I title my post thusly ‘cuz I have a million tests this week.
When we last spoke I was awaiting the results of my lymph node biopsies. The surgeons hunch was unfortunately correct, many of my nodes were positive for cancer. 5 of 8. What does this mean, you ask? It means the cancer is more aggressive then previously believed. It means my staging is now classified as 2 (still early). It means I will need radiation after chemo. It also means those sneaky lil cells could be hiding out somewhere in my body like the dirty squatters they are. My oncologist thinks it is highly UNlikely that they have set up camp anywhere but we need to check anyway.
Today I had a bone scan- nailed it. A quick shot of nuclear medicine in a vein (which is no longer easy to find as all the “good ones” are in my newly “off limits” arm), then come back 3 hours later and have a very still lay down while a square thingy slowly scans me front and back. I peaked over at the technician’s screen after it was done scanning but before I was allowed to get off the table and caught a glimpse of my skeleton, so freekin cool, I really hope I can have a copy of the picture, who wouldn’t want to have a picture of their bones.
Tomorrow I have a second follow up with the surgeon. The first one, last week, went really well and I am anticipating more of the same. I have been doing my exercises and taking it easy when my body tells me to, drinking lots of water and taking my vitamins. I interoperated his “let the tape stitches fall off when they are ready” as -peel them off in the shower as they get raggedy looking and don’t hurt as I do so, they are almost all off.
I also have a CT scan of my chest and abdomen this week. Drink the goo, don’t eat, more scanning.
I meet with the oncology nurse and learn all the fun things I need to know about chemo and herceptin and never wanted to ask. Later I have the same kind of meeting with the radiologist. Then wait.
First round of chemo is anticipated to be May 24th- it will be a long one as they monitor my body to check its reactions to the stuff. Then I go back every week for 18 weeks. Every week I get herceptin (a targeted therapy for Her2 positive cancer) and every 3 weeks the chemo a combination of taxotere (which stops those cells from dividing and multiplying) and Carboplatin (made from platinum atoms which knock those succas out). While I was out for the surgery the doctors implanted a port on the right side of my chest. It is under my skin and gives the doctors direct access to a vein for all these treatments. And away we go. I plan on winning chemo the way I am winning surgery recovery because that’s how I roll.
I worked for a bit this morning and was so happy to see those muchkins. I got many hugs and professions of love and am looking forward to being back there every day. They are amazing vessels of joy and they crack me up. I start chemo the same weekend of graduation so my mom will be here to be with me for both. I can tell you right now I will only be crying at one of them and its not going to be in the infusion room y’all. It is going to be in the oak shaded play yard where I have watched lil cuties grow, mature and play for the last year. Where they have learned their words and how to use them, where they have scrapped their knees and elbows and most importantly where they have found their friends and their voices. Did I mention I love my job?