Excerpt: Silver Linings

Note: Silver Linings is now available for sale on Amazon (click the link to the right) or can be read in its entirety for free as a PDF. 90% of my royalties will be donated to the Young Survival Coalition.


Chemo etc. ‘How I’m doing’ update January 28, 2009

My counts didn’t end up indicating a transfusion. I was almost disappointed by this, because it wouldn’t be just my hemoglobin that would be helped by the transfusion, I’d also have all these grown up white cells and platelets and such that are running low with me. But all my counts were good enough for chemo, though all of them were below normal for a healthy person.

At infusion, I went with Dr. C’s recommendation and since the neuropathy hadn’t entirely dissipated, I asked for the reduced dose. The nurse said the order was for a 20% reduction, but I guess they round that to the packaged doses and whereas 20% would have taken me down to 96ML, the dose was 105ML… which isn’t much more than 10%. Oh well, bad news for my hands is also bad news for any last remaining cancer cells I guess. I’ll just have to hope for the best.

I met Dr. L yesterday, the cancer center’s psychiatrist. I really liked him. And I just remembered I gave him this link. Hi, Dr. L! =) Anyway, more on that when I have a bit more mental energy, but I’ll be meeting with him frequently and I think he’ll be able to help me with the anxiety and image issues that have come up. My appointments with him will be on Thursdays so as not to conflict with my appointments with Dr. W.

Speaking of which, yesterday afternoon was stab’n’drain time again, and it was back up to 280 ML. For no apparent reason. I tried to get an idea of when/how the drain would be placed, but somehow got side-tracked. I figure with the way my counts have been behaving that it will be at least four weeks before my counts are in normal range, and I feel pretty sure that Dr.W isn’t going to go ahead on just “okay for chemo” numbers. I did go ahead and schedule the next three appointments for stab’n’drain. I might as well know exactly when, since I know I have to go, anyway! Until the seroma thing is resolved, I’m still going to be a fairly busy person, as far as appointments go, I just won’t be spending quite as much time in the infusion center.

So the drama for this round …. well it’s too tiresome to repeat it all, but suffice to say that I ended up having to do the nuelasta shot without trained medical help. I did have untrained loving help from Olav, though! And very helpful help it was, I feel like I would have needed three hands… well I did need three hands and one of them was his. I’d seen the nurse administer it to me twice, but it took a bit of nerve to stab myself in the tummy like that. It didn’t hurt at all, though, just like when the nurse did it! Stung a bit, afterwards, though. I might have pushed the medication in faster than she does, though I tried to go slowly. Anyway, Olav and I survived the experience. 😉

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