Thursday, October 13, 2016

Oh boy! OH BOY!

It is hard to believe that so much has happened since my last blogpost and I have not kept people updated. Yes, I received a TITANIUM BARD (brand name) port placed on my upper right side of my chest. The biggest pain with it is carrying the chemo and infusion pump around and not forgetting to grab it or down it goes!  I have received not one but two infusions of chemotherapy. The second infusion was on Monday, October 12. I received the Irinotecan and pre meds at Crossroads Cancer Center in Effingham. My white count was 4 at my first infusion and at my bloodwork on Monday, it was 2. My dr asked me to wait before sending me home as they were checking the leukocytes and although he doubted they were over 1,000....IF they were, he would ok me to get chemo. Well, to his surprise, they were over 1,200 so we proceeded. Next Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I will go to RMH (local hospital) to get the Neupogen shots. This will boost my white count and hopefully I will have minimal side effects from those shots. I had severe bone pain the last time I shot up these pretty puppies!! AND, last time I had to take these shots, they were either sent home with me or I got them at my local pharmacy....but things have changed and I have to go to outpatient surgery to get the shots.
     I will probably stay very close to home until I start the Neupogen shots as Dr. Dy said I could get pneumonia very easily over the next 5-7 days if I came into contact with cold like germs. My first round of chemo was a piece of cake until Friday evening (my infusions are always on Wednesday) and I could start to feel my body go into low gear. I went to bed at 8 pm-ish and woke up at 6:30 am...had my hot green tea, then back to bed at 7:30 am and I SLEPT soundly until 1:30 pm. WOW!  I rested the rest of Saturday just watching tv. I struggled to get presentable for my second grandchild's 5th birthday party on Sunday, then back home into my jammies. It took a few more days before I was ready to be "normal" (somewhat anyway).
     So, tonight I went to a visitation of a cancer patient and even more importantly, a very beautiful friend with an amazing family. My heart just hurts for them. It was the second death of a cancer friend that has passed this last week. Patti Means and I met up in Houston and both had the same cancer. We went to supper with our husbands and she brought souvenirs from Seattle, Washington. She was a true gem and I will miss our visits.
     I have been so very blessed to have friends and family bring in food on the days I didn't even get dressed. Pat can fix the easy stuff but not homemade chicken and noodle soup or homemade chicken and mom came out and fixed red potatoes, pork steak, homemade gravy, and green beans. It was a meal my mom used to fix when we were little and it reminded me of us all sitting around the was always a good meal!! Tonight, we had corn chowder at my daughter, Amy's and it was awesome....better than I was expecting!! ;-)  Jennifer has had friends call to bring a meal on those "bad days" and has started a calendar if you are interested in bringing a meal. They are such a help. I cannot have nuts, popcorn, or things that are harder for me to process. My friend Debbie Weiler brought a cold salad with fruit, Cool Whip, and cream cheese and it just tasted good of an evening.
     So....I am slowly marching...and it will get a little slower before I climb back out of the hole I feel like I will be in by Saturday. Over this past weekend, I cleaned and washed some windows, washed linens, put out fall decorations, I even pulled some weeds in the main flower I DO have several good days before it is time for chemo again.
Tomorrow (Friday), I go back to Crossroads to get my chemo pump removed. YES! 
     I had a fellow cholangiocarcinoma patient who is NED (no evidence of disease for those of you who do not know the cancer technology). Julie Tupker and her husband "Tup" came in on Tuesday afternoon and we had the best supper in town at Olde Tyme Steakhouse before coming back to our house where they spent the night with us! Julie and I talked past 11 pm and I knew I had chemo the next day or I KNOW we could have talked all night!!  What a joy to visit with a fellow CC survivor....and they are from Iowa but on their way to Nashville so we were a nice little pit stop on their mini vacation. 
     In closing, I just want to thank my friends and family for prayers, thoughts, messages, texts, and hugs. Nothing tugs at my heart more than seeing another family grieving for a family member. Life...and death are a part of our life cycle....but I do believe both ladies I know that has recently passed had angels waiting on them. NO DOUBT IN MY MIND!
     I will try and keep you all updated a little sooner. It just depends on how I feel.

Hugs and God Bless you!!

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