My apologies for not updating sooner. Last time I wrote I had just
started radiation on the center of my upper chest, and was about to
begin chemo. I had 10 treatments of the radiation, and that is now
over, thank goodness!
Radiating that part of my chest affected my
esophagus, and it was difficult swallowing for about a week. I would
take a bite of food, but have to swallow it in tiny parts. Meals became
a long ordeal for me. Even the kids finished at least one-half hour
before I did, and they're the slowest eaters on the planet! But that has
improved greatly over just the last couple of days, so mealtimes aren't
as long now.
I also finished the first round of chemo which consisted of one
treatment a week for three weeks. I received Taxotere, and was also
given Herceptin, which is more of a prevention drug. Again, thankfully
the side effects were minimal. I had slight bone pain in my upper arms,
but no nausea, at least not from the chemo.
See, I'm a slow learner sometimes, or maybe it's chemo brain. I like
the chemo brain excuse best.
When I was first starting to have pain in my left shoulder before I knew
it was cancer coming back, I had gotten a pain medication to help me
sleep (oxycontin). At night it was fine, but during the day it would
make me vomit, so I didn't use it during the day. That was back in
Fast forward to January and I'm looking for something that
will dull the bone pain. I find the oxycontin and took it before my
radiation treatment in the morning. Lying flat for the radiation was
fine, but as soon as I got up, I knew I was in trouble. I spent much of
the day in front of the toilet since I couldn't keep down anti-nausea
medication. I also wrote BARF in black letters across the bottle of
oxycontin. Don't think I'll be making that mistake again!
Day to day I'm feeling pretty good. Naps are a necessity, or I just hit
a wall by late afternoon (and sometimes late morning!). My brother got
me into nutritional supplements which has improved my energy. I also
believe it is helping my body fight because my blood count this week was
good. A drop in the white count is always a concern while on chemo, but
my counts are not anywhere near a dangerous level. Last year when I was
going through chemo I had to have shots to increase my counts. They
hurt and made my bones ache, so I'm happy not to have them again!
The cough is also still bothering me. I had another chest x-ray this
week which didn't show anything significant, but I will be seeing the
pulmonologist again to see what he thinks.
Because the chemo is three weeks on, one week off, I have the next week
off of treatments. It's going to be a great week since it's our
daughter's 8th birthday (yikes!) and my parents are coming into town. A
little pampering from the folks never hurts!
Until next time...
The Happy Cancer Patient, again
You can e-mail Pam Daale at Pam_Daale@TheDenverChannel.com
Previous Journal Entries:
- January 19, 2004: Pam's Journal: Tough Decisions
- December 29, 2003: Pam's Journal: Slash, Burn, and Poison
- December 22, 2003: Pam Daale: At It Again
- October 24, 2003: Oct. 24, 2003: This Week's Hero A Familiar Face To Viewers
- July 1, 2003: Pam's Journal: Dad's Day
- June 10, 2003: Pam's Journal: How I Cope
- May 31, 2003: Pam's Journal -- Free At Last!
- May 25, 2003: Pam's Journal: Changed Forever?
May 17, 2003: Pam's Journal: To Reconstruct or not to Reconstruct
- May 11, 2003: Pam's Journal: Not Looking So Much Like 'Mom' These Days
- May 4, 2003: Pam's Journal: Going Through The Mastectomy
- April 25, 2003: Pam Daale Recovering After Bilateral Mastectomy
- April 14, 2003: Pam's Journal: On To The Next Phase
- April 8, 2003: Pam's Journal: My Final Days Before Mastectomy
March 31, 2003: Pam's Journal: When Will Hair Grow Back?
- March 10, 2003: Pam's Journal: Final Chapter
- March 3, 2003: Pam's Journal: Final Chemo Treatment
February 24, 2003: Pam's Journal: Strange Happenings
- February 17, 2003: Pam's Journal: Kids, Cancer, and Coping
- February 3, 2003: Pam's Journal: Super Soapbox
- Jan. 13, 2003: Pam's Journal: Chemo, Take Six
- Jan. 6, 2003: Pam's Journal: The Hair Thing Revisited
- December 30, 2002: Pam's Journal: Inside Out
- December 16, 2002: Pam's Journal: Oh, What a Difference!
- December 8, 2002: Pam's Journal: Moving Forward
- December 1, 2002: Pam's Journal: Medical Miracles
November 24, 2002: Pam's Journal: Halfway Mark
- November 18, 2002: Pam's Journal: Picking Bones With Advertisers
November 10, 2002: Pam's Journal: It's In The GenesNovember 3, 2002: Pam's Journal: Emotional RollercoasterOctober 28, 2002: Pam's Journal: Chemo, Take Three
- October 26, 2002: Oct. 25, 2002: Hero Helps Move Women Through Cancer Journey
- October 22, 2002: Pam's Journal: The Hair Thing
- October 21, 2002: Pam's Journal: An Uneventful Week
- October 18, 2002: Spa, Fitness Center Pampers Cancer Patients
- October 7, 2002: 54,587 Join Race For The Cure
- October 7, 2002: Pam's Journal: The Race
- October 7, 2002: Pam's Personal Race For The Cure
- October 4, 2002: Pam Tells Of Her Chemo Progress
- October 4, 2002: Pam's Journal: Never More Than You Can Handle
- October 1, 2002: Pam's Journal: Chemo, Take Two
- September 21, 2002: Pam's Story: My Battle With Cancer
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