Friday, May 29, 2009

Round 4

Hey everyone!
I was able to get my 4th round of chemo today. My WBC count was way up, as expected. Like I've said before, I am extremely sensitive to the Neupogen shots. I did one on Wed., and gave myself one yesterday (not my favorite thing to do!), but they were a lower dose than the last one I had. Rich and I talked Tues. night when I had the fever(got to 101.2) and we figured my counts were low. I told him I hate those shots, but I'd rather have them and get chemo than delay chemo anymore. Besides, I know better how to handle the pain now. The doc agreed completely and was happy I felt that way, because he wants me to stay on schedule as much as possible too. So I was excited to be able to proceed today!
The pain from the shot was manageable. Kept me awake a little, because every big movement, like rolling over sends shock waves up my spine. They take my breath away, make me groan a little, but then its over. Unfortunately it happens everytime I move, and even laugh! Its better tonight. Probably from the steroid they give me during chemo. That steroid is a miracle drug!

I have to try to explain the cold problems I had today. Its getting REALLY bad. Everytime I'm nearing the end of chemo I start to lose my voice and my lips tingle. I figured out last time that this was because its cold in the hospital. Well today the same thing happened, but as I was leaving it was getting worse and I was starting to feel like I couldn't breathe (they tell you it might feel like that, but you CAN breathe). My throat was freezing up so I couldn't swallow, which made me think I was going to throw up, because I had spit sitting in the back of my throat I couldn't get rid of. Then my throat started making making weird noises. Instead of walking down the long hallway to the elevators to the parking ramp, Rich and I saw the front entrance and headed for that because it was warm and sunny out. As soon as I got in the sun I started feeling much better. Rich went to get the van and picked me up. I had a warm cup of tea when I got home! (Altho the ceramic mug was too cold to touch until I warmed it in the microwave!). When I resume chemo, after radiation is done, I will have to take extra precautions, like bring a scarf, or wear a surgical mask, and I can have hot tea made for me at the hosp. to keep my throat warm. Luckily, the cold sensitivity fades a little each day, altho overall it lasts longer now. Sorry to go on and on, but its just so hard to describe! And I want anyone else who has to go thru it to be prepared!

I feel a little worse today than I usually do on my first day. I did already take an extra anti-nausea pill, and couldn't eat much for supper. Tried some leftover hotdish, but ended up with Ritz crackers and very warm oj. I'll be awake alot tonight because of the steroid, but then I'll get to watch the last Jay Leno show. Haven't stayed up late enough to watch that in years, and lately I've seen it quite a few times! I'll take some sleeping pills too, but they don't work that great, at least not on my first night of chemo.

Ok, I know it always sounds like I'm complaining (or whining!), but really I'm just trying to be honest. This week may get a little rough before it gets better. But I know I'll survive and be just fine! I'm REALLY looking forward to having a little break from this before radiation starts. It makes me happy to think about it.

On to other news: Shonna sang a Katie Perry(Thinking of You) song for her pop solo at the choir concert last night and she rocked!! Alot of her senior choir friends showed up just to cheer her on (they cheered before she even sang!), as did many other friends too. Shonna has a video of it I might try to put on here, if she's ever home long enough to send it to me. Its on her facebook now, and I have to figure out how to get it on mine too. She hopes to be in the Bethel University choir next year, instead of the high school choir. They treat PSEO students just like college freshman, so she should be able to join.

One more side note: the cancer center's cupboards are nearly bare, and they could really use treat donations. I plan on getting some from Sam's Club this weekend. Things like crackers, fruit snacks, nuts, trail mix, granola or nutrigrain bars, lo-cal choc. treats, and not-so-lo-cal treats too! Things to get someone thru a couple hours of sitting. Single serving packages. Any cash donations, no matter how large or small, Rich and I will use to purchase snacks from Sam's Club. The nurses REALLY appreciate the donations I have gotten so far.Thank you!! SJM people(Hi!)--Rich is going to put a list of needed items on your b-board, in case anyone is interested.

