So, Stacey and I set out to chemo at 7:45 and Dawn, Dad and Josiah headed north. I noticed again today that my right hand is swollen and the scale showed the puffiness too (although I won't lie, I have been filling up on the rich holiday food). I am already taking a daily pill to help the fluid build up but with two weeks left, the nurse is adding another. Two more weeks and then we start moving in the opposite direction and I can't wait!
There are a few things going on this week. The fluid retention is one of the lingering issues. But there is a little good news/bad news thing this week. For the last few weeks I have had polish on my nails and I thought the neuropathy was getting worse with all the pain I had in the tips of my fingers. Truth is, it isn't the neuropathy. I haven't gone up on my meds for that all week and I think we are holding steady.
When I took off my old polish I saw what has been going on with my fingernails these last couple weeks when everyone has been complementing me on my fingernail color. I had no idea what was going on under that great new color. Seems that the first four rounds of the stronger chemo have made it to the ends of my nails through these last couple months. Now the top half of my nails are pulling away from the nail bed.
|Taxol and Potassium at the same time|
Another surprise today was that I was low in potassium from the lasic medication I take for the fluid every day. Seems that through the holiday I forgot to eat my banana for breakfast and before bed and eat a sweet potato during the day. So, I got a potassium infusion as well which originally was going to add on two extra hours. Thankfully, they checked and it could be given with the Taxol and so one hour was with the chemo, and I had only one extra hour at the end instead of two.
Stacey and I packed a new card game Zachary got called Sushi Go! and we figured out the rules and played for an hour because it ends up to be pretty fun. We had also come in armed with adult coloring books and markers/colored pencils so we spent some time doing that too. I got to have a foot massage today as well. I got through my "sleepy" stage and I dozed off a little bit while Stacey worked on the January page of the coloring calendar that she got from her brother for Christmas.
It was a pleasant morning. The papers I have signed and my records have been sent to Mayo to get their input on the radiation question. My nurse isn't sure on timing since it is the holidays but hopefully we hear back soon so we can make the next plan. I like plans.
Other than that, life is happening all around and over the weekend when all of the family traditions were going on I was present for them all. I did have less energy in the preparations and didn't do as much. I look forward to sharing some of that in the next week or so.
Specific prayers for the homestretch...
- That I remember to drink my water and that with the help of these meds the fluid will go down. The new one today working with the one I have been taking is supposed to stabilize my potassium. Please pray that it does. Right hand and arm is pretty puffy tonight and painful. I would really love to see improvement in the morning.
- Please pray for relief for the pain in my fingers. It is good news that the pain is not neuropathy but because it isn't there is no pain relief. It is very hard to do every day things.
- Praise! The neuropathy seems to be at a minimum without the maximum drug intervention.
- Please pray as I come up to a new transition in treatment. Although having chemo come to an end is a great feeling, there is a lot to say about routine and seeing the great people there at the clinic who have made this whole experience tolerable and even a little more than that on most days. I have met some great people who have a calling more than just a job. I am thankful for that.
- Please pray James 1:5 as we are at another place where we have decisions to make. Knowing that God is sovereign over my life is my lifeline. To be honest though...I REALLY want to be done with cancer.
- Prayers that our family can continue to thrive through this. It brings me to tears to see and hear my children and how they are growing through this. It is humbling the things they are teaching me.
- Pray for my Grandma Bushlack. The end of life is hard. At 96 she has lived a full life and the last few years have been very difficult for her. The visit today was good for all who were there and I praise God that Dad, Sy and Dawn could give just a little bit of themselves to Grandma today.
- Praise for another amazing Christmas celebration with my family and for December and a door full of Christmas cards and pictures from people we love. A little small p.s. to that would be that I would love to praise Him that I was able to get all of my homemade gifts done and give them. It really helped my giver's heart during this time when I am trying to learn to receive gracefully.