Round 2Posted: July 14, 2014
The sleeping communist cancer cells in the cervical tumor woke up earlier this year and spread to my lungs also. We discovered it when I couldn’t go to the bathroom “normally” for me. It was, in short, a mess. I have been using intermittent catheters ever since, because the communist tumor has wrapped itself around my bladder. However comma I was shortly put back into chemo therapy using the same cocktail as first time around as it had been 14 months since my last treatment back in February of 2013. Treatment commenced in April of this year.
The aforementioned cancer cell killing cocktail consisted of Paclitaxel + Carboplatin. Higher doses than last time (going for the hard punch in the nose). Unfortunately, during the second treatment in June, I exhibited pretty serious reaction to the carboplatin. According to my husband person, my entire head suddenly turned the color of a “rock lobster” and hives broke out on my arms. Good grief. Well, that was gotten under control and I went home as normal.
The third treatment in July consisted of the usual anti-nausea bag, anti-allergic bag (which puts me to sleep) and the Paclitaxel. A cat-scan was done a couple of days prior to my fourth treatment earlier this month.
Unfortunately, the level of kill was not as hoped. While the goobers on my lungs shrunk pretty darned well, the cervical tumor only had a small kill rate. I am sure that wasn’t a total surprise to the Oncologist, but it wasn’t music to my ears. That said, I should have suspected as I was still needing to cath 3 times a day, sometimes 4.
The Onc talked with us for a time and received a phone call during our visit. He had mentioned some “older drugs” he might like to try to knock this down again. Among the potential side-effects was dementia-like effect on my brain which could be permanent. Ewww. Then again, without treatment I will die sooner than later. Now after the Onc left the room to take that call, I asked my husband person, “why hasn’t he mentioned radiation?”
So when the Doc came back in I asked him, “what about radiation?” Well his face lit up and we discussed the issue and an appointment was set for this Wednesday (July 16th) with a radiologist with whom this Onc works frequently. We are leaving this appointment and outcome in the Lord’s hands.
Either way, I will be taking a ‘oral chemo’ pill and the Doc is thinking that will take care of the goobers on my lungs. Yea.
I have learned two very valuable lessons during this time. First, I am not only ‘suck in my ways,’ I don’t know how to ‘go with the flow’ and alter my thinking very well. Not a total surprise as I had no children (who are, according to parents I talk with are fabulous “go with the flow” teachers). So I need to be willing to alter my thinking as a matter of course.
The second lesson I learned was more profound for yours truly. During our meeting with the Onc, I made the following statement, ‘without the chemo therapy, even if taking the oral (not expected to really affect the main tumor), this is going to grow like crazy again and I could die next week.’ Ok, a little drastic (ok, a lot), but that was my thinking at the moment.
The Doc’s reply astonished me for a time. His said, “right now there is nothing life threatening. None of your organs are in danger at this time.” WOW !
After munging on this for some time, I came to the following realization — I have a chronic condition. Now you may be thinking, yea, so what? The so what for me is that there are hundreds of thousands of people living with chronic conditions. Many of those conditions can very well lead to early death.
The word “cancer” is just a word to describe the type of chronic condition I have and need to live with. And what has that done for me? It has rid me of the deep-seeded fear I have of the word/condition “cancer.” I am now more in control as I can approach things with objectively, having been released from the “fear” of cancer. I am better equipped to “go with the flow.”
I Are Here
And Every Day is a Holiday!!