Well, I'm starting to fade...gonna end here. Thanks for checking! I'll let you know how its going tomorrow or Sun.
Love to all!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Shot Instead of Chemo

Just as I suspected, my "neutrophils" are low (type of white blood cell), and I had to get a shot of Neupogen instead of chemo today. That's the shot that caused me so much pain last time. This time I took ibuprofen and Tylenol BEFORE I got the shot, and so far I'm doing ok. The shot was a lower dose, and I'll do another one tomorrow. I'll have to give it to myself here at home. Then Friday I'll go back and get my levels checked and, if everything is ok, I'll get my 4th round of chemo then.
I still have a fever lingering, but its under control with the meds. My allergies are bothering me too, but mostly I just feel tired. Took a nap when we got home today. We were at the clinic for 3 hours or so, because there was some problems with insurance and letting me have a shot at home. Our insurance is very good overall, but when it comes to "specialty" drugs (meaning expensive!) they are very particular how they handle things. But the way things turn out, I think they end up wasting more money than they save! They are going to Fedex the shot to my house instead of letting me pick it up at the pharmacy--how is that saving money?
After I get round 4 of chemo, I found out today that I have to wait 3-4 weeks before starting radiation. The Oxaliplatin drug needs to be out of my system first. I have an appt. with the radiation therapist on June 17th. Radiation will start sometime after that appt. The good news is that will give me a bit of a break from side effects, the bad news is that pushes my whole treatment out a little farther. That's not really "bad", just another adjustment--one of many it seems! The soonest I could be done with everything is probably around mid- Nov. Just in time for my grandbaby to be born!
I also found out --or just realized--that while I will be getting the 5FU drug during radiation, its the Oxaliplatin that causes the cold sensitivity and hair thinning--so I'll be getting a break from both those side effects--yay! Hopefully the radiation side effects won't be too bad.
I'm going to close with some lines from one of my favorite songs I heard on the radio today:
I will walk by faith
Even when I cannot see
because this broken road
Prepares Your will for me
(Walk by Faith, by Jeremy Camp)
Love and Blessings!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Feeling Down

I had a great day yesterday. I was awake early (my body is getting used to not getting alot of sleep), the sun was shining, the birds were singing, and I decided I may as well get up. I had my shower, hair and make-up done, dressed, breakfast, all by 8:15 am!! We enjoyed the morning, then went to Fleet Farm to buy mulch and perennials. It was almost 11 when we left there and I was ready for "2nd breakfast", so we went to Perkins. In the afternoon Alyssa and I went shopping while Rich worked on the yard. I got a smoothie at Mrs. Field's--yum!! By 8 pm, I was pretty tired, so I went back to bed to read, but then Shonna flopped on my bed and we had to finish filling out the college PSEO papers. Seems everytime I try to relax in my bed I end up with 1 or more of the kids sprawled out with me!!(I LOVE it--it usually involves laughter!) I fell right to sleep when the lights finally went out, but of course I woke up 2 hours later and couldn't get back to sleep, so I took an Ambien.
Things went downhill from there. I did sleep, but not very well, and woke up feeling tired and groggy. Stayed in bed til 7:30 am, then tried getting ready for work and just got fed up. My stomach didn't feel well, I wasn't in the least bit interested in breakfast (just very thirsty), and I knew I couldn't make it thru the work day. I called Rich and told him I wanted to be done with work (only a few days left of the school year anyway), then called school and told them. I was in tears, which is what happens when I get tired and frustrated. Today was supposed to be my best day (chemo is tomorrow), and I'm tired of thinking I should be able to do certain things when I can't. Now I don't have to get up and try to make it to work, I can just take each day as it comes, which is a relief. I'm glad I worked as much as I did, but now I need to focus on myself and not worry about who I'm letting down. (but I'll sure miss everyone!!)
As I was sitting here feeling so blue, it occurred to me that I should take my temp. This is the time when my white blood cells should be at their lowest (2 weeks after chemo). Sure enough, I have a fever. Its not very high (99.6), but my "normal" is under 98. So, I'll keep an eye on it, and if it goes over 100 I'll have to call the doc. I'm thinking this means my wbc is low, hopefully I won't have to postpone chemo again! But now I know why I feel lousy.
Wow...tired all of a sudden. I'll end here and update after chemo tomorrow. Keep me in your prayers!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Weekend

