Saturday, February 23, 2008

Dose 1 -

Well..... I decided to keep a bit of a journal... more for myself really....something to look back on...and something to jog my memory...
I wanted to keep this separate from my usual blog.....I want to be able to write this as if no-one else is reading... I want to be able to type it fast with no regard to how I phrase things... or whether it sounds ok or not...

... and its not that mind if you stumble across it and read.... you are more than welcome.

oh...and I guess the other reason is..... I don't want my other blog saturated by how I feel on a day to day basis....

so..... on the 21st February .... I officially began my Chemotherapy...
The day began early.....we needed to leave by 6.30 am to make it to my first appointment at 10am... I HATE early mornings..... especially early mornings that don't have something to look forward too...

...any way...10am.... my Heart Scan.... just a fancy Ultrasound really..... to make sure my heart was up to the poisoning it was about to receive....thankfully my ticker passed with flying colours.... and that appointment was over with quickly.

114o am....I met back with my Oncologist.....and offsider....I was given a once over.... they went through my blood results from the previous day....all good....and reviewed the Heart scan results....once again all good.....and so I had the stamp of approval...Chemo could begin....

1pm... we had an appointment with the Cancer care Nurse.....she explained everything ... it was such a detailed appointment.... and answered a lot of my questions..... we went through side effects....dosages... regimes... diet and nutrition.... supporter numbers....wig suppliers.....you name it... I felt very prepared at the end of my visit with her.

So at about 1.30pm.....I was given a pile of anti -nausea tablets.....and was sent off for a coffee and to wait for half an hour or so before my treatment began...

2pm.... I met my lovely Nurse Atsuko.... who explained the procedure and began my fist dose.... it went well....I felt fine... it had a taste.. but other than that I was ok.... Atsuko talked and sat beside me almost the entire 1.5hr.... and as it was finishing Ian and Briony came in and sat with me as well. I had plenty of company as it is in a day unit....so there were lots of other people receiving their Chemo at the same time....and it was interesting hearing their experiences....and encouragement.... they welcomed the newbie to the cocktail hour.

I was finished at about 4.30ish.....and we left.... I was feeling 'weird' but ok.....I still cant describe the 'weird' feeling....possibly more of a result of the medications.....or anxiety I had.
We had a coffee at Marion.... and I already could notice a difference in my taste buds..... coffee wasn't nearly as good as before....

...so we began our journey home.... but by about 6pm....I was feeling nauseous.....terrible ...clutch an embag nausea.... so at about 6.30pm Ian stopped and we got something to eat....and a ginger beer (we were advised this works well on nausea...and I think it definitely helped)... so I felt a little better after eating..... but the nausea pretty much continued the entire way home (motion was not my friend) I was so relieved at 9.30pm to arrive home... .and unfortunately the nausea continued all through out the night.....I was very wakeful...counting the hours until I could take my next pills.... and to top it off...I had a blinding headache..... well..I'm guessing now looking back it was a Migraine....I had visual lights flicking.... just like the few previous migraines Ive had.

22nd February....
BLERK......I woke feeling SICK..... if I laid completely motionless I was just ok.....any movement I was horrendously nauseous. My Migraine continued.....every time I drifted to sleep I dreamt weird snakey types of dreams.... mini nightmares.... so after taking all my anti- nausea meds.... Emend....Maxolon and Dexamethsone...and Panadol.... I slightly improved enough to get up and try some toast..... I still cant drink coffee...and cant see myself even persevering....its plain down-right bitter and nasty. I then began to ache all over..... like I had the flu.... although I repeatedly took my temp throughout the day....and it was always fine....Id say I was just aching as a result of the Chemo.... so I tolerated small amounts of food.... and set myself to drink as much water as possible..... it helped to flush it through....and thankfully it tasted ok...and I tolerated it well.
I spent the entire day in my bed...up for short 15min periods....then flopping back on the bed.... in the afternoon I decided a warm shower might ease the aching.... which is when I discovered I looked sunburnt.... my face.... me chest...and all across my recent surgery looked sunburnt.... and obviously it wasn't.... just another little Chemo quirk obviously...
So.... that was pretty much my day....I was a bucket of misery.....I called in sick for my night shift....and spent the day in bed..... although I was relieved that at about 4pm my nausea began to subside.... as did my headache....and I was only left with an aching body.

23rd February...
Well...... the days not over.... but so far...so good.
I woke about 3am.... that was it....after a day in bed yesterday I just didn't have a wink of sleep left..... and I was grateful that I was nausea and pain free..... I felt ok!!
So I laid there for hours....thinking... and really really thinking about the hair loss that is inevitable... apparently it will be all gone in the next two weeks.....so by 13th March (my next treatment) I wont have any left.... Im a bit anxious about how I will look.... Im not sure to try and get a wig....or whether Ill just wear a hat..... should I have my hair clipped now? ....or wait and keep it normal as long as possible?.... so many dont knows.
So today..... my teeth hurt.....brushing them was agonising....I didn't even think I just plunged my brush in...and they HURT....so very gentle brushing from now on....
I'm still looking sunburnt....
I don't feel as flash as I did laying down in bed this morning....my headache has returned slightly....I'm tired in my muscles...and the nausea is hovering....but Ive enjoyed a cup of tea... and a few spoons of porridge.... and hopefully Ill improve throughout the day.....and be able to work my night shift tonight....

26th February.. well its time for a recap of the last few days..... I managed to work my Night shift..... I was nervous all night.....I couldn't take my medications because they may have made me drowsy.....so I had to hope and pray.....fortunately it was quiet...and although I didn't sleep much....I coped.
So..... the nausea settled from about day 2 ...... and since then Ive been ok.... but very very tired.
I feel gazumped of all energy.... I have spent almost the full day Sunday in bed.... and although I cleaned the house yesterday ...I had to have a couple of naps.....I just find I cant go on.....no stamina.... everything feels weak....and tired...
Ive got a dry mouth with a weird taste .... so Ive been drinking bucket loads of water.... and my mind is foggy.... I feel like I don't follow conversations fast enough..... and so I feel very self conscious I may be rambling a bit.
My hair is still intact.... although I had it all cut short yesterday.....a very short style.... its taking a bit of getting used to.
Photos of my new hair to come..... but here is a before shot.....looking frazzled.... awaiting the big transformation...

3 comments:

Donna said...

Hi my dearest friend, I read this with such sadness that all this is happening to you and i am so far away and unable to do anything to help but you know you are in my thoughts every day. It just all seems so surreal to me, but stay positive and it will be all worth it when this is all a memory and life is once again normal. I think this journal is a great idea to just let all your thoughts flow. You know to ring me anytime of the day or night if you want a chat. Lots of love Donna :-)

Donna said...

Mardi, I have been thinking about the hair loss bit of all this and I think that will be a big thing to deal with. With the surgery there are not any outward signs to the world of anything wrong but that is different with the hairloss - you need to try to get your head around that now and I don't know what the answer is - but you will need lots of support so please call me when that starts - my work no is 41530724 - I am not sure whether it is better to do a clip early, like that lady at work, or wait as long as you can. Have you got any scarves or turban type things? Remember it is just a means to an end - and they say when your hair grows back it is thicker and healthier than ever.
talk to you later, love from Qld

Donna said...

I love the photo - it is very you but I can see you have lots on your mind. You just need to rest plenty and let you body deal with the drugs - it is good that you have done some work - that helps keep life "normal" if that is at all possible. Wish we were there to help you but I know you have lots of love and support from many people and places - we luv u heaps