Monday, February 16, 2009

At Last!

Has it really been two and a half months since I last wrote? Early December I rented a car and headed north to one of my favorite spots on earth, Mendocino. The drive there winds through vineyards, redwood forests, ending at last with the rugged California coast.....breath-taking!

Making my way alone, in the midst of chemo, was something I felt I needed to do. The trip was in no means simply for pleasure, I sat through two days of lectures on the science of raw food which I immensely enjoyed. It was so good to get my brain moving and it also got me back on a healthier food path. Unfortunately, I couldn't finish the class because my first Taxol treatment was due that week.

Am I ever glad I had that little breather before Taxol hit! I sailed through Adriamycin and Cytoxan, but Taxol? OMG! That drug wiped me out for the entire month of December. From menstrual-type cramps to eye pain to bone pain to incontinence to tachycardia - definitely the worst month of my life, so bad in fact, after consulting with my oncologist, I called it off.

After extensive research on the drug, I found that Taxol is most effective in treating metastatic disease, something I do NOT have. I decided to ask my oncologist if the PET scan could be repeated and she agreed that was a good idea. A few months earlier there was much controversy about several "worrisome" hot spots and what do you know, the second scan showed everything to be completely clear.

With my daughter by my side, I told the oncologist my decision to stop any further chemo and to proceed directly to radiation. I expected her to try to convince me otherwise, but instead she upheld my decision, gave me a big hug, told me to push forward and never look back.

I have been doing just that - ten of 33 radiation treatments are now complete. I should be back home in Michigan no later than the first of April....yippee!!

Everyday I feel better. The bouts of tachycardia lasted many weeks, as did the weakness, but now I am pretty much back to my normal self. And my hair has finally decided to begin growing! However, the color is darker than I ever remember it and my eyebrows are looking a bit bushy. Will I still be curly??

Sleep remains a major problem which is why I am writing tonight.....