Happy Memorial Day (tomorrow!)!!!!
Please take time to remember our fallen soldiers and remember that FREEDOM ISN'T FREE!!!! So many lives have been lost so we can live free in this GREAT country! And pray for those who continue to serve, like my almost-son-in-law, Jaren.
Here are a few pics from our little barbecue today. They didn't turn out quite the way I wanted, but that's impossible with these kiddos! The weather is perfect!! Low 70's, and lots of birds singing!
Shonna, me, Rachel, Alyssa

Rachel and Alyssa

Ken (son-in-law), Shonna, Rich(master griller), Rachel, Alyssa

My stomach is still giving me a lot of trouble (couldn't enjoy much of the yummy food today!), but at least I'm getting my energy back and not stuck in bed-just stuck at home :).
Have a good one!
God Bless!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Tummy Bug!

Well, just when everything is going great, something else has to happen, right? Thurs. eve. I started to have an upset stomach, which got worse as the evening went on. Most of the night was spent in the bathroom, and its a wonder anyone could sleep with the toilet being flushed 500 times overnight!
During the day yesterday I was better, but had a lot of nausea and slept most of the day. Finally around bedtime I was feeling a little hungry (instead of just nauseous) so I had a few crackers.
Today I've managed to shower, eat a little breakfast and stay awake, so far. I'm pretty weak, but think I'm over being sick--just need to recover.
What a bummer! There's so much I want to do. Alyssa and Rich have been taking care of everything, and Rachel didn't have my help for her garage sale yesterday.
Oh well, it happens. I don't thing it was "swine flu" or anything like that because I never had a fever. Just some sort of bug that if my immune system was stronger I probably wouldn't have even noticed!
I hope everyone enjoys their weekend! I had hoped to do some shopping, planting, and grilling, but we'll see how it goes!!
Take care!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Funny One-Liners

I have to post some of these one-liners. They are very funny--but so many of them are true too!!
1st a little update: yesterday I still had a lot of nausea, but made it thru work ok; rested for a few minutes, and helped Rachel set up her garage sale. It was really hot (90's for Pete's sake!!), so mom and I didn't stay too long. I turned on the a/c last night because I cannot sleep when its hot! Today is very hot also! I didn't sleep well last night anyway, but most of the nausea was gone, so that makes me feel MUCH better. I'm pretty tired now, but after a few minutes of rest (the phone never seems to stop ringing!), I'm going to try to stay awake until bedtime. Maybe I'll sleep better. And yes, my hair is thinning--slowly, I hope!! A wonderful co-worker provided supper tonight, so I didn't have to cook--THANK YOU!
Ok, on to the "jokes":
Don't let your worries get the best of you; Remember, Moses started out as a basket case.
Some people are kind, polite, and sweet-spirited; Until you try to sit in their pews.
Many folks want to serve God, But only as advisers.
It is easier to preach ten sermons Than it is to live one.
The good Lord didn't create anything without a purpose, But mosquitoes come close.
When you get to your wit's end, You'll find God lives there.
Quit griping about your church; If it was perfect, you couldn't belong.
If a church wants a better pastor, It only needs to pray for the one it has. God Himself doesn't propose to judge a man until he is dead. So why should you?
A lot of church members singing 'Standing on the Promises' Are just sitting on the premises.
Be ye fishers of men. You catch 'em - He'll clean 'em.
Stop, Drop, and Roll won't work in Hell. (One of my favorites!)
Coincidence is when God chooses to remain anonymous.
Don't put a question mark where God put a period.
God doesn't call the qualified, He qualifies the called.
God grades on the cross, not the curve.
God promises a safe landing, not a calm passage.
If God is your Co-pilot, swap seats!
Prayer: Don't give God instructions, just report for duty!
The task ahead of us is never as great as the Power behind us.
The Will of God never takes you to where the Grace of God will not protect you. (AMEN!!)
The best mathematical equation I have ever seen: 1 cross + 3 nails = 4 given. (AMEN AGAIN!!!)
Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about learning to dance in the rain.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Is My Hair Thinning??

