All I can Do is Smile


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Round 1 Done

Last week was, in a word, exhausting. Fatigue still continues to be one of the main side effects I’m experiencing and my doc says that will compound as the treatments continue. The good news is I seem to tolerate the chemotherapy very well. There was a rough patch last week on the 2nd day after chemo, but I’m got an anti-nausea plan I’m working this time around that seems to be working well. That, and taxol has less pronounced side effects than the cisplatin.

I’m feeling pretty darn good, all things considered. And, I have a whole week off next week!

We met with the genetic department and I DO have a positive marker on the BRCA1 gene. We’ll cross that bridge after we get through this treatment. At least we now know the reason for this diagnosis.

My post-op visit went well too. I’ve been cleared to ride my bike on a trainer, so I’m excited to get a bit of activity outside of walking into my day.

Many thanks to this week’s drivers. Great seeing everyone. I’m definitely up for visitors next week if I keep feeling good.

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Driving Schedule Update

Hi all,

After completing my first round of IV and IP, I am updating the driving schedule each day so it includes two shifts. This will also give other folks who want to drive an opportunity to do so, since I heard from quite a few people that they were bummed the spots were full.

Please check out the updated schedule and information about what to expect over here.

Thanks as always for being my awesome tribe!


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The Day After

So far, I’m feeling good. My doc gave me a host of anti-nausea medication and they seem to be doing their job. I’ve been able to eat on schedule. I’m SUPER tired, so I’m sticking close to bed today and watching some Netflix.

Update 2:05pm – My afternoon meal is telling me something! Chicken noodle soup and a nap are on the agenda. Still feeling good!
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IP Play by Play

If you want to follow along, I’ll update as I can. Discharge today is a go!

9:30am – hydration begins. 500mL. The bag has been refrigerated so its an interesting sensation in my veins. Feels like I have an ice pack on my forearm.

10:20am – numbing cream put on port area. Its located beneath my skin so they have to stick me with a needle into the center of the port. The cream stays on approx 30 min.

11:00am – needle into port. Missed the first time. Nailed it the second time. The needle didn’t hurt but the pressure of finding the center by touching and pressing on the port did. Its obviously still tender from yesterday’s surgery. Premeds begin. Zofran, decadron, emend.

1:00pm – hydration into the port. 500mL

1:40pm – cysplatin into the port. 1L The bag is warmed before they administer.

3:00pm – hydration into the port. 500mL feeling very full in my belly. Hydration into IV. 1L.

4:00pm – flip side to side every 15 minutes for one hour. Distributes the fluid through the abdomen.

5:00pm – monitoring for an hour just to make sure no weird reactions and what not.

6:00pm – discharge! Going home.


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And it begins…

I started a blog post yesterday explaining the process of how there are quite a few pre-medications they give me before they actually begin chemo. This includes pepcid, zofran, and benadryl. Welp, the bendryl knocked me out completely. Which, I suppose, isn’t so bad in the grand scheme of things. I slept through my 1st chemo treatment, didn’t have any adverse affects, and got a full night’s sleep to boot. (Less, the usual hospital interruptions.)

So, those of you who signed up for chemo drives, take note: it’s more like a full day commitment versus just 4 hours. I will update the schedule accordingly later.

Today, brings my first experience with IP chemo. Pre-meds are to begin around 9am. I’ve been told that the main discomfort will be in the abdomen as they’ll be getting close to 2L of liquid in there. A lot of pressure is to be expected. The real suck begins tomorrow as the effects of the chemo start. I’m anticipating not staying in hospital another night, but we’ll take that as it comes.

I’ve been eating like a champ. The hospital food is surprisingly good and they’ve give a lot of options. What I’ve had to remember is to order extra food so I can have snacks in between meals since I get full so quickly.

Overall, my spirits are high and I’m feeling more optimistic than ever. This cancer doesn’t stand a chance. Thanks as always for your comments and well wishes. They really make a difference. XOXO