Updates and Things

Saturday, May 30, 2015

I have officially completed one whole round of chemo! Or at least what I am considering one round. I have done everything once, minus surgery. I now know what I can expect (which is good and bad).  Monday starts week 6, which puts me halfway to surgery. After this next complete round, they will rescan me and then do surgery! Progress forward is a good thing!

My second hospital stay was pretty uneventful. Well, I take that back. Monday was long and frustrating for a multitude of reasons. They cannot do the chemo till my PH levels are at a certain number and mine were too low when we got there which delayed things. Thankfully they have sodium bicarb pills that my doctor is going to make sure I start taking a few days before my next round of methotrexate which should help that. They also had to access my port twice because the first nurse clearly did not know what she was doing, so that was a painful inconvenience, but we survived. The hospital doctor took pity on me (we later learned he has a daughter my age so he felt for me being stuck in the hospital) and ordered a stat blood test Wednesday morning to check my methotrexate levels. They shouldn't have been checked again till Wednesday night, but bless this man, my levels came back okay for me to leave Wednesday afternoon! I still don't love being in the hospital. I have made friends with a lot of the nurses though, so that helps. I am still happy I don't have to go back till the end of the month!

Two of my cousins and aunt were in town this past week to keep me company. I know that 12 hour drive sucks, so it meant a lot to me to have them here. It made the time pass in the hospital MUCH quicker! I am trying to figure out a way to get them to A) move in or B) come every time I am in the hospital! The last two years or so have been rough for us, but I am thankful we can still laugh and joke as usual. We are already planning a beach trip for next summer, and I am counting down the days!

This second round of methotrexate has hit me a bit harder, I think. I am EXHAUSTED. Like so tired. I took two naps on Thursday and still went to bed at 11 and slept till 12:30 the next afternoon (not straight through). Then I still napped yesterday. Mind you, I am not even doing anything particularly strenuous. I also have mouth sores. I have something they call magic mouthwash, which works, but unfortunately for only 20 minutes at a time. I knew these were a possibility, but I had managed to avoid them until now. I have also been experiencing some pain in my leg. We were told that as the tumor (prayerfully!) breaks down, it can cause pain, so this is probably a good thing. It is just unfortunate as it can be very uncomfortable! I have also been slightly more nauseous than I was last week. Not in a throwup way, but in the sense that all food sounds disgusting. I am doing my best to try and eat, but it is hard! Two weeks ago, I was outside in the sun for a few hours and got burned. I didn't think anything of it, despite being told that chemo makes you more sensitive. It has turned into a pretty bad burn that is taking FOREVER to heal. It is not the end of the world, just another thing on top of many other things. Hopefully it heals up soon. 

I am just slowly learning throughout this process that I am not on my time table. This is very hard for me to adjust to. I am a person that plans and is always going and doing. I would make up errands for myself if I had a day of nothing. I hate laying around and watching TV. This past week especially, I have realized that I have to listen to my body. If I need to sleep, I need to sleep. I want to go and do so much, but I just physically can't right now. I am learning to accept that. 

It is a delicate balance though. I don't want to get in this mindset of "I can't". I don't know if I should be pushing myself more or if it is okay for me to backoff. I feel like when the chemo isn't making me sick, I should be going and doing or I am wasting my time. I haven't figured out what the correct answer is, but I am hoping I will. 

It is still hard for me to realize that this is how I am spending my summer. I see all the pictures on Facebook of people traveling and hanging out at the pool, and I am not going to lie, it it hard to see sometimes. I should be doing those things. I used to get to do those things. I just want to tell them all to appreciate it. I struggled with this a lot these last couple days, actually. I think being stuck in the hospital and seeing it made it worse. Why am I stuck in a hospital?? I should be out enjoying my summer! I know it is temporary (and luckily with teaching I have many summers in my future), but it still sucks. I had to cancel babysitting this morning (which I HATE doing) because I was throwing up and couldn't go shopping with my friends because I have 0 energy. It is extremely frustrating to me. I just want to feel like myself and get back to my life.

So, my chemo starts over on Monday. I go and get the mean stuff Monday and Tuesday. It sucks, but at least I get to come home to my own bed after it! I cannot say I am looking forward to the rest of the week. At all. We are armed with some new prescriptions and some experience this time at least. I have started taking anti-nausea stuff today in hopes of helping to lessen it. My doctor said sometimes this week can be tougher since it is three straight weeks of chemo. Since the methotrexate didn't seem to make me too nauseous, we are assuming he meant exhaustion wise. I am fine with sleeping though, as it makes the time go faster and I am not nauseous when I sleep! This time I know that the sick feeling will end and I will get a few good days! I think knowing that will help. 