Every day when I comb out my wet hair, I swear there is more and more hair on the comb. I don't know if I'm just being paranoid or not. Is this how hair thinning starts? Or is it more noticeable?

I'm determined to make it to work today. I think I'll be fine once I get there (esp. after I'm done reading with that first group of boys!). I bet it will feel good to be out of the house. I've hardly been out since Thursday. I'm tired tho, and I've already taken 3 different anti-nausea pills. I'm saving the Ativan for later--it makes me too tired to work.

I also hope to make it to Rachel's to help set up her garage sale. Alyssa and grandma will be helping her too, I think. Rachel's been having some cramping, which we think is normal, but we want her to rest alot and take it easy. Her doc told her to drink lots of water too. Continue to pray for her and the baby.

My face and hands are getting dark again--something about pigmentation. My hands looks old, freckled and puffy, and all my freckles/age spots on my face are looking darker too. My eyes are getting puffy also. I'm wearing more sunscreen, cuz I know the sun will only make it worse. Besides, one of my chemo drugs is supposed to make me extra sensitive to the sun. I, along with many 40-something women, wish I had been wearing sunscreen for years. I'm so white that I like to try to get a little color, but I should really have been getting that color from a bottle (if at all!). I keep telling my lily-white girls that they should be proud of their Scandinavian heritage and embrace their whiteness!! But somehow they aren't buying that! Alyssa was happy the other day when she got a little pink--sigh, what's a mom to do? I'll have to buy some good quality spray on tan! Another reason not to be in the sun? Skin cancer! My mom has had several spots attention girls!

Ok, I've been rambling...probably cuz I'm tired! I would do just about anything for a ice cold glass of water right now! I am at that stage where I can have cool drinks, but not too cold yet.

Good news! Shonna got accepted to Bethel University next year as a PSEO student! Means she'll be a college freshman for her senior year of high school--yay! Its tough to get in--way to go Shonna!

I'm gonna go read a Psalm or 2 (always helps me feel stronger!), then get to work!!

Love to all!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Round 3 Blahs

Today is a little better. Yesterday was the worst day of this cycle, I think. Very tired, layed in bed alot looking out the windows and listening to the birds. Lots of nausea (but thankfully no vomiting yet!). Its hard to explain the tiredness. At times its just impossible to move your body. Every movement wears you out. Rich did some dishes, and it was so hard not to go show him how to do things "correctly". I just layed in bed and was thankful they were getting done at all! Thank you honey for helping out! He's been helping his dad out too with yard work. Another burden he does not need, but I'm proud of him for doing it. I wish the 2 of us could just escape somewhere until this is all over. No job pressures, no family pressures, just us. Of course I wouldn't be happy if the kids were too far away!
Its a gorgeous day today! Supposed to hit 80! I love the springtime colors and birds. They soothe me. I'm going to go lay down for awhile (1 of my anti-nausea drugs makes me sleepy!), then hopefully sit outside for a bit.
Rachel is having a garage sale on Thurs., Fri., and Sat. She's in the Willow Creek area of Shoreview--stop by to say hi. I'll be there after 2:30 Thurs., and Fri. We'll have a trumpet, aquarium, lawn mower, and lots of clothes and household!
A friend from work will be delivering supper tonight--perfect day for it! We still have gift cards, and frozen items for other dinners. I should feel like cooking in a day or 2 (maybe :-). Thanks to everyone for helping us out. We REALLY appreciate it.
Love you all!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Round 3 Update

Just a little update to let you all know how its going.
The "blahs" have kicked in. Had a hard time getting out of bed, and have been moving slow ever since! A bit more nausea today, have taken several different pills, and its better now (altho never completely gone!). Rich and I went out for lunch--unfortunately nothing tasted very good, but it was nice to be out of the house! Took a nap when we got back (with a little help from the Ativan pill!), and then watched an old Elvis movie. Rich has been putzing around the yard all day. Usually I'd keep him company, but I just don't have the energy, and its very chilly(only 53 now!) and super windy--so I'd have to wear the scarf and mittens! Hopefully this will be the last time its will be this chilly!? Tomorrow should be mid 60's and then 70's after that--yay!

