I’m all over the place today, so I’m going to get out what I’m feeling and thinking and hope it makes sense.
Yesterday I had a new side effect: the soles of my feet began hurting. I knew that was a possibility. I didn’t do anything about it last night – because I didn’t wanna – but this morning I applied lotion and put socks on. They no longer hurt, so yay for easy fixes. (Except I hate wearing socks, but I’ll deal with it.)
I’ve got semi-constant low-level nausea. Not enough to make me sick or reach for the saltines, but it is a bit annoying. Oh well. More water! Drink more water! Seriously – that seems to take care of a lot of issues. Headache? Drink more water! Constipation? Drink more water! Angry about threats to our democracy? Drink more water! (Maybe it doesn’t work with that, but fighting for our country is thirsty work, so it can’t hurt, right?)
(Told you I was all over the place.)
Mom and Dad left this morning. If they’d stayed any longer, we all would have been past our freshness dates. I needed them here. Jim needed them here. But it had been more than two weeks and that’s a lot of together time. We called Jane to make sure it would be alright for them to leave and then come back after my next treatment, and she gave us instructions and approval. Mom and Dad have another COVID test scheduled next week and will quarantine before they drive straight out again. The challenge is recognizing that it’s not just COVID we have to be concerned about; it’s anything contagious. Heck, I can’t even pick things up off the floor right now. I need to be in a bubble. If Jim could, he’d put me in a bubble.
My hair loss has begun. I have no more armpit hair and it’s starting to come out in other places. I still have eyebrows and eyelashes, but I’ve got bare patches on my scalp.
Crying keeps happening. It’s random. A friend posted about an interaction at Trader Joe’s and I thought “I miss cashiers” and I started to well up. Mom and Dad gave us a freezer for Christmas and I tear up thinking of the things I can make now because I’ll have room. Seriously. I’m choked up right now.
OVER A FREEZER.
I had another side effect last night. My humerus hurt. I was not amused. Ba dum bum. It hurt where I’d gotten the Neulasta injection. That drug boosts my white blood cell production, which happens in the bone marrow, so my bones hurt. So did my skin. Jim touched my back and it was tender.
I drank more water.
For the next ten days I should be in pretty good shape. Monday is my check-up. My white blood cell count will probably be low again, so I’ll rest and stay in my bubble and let it build back up until my next chemo treatment on the 21st. Mom and Dad will return, as long as their tests are negative and they don’t have the sniffles, on the 22nd. After this last treatment, I’m hopeful that I’ll rebound easier than predicted. I was supposed to be miserable after the second and here I was eating wings, so I’m just going to put it out in the universe that I will be able to eat that Christmas lamb, darnit.
I’ve got lots to look forward to and do in the next week and a half. I’ll finish writing Living Landmarks of Chicago (so much fun!) and I should be getting my copies of Midwest Road Trip Adventures from the publisher. I’ve got gifts I want to make and a writing workshop to plan. Oh, I didn’t mention that, did I? My medical team told me I’ll be able to lead a writing workshop in Gulf Shores, Alabama, in early March. By then I can even miss a week of chemo if I need to. That’s all dependent on the whole COVID situation, but my treatments won’t hold me back. HALLA-FREAKING-LUJAH.
Yep. All over the place.
I’ve got more. Friends who will be undergoing chemo have begun asking me for advice, so I’m going to write up an easier-to-read list of what’s worked for me. There are tons of resources, but this is an individual experience. Maybe what I’ve learned can give someone an idea that can make their time easier.
Time to go. That water won’t drink itself.