Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Vet

I'm taking Nutsy to the vet for an overdue checkup soon, and it's making me sad. I brought out Trigger's cat carrier for the first time since. Well, it's not specifically her carrier... but it had a piece of masking tape with her name on it from a long time ago, and I haven't used it for any of the other kitties in a while. So yeah, I guess it was her carrier. :( Nutsy came over and sniffed the carrier thoroughly. She clearly smelled Trigger, it was ve sad.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Halfway Thru Chemo

I'm halfway thru chemo, wheeee! Time has gone really fast, I think it's because the first 2 months of AC put me in a perma-fog. Now things are better. I had Taxol #3 yesterday, it was the best of my treatments so far. I got Benadryl pills instead of in the IV, so I didn't get all wonky. Also, the waiting room was empty so we got a chair quickly, and we got to sit in a private room in the back with the sun shining in. Miles and I played Gin Rummy and made-up card tricks, and the time went fast. Instead of finishing after 5 pm like we predicted, we got out of there around 3:30! And I even felt good enough to stop and eat lunch on the way home. I crashed for a few hours when we got home though, like usual.

I've been feeling pretty good lately. :)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Menopause Sucks!

The sample inhaler medication (Advair) that the pulmonologist gave me is scary and evil. Besides having some weird "black box warning label" and a huge list of awful side effects which he failed to mention... I can't sleep whatsoever when I take it. I took it for 3 days, and for 3 days I saw the sun come up. Unfortunately, it seemed to help my breathing, and now that I stopped taking it the shortness of breath is back. I'm not sure what to do. I hate doctors. Except for my beloved Dr. Awesome.

I'm also having menopausal hot flashes, mostly when I'm trying to sleep. Note to self: don't ever go into menopause because it sucks! There is a good chance that after I'm done with chemo and my body readjusts, my period will come back. I sure hope so. And if not, then well, at least we have the frozen embryos! Weird!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Eel-Cats and Turtle-Cats

I had Taxol #2 today. It went so-so. They gave me 50mg of Benadryl in my IV, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. It made me feel so weird and loopy... I felt super drunk but even more. I couldn't speak and was afraid to drink water because I thought I would drop the cup. It was really weird and I didn't like it. But the Taxol itself went alright. I came home and slept for a few hours. Oh yeah, when we were leaving chemo, the nurse told us that an older couple commented to her that they saw Miles and I in the waiting room and thought we were such a vibrant young couple so much in love. Aww, that was really nice to hear.

Last night I had a bizarre dream. There was a fishtank in my brother's room with a giant yellow eel. The eel started came out of the water and morphed into a sopping wet cat. It ran out of the room and went to prowl the house. A few minutes later it came over and jumped in my lap and started purring. I thought it was Trigger come back to me and started talking to it, and soon realized it was definitely not Trigger. Then it was hanging out on the bed with me and Joseph. Joseph did a little somersault and the weird cat copied him, and then morphed into Joseph-color. I pet it some more and discovered a zipper on its back. I unzipped the cat and it just had pillow stuffing inside. In the meantime, my Mom had called The Wall Street Journal to do a story about the cat. Then all of the sudden Trigger was on the bed with us as well. She locked eyes with me and looked so sad. I started crying and told her I missed her so much, but that she didn't belong here anymore and that she needed to go back even though I didn't want her to. We talked for a while, and then she was gone. The Wall Street Journal showed up, but zipper cat had disappeared. The end. I know it's boring to read other people's dreams, so mostly this is for my benefit so I'll remember this awesome dream.

During my chemo nap I also had a weird dream. I was at a dinner party and we were playing a game. I correctly figured out that the poker hand of 9s full of 10s represented The Cure's "Pictures of You." I know, it doesn't make any sense.

I also uploaded some PHOTOS from my camera today.

Here is the cat party that happened the day before Trigger passed. I'm glad all three got to spend a little last cuddle time together:

Me on the plane with a nasty cold. Miles made me wear a facemask so I didn't get even sicker:

Steak & chicken tenders in-room dining!