I'm anticipating tomorrow to be worse, and maybe even Monday worse yet, because that's how it was last time. But I do know that each time can be different, so maybe it won't be so bad. I'll be praying about it too. God always gives me His peace when I take the time to talk with Him. Here is a passage from a friend's calendar that she sent me in an e-mail:

Trusting God completely means
having faith that He knows what is best for your life.
You expect Him to keep His promises, help you with problems,
and do THE IMPOSSIBLE when necessary.

The Lord your God is the faithful God
who for a thousand generations keep His promises.
Deuteronomy 7:9 tlb

I do trust God completely! And am so thankful for His love and mercy. It amazes me everyday!

I have been praying for some others I have found thru blogs that have colon cancer also. Some really have it rough. Their faith and strength are an inspiration to me to continue to be strong and fight. I'm young to have colon cancer (44), but one young gal is only only 19, and a few others are in their 20's and 30's and have young children. I pray for them often! So many stories start with a doc telling them they are too young for a colonoscopy, and then they waste time searching for other problems, and sometimes even being treated for other things, like colitis. By the time the doc (or a different, wiser doc) does the test, the cancer has spread! So, I BEG you--if you have bowel problems (any bleeding at all, or changes in bowel habits) DON'T WAIT! Insist on getting a colonoscopy. Its an easy procedure-- not bad at all!

Take care everyone!
Love and blessings to you!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Chemo Round 3 Has Finally Begun!

My white blood cell counts were way up --higher than the ranges! The doc was right and I am very sensitive to the Neupogen shot. I'm glad I only needed one, but if I need more in the future, I'll be better prepared for the pain. The doc said I probably won't need another shot until after radiation when I'll have 8 more rounds of chemo.
I was telling the nurse how sensitive I am to cold after chemo, and she said it sounds like I'm extra sensitve to the Oxaliplatin chemo drug also. Great... I can only hope that means its working extra hard to kill the cancer cells! But that is also the drug that causes hair thinning--lets hope that side effect skips me! By the time I'm done getting chemo, my hands are already extremely cold sensitive. Even the handles on my kitchen cupboards are too cold! My fingers are tingling now, and I don't even know why!! And the bare floors are way too cold for my feet! It takes some getting used to! After my 2nd round the sensitivity didn't go away completely, even tho it was 3 weeks between treatments. Also, my muscles cramp easily, my cheeks and nose get SUPER red, food doesn't taste good, and I'm very tired. No nausea yet :-) . I know it sounds like I'm complaining--but I'm really not. Its not so bad, and I'm glad to be back fighting the cancer!
Next chemo will be in 2 weeks, on the 27th. I think alot of people were scheduled to bring me food next week, but I know Dee called/e-mailed some to change it. Its too bad everyone's schedule had to be messed up.
Alyssa took me to my chemo today. Rich had an important meeting at work (that he scheduled for today because I wasn't supposed to have chemo!), and while we were both sad he couldn't be with me, it was nice to have Alyssa with me. She has been a BIG help during all of this. And I think its good for the girls to come with me and see the cancer center, meet my oncologist, and just generally see what Mom goes through.
I'll update more in a few days, and let you know how I'm doing!
Thanks so much for the thoughts, prayers, food, everything!!
Love and Blessings!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Happy Belated Mother's Day!