I don't know if I ever formally posted what ended up happening with school. I was able to finish my biology class since it was online, so that was good. One of my professors gave me the grade I had earned at that point, which was awesome. I had two incompletes, which just gives me a year to finish the course. I should finish one when I returned to school in the spring (prayerfully!) and then I am hoping to finish the other one by the end of the summer. I had to withdraw from math, so I have to retake it, which stinks. I am taking french online in June through USC Upstate, which I was going to do anyway. Then in the fall, I am taking one course online through USC. This delays my graduation by a semester, simply because of the way the professional program works. I am kind of nervous about balancing school with how sick the chemo makes me feel, but I think it may be a good distraction to have. If it gets to be too much, it happens, but I feel like I can handle it!

On a bright side, my passport came in!! It is just a reminder that while this summer is leaving a lot to be desired, next summer I will be eating and shopping my way through Europe. I am not typically one to wish time by, but it cannot come soon enough! 

That's it from here I think! A pretty lame post, but I figured I would post an update of sorts before I take to my bed (so thankful it will be my OWN bed!) for the week. I am hoping I can perk up enough to go to a store tomorrow, but we will see. One minute at a time is what I am learning! 


Being Brave

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Lately, I have been struggling with the word brave. I have heard many times over the last few months how brave I am or how strong I am or how people admire how I am handling this unfortunate siutation. While I appreciate the compliments, I am not sure I agree.

They did not give me a new set of powers when they told me I had cancer. No one was like "you have cancer and here are these characteristics you will need to get through it". There's no super suit or magic spell or anything I have taken to become any different. I guarantee that anyone thrown into my position would be doing the exact same thing I am. I did not become a new, more brave person overnight. I don't think I am any braver than I used to be at all.

Sure, getting blood drawn no longer seems like such a big deal. Getting a cavity filled at the dentist with those horrible mouth numbing shots (that I used to think were the worst thing ever!)? Didn't even flinch. They need to insert an IV or access my port? Go right ahead. Anything that doesn't give me horrible nausea and weird mouth pain sounds like a walk in the park. I guess I have become "braver" in that sense. But I don't feel any different than I did before.

I think that everyone is brave. I don't think it takes terrible things to make people brave. I think getting up each day and living is brave. Think about it, no one knows what the day holds. You simply go through the day as you think you should, but at any moment something massive could change. I don't say that to scare anyone, but it is true. Everyday we get up and live. That is brave. Facing a new day whether you have cancer or just a scary math test is brave. Life takes bravery. I can almost guarantee that if anyone of you reading found yourself in a situation like mine (and I pray you don't), you would see I am not handling this like some kind of pro. I am simply handling it because I don't have the choice not to.

I have bad moments. Lots of them actually. There are some days where I literally have to convince myself to get out of bed. I cry. I get angry. Like really, really angry. I cannot tell you how much I don't want to do this. I have never not wanted to do something as much as I don't want to go back to the hospital tomorrow. I don't want to spend 8 hours next Monday and Tuesday getting chemo. I really don't want to spend the entirety of next week in my bed throwing up. I want my hair to come back. I don't want this stupid port in my chest. I don't want to have leg surgery. I am so angry that I did not get a choice in any of this.

The popular saying is that you get a choice when in how you handle unfortunate situations. You can choose to keep going or choose to curl up in a ball and stop. I never felt like I had a choice to make. I am not saying this to say I am any better than anyone else, I think most people who have found themselves in really crappy situations would say the same thing. In fact, one of my best friends who has been dealt a lot of her own very crappy cards agreed with me. There was never a moment where I was like okay I am choosing not to spend everyday in my bed. I don't know why, but I just never had a moment like that. I kind of just figured that life had to go on in someway. It is different, but it still had to go on. Maybe some people do. I honestly wasn't really given a choice to be brave. I was forced into this situation and I did not like the other options, so here I am.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that while yes I received very, very crappy news, it was not the worst news ever. In fact, it is so far from it. I have great doctors, an otherwise healthy body, lots of support, and options. Many people do not have these things. I think the reason people are able to be happy when it looks like they have reason not to be is because you start to cling to the things that you do have. I have so much more than I do not have. There is still so much good in my life that it would be silly for me to spend the majority of my time focusing on the bad (plus cancer doesn't deserve that much attention!). It is like your shift automatically changes to focus on all the stuff that isn't the bad stuff (or at least mine did). Not to say you have to go through a crappy situation to gain appreciation, but I really do think stuff like this opens your eyes to appreciate all the good things in life just a little bit more.

