Friday, June 13, 2014

Cancer ~ This Kind of Sucks

The oncologists agreed that since I would be doing Chemo, perhaps a colonoscopy should be ran.  Since I had an abnormal EKG when I had my port installed, they thought I should also follow up with a cardiologist to make sure my heart was up for Chemo.  The colonoscopy was scheduled and prepared for.  Is there many things worse than the night before the colonoscopy?  I stayed up the night before drinking the giant sized Gatorade with a bottle of Miralax dumped in it.  I followed with the recommended dosages of Dulcolax.  Morning came and my sweet sister picked me up for first the colonoscopy in the morning, and then the Echo Cardiogram of my heart in the after noon. Lola had driven down from Centerville  (a sizable drive) to be my moral support, care giver, and encourage r.  I was feeling pretty darn yucky when I got in her car, but Lola being Lola had thought to bring a barf bag.  I chalked my nausea up to the medicines I had to take.  The colonoscopy went off without a hitch.  All was well....except for me.  I felt like I was going to die.  I told Lola I would need to reschedule my heart tests.  I needed to go home.  We were told I should to to American Fork Hospital and have some fluids administered intravenously, so Susan and Rainee met us there. I was then taken home and thankfully snuggled down in my bed.  Since my will is in place, and since I was certain I was dying, in the middle of the night I planned my funeral.  I could hear a part of my brain figure my cremation costs.  Then I would be planning the food, prayers, video clips, etc, etc. etc.

The next morning I woke to more fluid draining from the point of incision; this time it was a brownish-green color.  I told Mark I was going to emergency.  He told me he was taking me.  He called Susan and Rainee and once again my troupe was in place.  The diagnosis was simple.  The breast had become infected.  A bag of Intravenous antibiotics were flushed in to me.  The emergency room doctor called my surgeon and verified I would be sent home with added antibiotics and should see the surgeon the next day.  The next day, I went to my surgeon's office to be seen by his PA and his nurse.  They tool samples of the infection to have it checked and I went home.
My Chemo therapy of my triple x cancer cells was being delayed because of an infection caused by fluids escaping the incisions.  I was put on further antibiotics.  The next day my surgeon called and said after reviewing my situation and the problems that I had, that on the following Tuesday they would go in and either clean out the breast or do a mastectomy. I called Lola and told her what he had said and Lola got on the line and made me an appointment with a doctor from the Huntsman Center.  She turned out to be just what I needed.  She was caring, compassionate,thorough.  She scheduled an MRI to find out exactly what we were looking at.  She found another cyst in the same breast.  A biopsy had been done on it and came back negative, but the size and shape worried her.  Apparently, woman with Triple X also run a chance of having a separate cancer type in the same breast.  After weighing the options of more lumpectomies, biopsies, etc. I asked her to just remove it.  More antibiotics were ordered and chemo was scheduled.  First Chemo, then Mastectomy, Radiation and Reconstructive Surgery.  A Plan was in place.

June  4 was my first chemo treatment.  You are given a tube of cream that you spread about 1/4" thick over your port.  This is done about 1/2 hour before you go for chemo.  This cream is covered with plastic wrap.  This process numbs where the port is at.  Having the needle inserted into the port was a piece of cake.  There was no pain at all.  My problem began with the four steroids I was to take the day before Chemo and the day after Chemo.  The steroids are suppose to help build resistance  I ended up getting a four day headache that would not go away.  I had been given pain medicine for the headaches that would only hold the pain at bay for about two hours.  And with PAIN MEDICINE COMES THE WONDER WORLD OF CONSTIPATION.  THEN ADD TO IT THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF YEAST INFECTION BROUGHT ON BY THE ANTIBIOTICS.

So my first bout of chemo was a learner and it sucked.  The 9th of June was to be Danny's and my 50th wedding anniversary...That day I was ready to bag chemo ever again.  But then, enter my children. They came in the force they always come in.  There is Crying.  There is Get Up and Get Busy, it will make you feel better, There's the never ending "Where are we going to Eat?"  There is the laughter in the house. There is the "What can I do for you Mommie?"  "I'll drive down from Idaho for your next treatment.  Mom, I'm flying down from Alaska tomorrow to be with you. "Mom, when you feel like it come on home." And within a matter of hours my crazy bunch of children are planning to take me to San Diego. To the ocean, the sands, peace.  Two of my loves have left me.  Now stands the Magnificent 7.

With this type of love.  I've  gotta Win!