hope and love and especially just for being here.
Most all of you, I have not met but each one of you are now my family. I have never felt so much love and support from anyone as I do from each and every one of you.
I feel you everyday.
I feel you pushing us.
I feel you with us.
I feel your kindness and open hearts.
I feel your well wishes and so does Henry.
I know you are here. I know you care and what more is there? Nothing.
They say you can measure the worth of a person by their friends and how they are loved. I am so rich right now. Not with money or treasures of riches but rich with treasures of FRIENDS and that is WEALTH. I am Blessed and YOU are all my Blessing.
You have a large piece of my heart.
Now I need to go dry my eyes, blow my nose and put on some pink lipstick.
Tomorrow is Friday!