I guess my point is that we are all brave. Cancer does not make me any more brave than any of you. I wish I could tell you there was some secret into how I am handling all of this, but there isn't. I am simply doing what it takes to get through each day and get to the end of this damn "journey". If that makes me brave, than I guess I'll accept it, but it isn't anything anyone else couldn't do. I am not saying that all bravery is equal by any means. I think there are times when brave takes on a whole new meaning, but then again, maybe those people don't feel anymore brave than the average person either.

Here's the part where I would encourage you all to go out and be brave! Do something that scares you! Whatever all that BS is. I am not going to do that. Like I said above, I think waking up and facing each day is brave. If you are having a really awful day, but you still managed to get out of bed, even if it was just to get food, then you are brave! If you started a new internship, you are brave too! Maybe you had a completely average day, but still you got out of bed! I think if we all just remember that everyone is facing their own battles the world would be a better place. No one has a "perfect" life. I know that is hard to see (especially with social media), but it is the truth. Everyone has their own stuff. Even the people you pass in the grocery store or see at a stoplight. I once heard a quote that said something along the lines of "if everyone threw their problems in a pile, you'd probably still pick yours". To many, my problem may seem like the worst thing ever. I get that. To me though, I can think of a million things that would be worse.

So be nice. Be appreciative. And even though you are already doing it, be brave.
Day 4: To Live For The Future by ~thenorthernlights14 on deviantART

We live among everyday heroes. Men and women who have seen real combat, horrific tragedy and the battle often comes home with them.

Home is Where There are No 4am Labs or Vitals

Thursday, May 21, 2015

I am home from the hospital!!! 

I was admitted Monday morning and had the chemo that afternoon. I became very nauseous Monday night so they ended up giving me an Ativan through my port and knocked me out. We aren't sure if it was the chemo that made me nauseous or just a combination of things (not eating, being in a hospital). I did not experience any nausea the rest of my stay! Honestly, I did not even experience any other side effects at all. I was tired and my appetite was (and remains) not what it usually is, but that is SO mild compared to the stuff I get outpatient! 

Despite feeling good, I cannot say I love being in the hospital. I have never been in the hospital for any reason before this, so it was all new. I do have to say, I LOVED my nurses. Every single one was fantastic and super nice. I have a new appreciation for nurses. The hours are LONG and they are on their feet, yet they still manage to smile and be helpful. I think next time I may bring cupcakes or something to hand out to the nurses that take care of me. 

The food left a lot to be desired. Seriously y'all it was nasty. I was going to take pictures of it for laughs, but half the time I couldn't even look at it without getting nauseous. Luckily, the hospital has some more edible options and my parents were able to bring me food from out. I don't know what I would have done if that had not been an option!

I am hooked up 24/7 in the hospital. That part got extremely annoying. Every time I had to pee (which is a lot when you are on a constant IV of fluids), I had to drag this huge IV pole with me. I had tubes connected to my port which made it hard to sleep comfortably. Not that much sleep happens anyway in a hospital. I think I slept in increments of like 2 or 3 hours every night I was there. They had to give me medicine, do vitals, etc and it was SO annoying. Plus those IV things beep every time an air bubble gets stuck or something, which requires calling the nurse and a whole process. Needless to say, I am super excited to be able to sleep through the night and be unplugged today! 

I had a lot of activities, but I did not really do any of them. I don't know why. I was SO INCREDIBLY THANKFUL for everyone who came to visit me!!!! So many of my friends made the drive to the hospital (which is out of the way), and some of them came after long days at work. It made the time pass so quick and made me feel like myself. I seriously will never be able to thank them enough for coming! I know hospitals are not fun places to be, but it seriously meant so much that people came to see me. 

So I am home and I feel good! I came home, ate some mac'n cheese, and crashed on the couch for like three hours. I will go back inpatient Monday for the same thing. Hopefully it goes just as well and I can get out of there Wednesday! The doctor came in yesterday around 7 and said my levels were good to leave yesterday, but they didn't know I did not have the lucavoren prescription. I needed that to go home, so I was stuck there until this morning for the simple reason of getting the prescription. I am not sure if the hospital weeks follow a pattern, but I am hoping they do! 

I am not gonna lie, it was hard to be in the hospital, on the oncology floor no less. When did that happen???????? I just don't get how I got there. It was hard seeing everyone post things on social media (which is a blessing and a curse) about traveling and doing fun things, while I am stuck in the hospital. I know it is temporary, but nonetheless, it sucks. I cannot say I am looking forward to being back there. I was trying to decide if it is better to be home but sick or stuck in the hospital but feeling good. Yesterday, I think my answer was home but sick! I was really not happy to be stuck there. My heart goes out to all the people who are in the hospital for weeks on end. It probably wouldn't be so bad if people were constantly waking me up! Also the first room I was in did not have an exterior window. We had to move rooms because the AC broke and the new room had a window. It made a world of difference in my attitude! I think it should be a requirement for hospital rooms to have windows that look outside. Anyway, I am going to embrace my 4 days of freedom and hopefully finally go see Pitch Perfect 2! 