After I woke up from my chemo nap I was still kind of loopy and had this bright idea:

I like this one a lot:

My bald head:

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Today I saw a lung specialist to see why I'm having such awful bouts of shortness of breath. Because it's so sporadic, he thinks I may have asthma. Awesome, more health problems! Just kidding. If it really is asthma I'm thankful because there are so many worse things I envisioned causing it. But still... asthma? That was weird to hear. So he gave me a couple of inhalers to try for two weeks to see if they help my attacks. I'm very glad someone's finally trying to do something about it, because my oncologist has been so unhelpful.

I've been complaining a lot lately, so I'd like to talk about something nice: what an awesome, caring, handsome, funny, and understanding husband (+ best friend/LOML/caretaker) I have! Even though it's been a few months, it's still so new to say "husband," I love it! Miles has always been an amazing dude, and so clearly the one for me. But since my diagnosis he's really gone above and beyond as the most caring husband ever. He hangs out with me during my long hours in the chemo chair. He preemptively plans his schedule to make sure he's there if he thinks I might be feeling ill or needing him. He makes me awesome healthy smoothies in the morning. He cheers me up when I make the mistake of reading the "Rememberance Board" on YSC. He brightens up my miserable work days with a LOML text. Remember when I used to count the number of days in a row we'd been together (because after our first date we never spent a day apart)? Well, it's been four years now!!! And I'm still thanking my lucky stars! I love, lurve, luff, luv you, Miles, you are the LOML!!

Monday, February 9, 2009

So Sick and Tired

I'm sick and tired. I've had a full-blown cold for 2 weeks now. It feels like it's finally (hopefully?) easing up a little bit. It just sucks that my body isn't able to fight it off like normal. Just another great benefit of chemo! Just kidding. Chemo is hard, but I know it's doing wonders for my "long-run," which is what really matters. I don't really have much to say. Just plugging away, trying to keep my energy and spirits up. Trying to wear the Buddha half-smile, which helps.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Chemo #5 Done

This morning was Chemo Round #5. I started Taxol today. It took forever -- they had to pump me full of pre-meds, and the Taxol itself had to go in slowly because of potential allergic reactions. All in all though, I feel better post-Taxol than I felt post-AC. I came home and slept for a few hours, and I'm still thoroughly wiped out. But I don't feel the fogginess that came with AC, I'm very thankful for this. Taxol may still give me some new side effects... but we'll see.

My Taxol treatment will be weekly for the next 12 weeks. Knowing that we wouldn't really be able to make plans and go anywhere for the next 12 weeks, Miles and I got away for a couple days right before Taxol. It was not a good idea. I was sick with a cold or something, and with my weak immune system I just got sicker while we were away. Luckily I feel like I'm slowly on the mend now. And still, it was nice to get away from the daily cancer/treatment grind for a short time.

It's hard not to get depressed every now and then. I read stories about Stage 1 girls who suddenly metastasize to Stage 4 because their cancer spread undetected through the bloodstream. It's definitely scary. I have to continuously tell myself that worrying about it does me absolutely no good. Miles makes a good point when he reminds me that worrying about it now will certainly not prepare me for it if it ever were to happen, and if it never happens I will just have wasted that time worrying. I also have to remember that for every devastating cancer story, there is an equally uplifting cancer survival story. I also have to remember that there are so many things that we do have to be thankful for right now. The fact that it hadn't spread to my lymph nodes. The fact that my tumor was relatively small, less than 2 cm. The fact that I'm officially Stage 1 right now. The fact that my lumpectomy got clear margins, meaning they effectively removed the entire cancerous tumor. The fact that chemo has a very high chance of eliminating anything remaining or anything potentially dangerous to me in the future. The fact that radiation will increase my chances as well by obliterating any microscopic bits that may (but likely not) remain in my breast. The fact that I've found the love of my life, and he stands beside me every second of this little life hiccup. There are so countless things to be thankful for. Still, I guess it's only human that I occasionally freak-out and worry. I will certainly benefit from learning how to better live in the moment, which is something I'm striving for.