Sixteen Candles

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I have had the song, Sixteen Candles Chemos, running through my head all week. My 16th, and final, round of chemo is today! When I get home there should be cake and champagne!  Of course I won’t feel like partaking until sometime this weekend, but still.. it should be there. Naturally the only #16 candle I can find is pink (and very big.. sorry) Image

On the home and health front, these last few rounds have kicked my ass. Not enough to require any kind of medical intervention in between visits, just really exhausted. I feel like I am moving through thick mud most of the time.  And my “achy joints” have morphed into some pretty severe bone pain at times. I have one finger on one hand that keeps blistering and peeling.  It was the whole hand last week, steroid cream cleared up 4 digits, but the index finger is being difficult. It is also twice as big as it’s counterpart at the moment and on my surgical side. I’m hoping it’s not a sign of lymphadema, though I only had one lymph node removed.  We’ll see.

On the blog front, I haven’t had a whole lot to say, but I’ve been reading the blogs I follow daily. I see a lot of writing “assignments” or challenges and lots of awards.  I think it would be fun to participate and then I have nothing to say.  Which is not like me at all. I’ll keep reading, though, and maybe inspiration will come.

Today I find out what comes next. I know I will be spending the better part of my summer vacationing in Chernobyl. Other than that, not sure when I see my surgeon to have the port removed or when I start Tamoxifen, what scans I have when, etc. etc.  I have been kind of coasting along during chemo and as long as I am “doing something” I feel okay with this whole cancer business.  Ending chemo feels like a milestone, but for some reason it’s also making me feel a little uneasy.   My genetics appointment is coming up soon. I have very mixed feelings about that. Obviously, it’s important. On the other hand, I’m not ready to hear my whole treatment plan should have been different based on the results or my 20 something daughters have to start making tough decisions about their own future health.   But, for them, my sister and cousins I will go.

While googling 16 Candles I saw this funny. For you Molly Ringwald fans

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My latest cancessories

 

So apparently the numbness I am experiencing is concerning, even though it’s not the neuropathy we are warned about with Taxol and it’s cousins where the fingertips and bottom of the feet are numb.   My oncologist said it was carpal tunnel but it is getting worse almost daily. I wake up to two completely numb hands and have to shake and flex them to get the blood circulating. I hadn’t put two and two together until she asked about my feet but I have noticed one or both will “fall asleep” when I’m watching television in the evening.  I have had carpal tunnel in the past when I typed for 8-10 hours a day and it was painful. This is not.   I was told I may not be able to complete the 12 rounds. I will wear these splints at night to prevent my nerves from compressing in the wrist causing numbness. If I still have it, then it’s the Taxol.  Since I’ve had the complaint from week one and it’s been progressively getting worse she wants to stop so I don’t have permanent damage. I don’t want to stop. I have cancer. I was told I needed 16 rounds of chemo and I want 16 rounds.  I know that sounds ridiculous, but I don’t want to be sitting in her office in 3 years and hear it’s back and we should have done more the first time.  On the other hand I was told from the beginning I was likely getting too much chemo, but since there is no way to predict if the cancer will come back, mine is hormone receptive and I am relatively young and there was micro-metastasis in the sentinel node, we would throw everything at it.

She brought up my genetics appointment again too.  It was moved back to June when I will be between chemo and radiation. I have mixed feelings about it.  I need to do it, especially for my daughters, but I don’t want to open that can of worms just yet. I’m tired of thinking about cancer. I don’t want to be told I should have had a mastectomy after all and I did all this for nothing.  I don’t want my 22 and 26 year old daughters to have to make decisions about their breasts and ovaries before they’ve had a family.

Otherwise, the appointment went well except for the unleashing of my paranoid obsessive disorder