Yesterday was Mother's day, and it was a very nice day for me! Hope it was for all the other moms out there too. The good side of not having chemo last Wed. is that I wasn't sick and I didn't have to wear a scarf and mittens! It was chilly, as usual, for our annual picnic. Today was nearly 70 and sunny, while yesterday was only 54, and that came later in the afternoon when the sun finally came out! Other than the cold, it was a perfect day! Started with flowers and cinnamon rolls from Rich, then church, a picnic, a nap, watched a movie with Lyss and Rich, then a little reading time before bed--Perfect!
I'm still a little...hmmm...not sure what...disappointed(?) that I didn't have chemo, and I'm not sure why. I didn't expect to have problems with my immune system this soon (I've only had 2 chemo treatments), and that worries me. Does that mean I'll have more problems, and more setbacks? Having a weakened immune system is a scary thing. The doc didn't tell me to take any precautions, but now I wonder if I should have(beyond obsessively washing my hands and using hand sanitizer). Apparently my counts were pretty low. Also, I keep saying how I really have to let go of the guilt I have about messing up everyone's schedule, but I'm not sure I have let it go...something to pray about tonight, I think! I do feel, now, that God is in control, and that comforts me.
So, while I feel good, and I'm grateful for that, I still feel a little off. Not quite as cheerful as I usually am the last few days before chemo. Can't explain it tho.
On to happier news! Rachel heard the baby's heartbeat last week, and tomorrow she has another ultrasound. I'm so excited to be a grandma!
Alyssa hears from Jaren almost everyday, and he might get his 2 week leave in June. He is doing well in Iraq, altho its usually 110-115 degrees each day! She has finals this week, and then this semester of college is done! Alyssa has been such a blessing to me--she takes good care of me, and helps around the house.
Shonna is relieved to be done with her AP tests. Last week was stressful for her. If she does well (which I'm sure she will!) she'll get college credit for 2 classes. Her job at the library is going well, and she often picks up others' shifts--she likes the money! She has also had a few paid photography jobs, and has more lined up.
This coming Wed., I'll go to the cancer center again and hopefully be ok to get chemo! Alyssa will be taking me this time because Rich has someone flying in from AZ for a meeting. He didn't think he'd need this Wed. off--it was supposed to be in between treatments. He feels bad, but I reassured him that I'll be fine. It is sort of sad--its the first time he won't be with me. I'm so spoiled! I am happy to have Alyssa take me, though, because I kind of wanted the girls to have a chance to go with me at least once.
I want to say a big THANK YOU to DeeDee for sending another box of snacks over for the cancer center! The nurses are so grateful! And thank you to everyone who has been sending meals and gift cards GOD BLESS YOU ALL!!
Love and blessings to all!
A Bible verse I came across today during my study: Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Good News, Not So Good News

Well, my white blood cells and other related numbers went up, but not high enough to get chemo tomorrow. We are going to try for next Wed. The doc thinks they'll go up enough without another shot, thank goodness! I think because it hurt so bad yesterday, he decided not to do another one today. And by delaying chemo a week, my blood cells should build up on their own. It's technically not white blood cells that the doc is so concerned with, its "neutrophils" in my bone marrow, and when they are low it's called neutropenia (this concludes your medical lesson for the day!).
The difficult part of all this is it throws off my whole schedule! I had really hoped this wouldn't happen this soon. I've got subs all planned at work, people are scheduled to bring meals according to my chemo schedule, and now it's going to be the opposite weeks! I feel so bad about work. I'll be missing even more days now. I keep telling myself its not my fault, and there is nothing I can do about it, but I can't help but feel bad. I am so blessed to work where I do!
As for the food...considering I really don't feel like cooking AT ALL these days, it doesn't matter when it comes--we'll take it! And maybe some meals I can freeze.
You guys have no idea how much I appreciate everything everyone is doing for me. God Bless you all!! I always pray for extra blessings for those that are taking their time to cook, pray, send cards, give me Milk Duds ;), think good thoughts, whatever! So be prepared for God's blessings!
My back still hurts off and on. Major movements, like stairs, standing up, or sitting down send temporary electric shocks up my back, and I'm still taking Tylenol and ibuprofen. The nurse said my fever yesterday could have been caused by the shot too. I wish they would have told me that before I worried that I was getting some horrible infection my body couldn't fight off! I'm tired and often have a headache, but that could be all the stress too. But, hey, these are all minor, and I'm not complaining, just updating how I'm doing. It'll be nice to have extra days without nausea!
It's almost time to eat a yummy meal provided by a co-worker! I'm very thankful to have it today!
Love and Blessings!!!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

