Not really. Not in the long run obviously. Cancer is a killer. But you go from feeling just fine physically while knowing you have cancer inside of you, to feeling incredibly sick and weak from chemo while trying to kill the cancer.
Left untreated, the cancer would continue to grow and spread and eventually take over various parts of my body until I could no longer function normally, and eventually my body would shut down. I know this. And this chemo sickness is temporary. I know that this is what I have to do to treat my cancer. But man, was I sick for the last couple of days!
I am finally on the upswing from the second treatment. Still have to be careful what I eat and how much, but finally I ate last night. For both of my treatments so far, I reach a point after a couple of days of nausea where I crave one of my husband’s grilled burgers. I know when I reach that point, I am at the crest of the hill finally. I was slow eating it, but it was so good, and afterward, my stomach felt more stable. I am still weak and slow, but I’m upright. I even made my husband some day after Father’s Day coffee this morning to make up for not being able to do anything for him yesterday.
My hair is incredibly thin now. It lays flat and limp against my head. Last night Reagan gave me a back rub and while she was sitting behind me, she said, “Mom, you have some bald spots now”. I figured that was coming sooner or later.
Every morning I go out on the back deck and comb through my hair. An alarming amount comes out each time. I am at that point where I need to shave it, but have been too sick to even care.
I told my friend that it sounds weird to use the word lucky when talking about cancer, but I do feel that way. Lucky that it is breast cancer which can be very curable, especially when you have the estrogen and progesterone receptor positive one like I do. Lucky that I can feel the cancer physically and knew already that since I started chemo, it had begun to soften and was shrinking. If I had a cancer that was in my bones or my abdomen, I would have to wait for an MRI or PET scan to see the results, but with breast cancer, I can check on it every day.
So, the good news is that at my exam last week, they officially confirmed that my cancer was definitely smaller since we started chemo. When diagnosed, it was 5.5 cm by 4.5 cm. Last week after only one chemo treatment, it was 4 cm by 3 cm. She said that was a great response for only one treatment, so I am feeling pretty lucky right now, sick or not.
I am home from work for a couple more days. I will work when I can, and rest when I can’t. I have leave time I can use if I can’t make up all my hours. Today is starting out to be a beautiful sunny day. I am lucky.