No Chemo Today :(

Well, we got to the hospital early so I could scope out the deli, buy something for lunch, and put it in the fridge in the cancer center. Turns out I didn't need it! My white blood cell count was too low for chemo--which was a total surprise! I didn't think it would happen this soon, and I figured I'd feel it somehow, and I've been feeling great. So the doc tells me I need to have a shot the next 3 days to bring my wbc count back up. I thought uh-oh, is this the shot I've heard about that makes the bones ache and causes a lot of pain?? The doc said it was a milder form of that shot, and its generally well tolerated, and I should have NO PROBLEM. I should note here he says that about everything! I had to give myself the shot, because I was supposed to take one home to do tomorrow, but insurance didn't like that (its a $1200 shot!). I'll have to go back tomorrow and they'll do blood counts again and I might not even need the 2nd or 3rd shot. They can't do chemo tomorrow tho, because they are too full, so if my #'s are ok I'll have chemo on Friday.
Anyways, when we finally left the hospital, we went out to eat lunch (at MaMa's in St. Paul), and then went home as we were both very tired (Rich hasn't been feeling well due to allergies, I think). As soon as I got home and sat down my back started hurting, like I was sitting on a nerve and it was sending little shock waves up my back. We went to lay down and soon I couldn't move AT ALL. If I did, even to move my arm or talk, waves of pain shot up my back. Finally I told Rich to get me some Tylenol and I took 3. He called the doc to see what else we could do and they told me to take 3 Ibuprofen also, and repeat every 6 hours. After about 45 minutes the pain started to subside. I didn't think it would! I was doing my childbirth breathing and saying to myself "its only pain", and sometimes even crying! It was really bad. I'm so thankful the pain pills worked! I still feel achy and can feel little waves of pain in my back, but its tolerable now. If I have to get another shot tomorrow I'll take the pain meds right away. The nurse told me they've never seen it hit someone so fast. I feel like I've been lied to by the doc, because this was EXACTLY the shot I've heard about! I think he tells me things so I don't worry, because everyone is affected differently. I would have rather known how bad it could get, so I would have been better prepared!
The other thing I'm worried about, of course, is getting sick. All my vital signs were a little elevated this morning, and my temp was 100 when I got home. For me 100 means something's wrong, because my normal temp is around 98, but the doc isn't concerned unless it goes higher. I do have to be very careful tho. I wash my hands alot!
The doc just called to see how I was doing. He said I am so sensitive to this shot-he was very surprised it affected me so quickly. He said I probably won't need another and my numbers might even go higher than needed. I hope he's right! I told him I kept telling myself that the pain meant it was working! I like that when I call the clinic with a problem he always calls me back himself later to make sure I'm ok.
Well-to wrap up--tomorrow I get my blood checked, get another shot if needed, and go back Friday for chemo(if numbers are ok). Then I'll have the "bag" until Sunday. Last chemo round I still felt pretty good the third day, and got worse after that. So hopefully I'll feel pretty good on Mother's Day, but it might affect my work week more. Oh well, not much I can do about that.
I'll update again tomorrow or Friday; please keep me in your prayers! God keep the germs away!! And that dreaded shot! ;)
Love to all!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

3 More days...But Who's Counting?

One cannot help but think about what is to come....but in the meantime, I am enjoying feeling good and eating cold things!
I had a very nice weekend; the weather has been perfect! Near 70 today! Did alot of shopping, and sitting outside. Also visited with cousin Kathy; they had a little get together for their daughter's confirmation. Was feeling pretty tired from my busy morning, so didn't stay too long, but it was nice to see her and her family.
Are there any other cousins out there? (Well, besides the ones I've heard from, obviously!) I'd love to hear from you! Sounds like we are not having a reunion this summer. Not sure if I'd be able to make it anyway! I'm still pushing facebook(its safe--don't believe everything you hear on the news!)--sign up so we can keep in touch. I wish I could see pics of everyone's kids and figure out all their names and stuff. I don't see anyone enough to keep it all straight. Family has always been important to me, but even more so now.
I'm finding I'm more bold about things too. Esp. with people. I've never been very outgoing. It wasn't that I didn't care--just didn't want to "bother" people. That's changing! (So watch out!) I've been so blessed with people who care about me and aren't afraid to show it that I want to make sure I let people know I care too. And not miss a chance to bless someone else. So, all of you that are helping me through this time are showing me how to bless others, so your blessings will continue on thru me to even more people! (That makes sense in my head!). You all are storing up treasures in Heaven, and someday God will say "well done!"
Today was the first day I didn't take any anti-nausea meds. I still have some cold sensitivity, but only if I hold something cold for a long time, or let something too cold sit on my tongue too long. I was eating a bunch of cold "finger-foods" like fruits and veggies, and all of a sudden the fingers I was holding the food with felt like they had freezer burn and I had to warm them up right away. I have some other annoying stomach problems (that are really getting on my nerves), but over all I can't complain!
The next 2 days should be good ones, and then round 3 of chemo starts Wednesday. I'm hoping it goes as well as last time because I felt pretty good those 3 days of chemo. Monday was the worst day, which was a bummer, because I was hoping to feel better by then and not worse! I had to take Mon. and Tues. off work. Thankfully there are not many days left of school!
Thanks for checking! Please pray for: lesser side effects and tummy problems; Rachel and "Bambino"; and Jaren in Iraq.
Love you all!
PS. I'm eating a Buster Bar now---yumm!!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Lovely Friday!

Glad its Friday! Today I was tired, but other than that, ok! I slept (w/o meds) until 2:30, and then slept off and on after that. Not too bad over-all. I still am taking 1 of my nausea meds regularly, and others as needed. I had to take an Ativan after work, because it just all of a sudden hit me. Had felt fine before that! Rested a little after work, but didn't sleep. Rich came home a little early and was doing yard work, so I went and sat in the sun and watched him. That's my favorite past-time->watching my husband do yardwork!! I finally picked up some sticks and then spread some plant food on the gardens. Its exciting to see all the little green sprouts coming up already. I don't have many spring plants, but there are alot of other things starting to grow.
These days are the best. I have 4 days (hopefully good ones!) before I have to do chemo round 3. There are so many things I want to get done before I feel sick again. The neat thing is everything is so exciting to me! Partly because of the "big picture", meaning I'm happy to be alive to enjoy every little thing, and partly b/c of the "small picture", meaning I feel like I'm waking up from a deep sleep and I only have a few days to enjoy everything. I don't know if that makes sense. Suffice it to say that pretty much everything makes me happy and excited!!
My cup overfloweth with blessings. 2 wonderful ladies at work gave me a basket of treats, and a big pot of Pansies today. It really brightened my day. And I know I've said this before, but I can't wait to pay it forward! I'm even clipping recipes that I think would be good to make for others when they need a meal--so someday I'll be on that list of people to ask to make someone a meal! I'm not exactly "Susie homemaker", so I sort of stayed in the background instead of jumping in and volunteering for meals. Prayer and encouragement are more my "thing". That and the fact that my own 3 children kept me very busy and were at times more than I could handle!
Busy day tomorrow. Probably more yard work, but more importantly, we have to pick up Alyssa's wedding dress!! I know the wedding is a year away, but she found the "perfect one" and had to have it! I can't wait to see it again. Then we are going to eat lunch at Eddington's (all you can eat breadsticks, oh and good soup too!), and after that I think we are going to stop at 1/2 price books to check out their big sale. Sounds like a fun day doesn't it? Its supposed to be in the 60's and sunny, so maybe I can leave my gloves at home! I've had to wear them all the time I was outside today, even tho it was near 60. My fingers really tingle easily this round.
Well, hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!! Enjoy God's beautiful creation, and spend time with loved ones!