Thanks for all the love, prayers, thoughts, etc. They are much appreciated and I feel them! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Bit of a Hairy Situation

Thursday, May 14, 2015

I knew it was going to happen, but that doesn't make it any better. My hair started coming out this past Sunday. A lot.

Well, I noticed it Saturday, but it wasn't unmanageable or anything. I still styled it and went out as usual. By Sunday though, it was coming out a lot. I left it alone and laid around the majority of the day. Sunday night I needed to wash it and that is when it really went downhill. It basically dried in one big clump. Monday morning came and it was completely unmanageable. I had an appointment with my hair lady on Friday anyway, but I had my mom text her ASAP because I could not wait. Luckily, she was able to fit me in that afternoon. She cut it shorter than it has ever been (just below my chin). It still was coming out, but at least now it wasn't getting tangled.

Each day since then has gotten progressively worse. I still have length, but you can totally tell at the top of my head that hair is falling out. I don't think whatever is left will last much longer. I have put all my hair products away for now. I am simply rinsing it and putting in leave in stuff. There is not much point in doing anything else. Once it starts coming out, it seriously comes out.

I would be lying if I said this has been easy. I am pretty sure I have cried just about everyday since Sunday. Not just tiny little tears, but like full on long sob sessions.  I cried in the chair before getting my hair cut. It sucks for so many reasons. Before I go any further, I want to say I know it is just hair. I get that. In the scheme of things, this is nothing. It will come back. Knowing these things, does not make this any easier. It is another loss in this process that I am trying to figure out how to deal with.

I feel like I don't recognize myself. Even when my hair was just short but still mostly there. I am not a short hair person. I have been trying to grow my hair long for the last few years. I look in the mirror and see the port and the short hair and I just get sad. That is not me. I don't know who this person is or how to be her. Quite frankly, I don't want to figure out how to be her. I don't want to be this person. I don't want to look sick. I don't want the stares and the pity I am sure come with having no hair. Nothing screams "you have cancer" more than a bald head.

I know that nothing on the inside is changing. Just because I won't have hair doesn't make me a different person. I think that is easier for other people to see than me. Not that looks are everything, but I feel like I need my hair to be pretty or at least be myself. What 20 year old female (or any female or person really) wants to be bald?! I feel like I don't see myself when I look into the mirror. I know I will adjust to it. Right now though, it takes a lot to get out of bed in the morning.

I feel like there are so many little losses (temporarily, but it is still a loss) that I didn't even think about. I typically do my whole shower routine around my hair washing. Since I don't have to do that anymore, I lost that routine. I love finding new products to try on my hair. I had actually just purchased some recently that I barely got to use. I take good care of my hair and to see what it looks like now is just disheartening.

I also don't know how to go to normal things. It is a weird feeling, so I am not sure I can describe it. I kind of feel like I don't know how to go out into the world as this new person. I don't know how to get in my car and go do errands as a bald (or mostly bald) person.  I know it didn't actually change anything, but for me it feels like it did. I feel good so looking in the mirror is just a reminder that things aren't normal and that I am actually sick. I feel like home is my little bubble where I feel safe. I know that is not good and I need to get out (and I will), but I have to figure out how to reenter the world.

It has been a rough few days. No one can prepare you to see clumps of your hair coming out. Besides just being horrifying to see, it is itchy and uncomfortable. I know a lot of people may just shave their head or whatever, but I don't think I can do that. The shorter length is manageable so that is what I am  doing right now. It is not even coming out evenly though, so one side is visibly thinner than the other side.

I am so thankful for my awesome hair lady. I have been going to her for years so she knows my hair and understands. She knows how hard this is for me and told me she is on standby for whatever I need.

I did buy a wig, so I have that on hand. It is actually similar to the length of my hair currently. I thought I would go long, but the long ones just felt too fake. The color is super similar to mine and has some highlights, which I had been wanting to get anyway. I am glad to have it. I know wigs are not the most comfortable thing, but I am glad to have it should I ever want to wear it.

So it has been a rough few days emotionally. I know this will pass and I will get used to it, but I can't help the fact that this just sucks. I want my life back, I want my hair back. I don't want to be doing any of this. It is just sad. It doesn't bother me every minute of everyday, but it is something that is hard to ignore. I know it is going to get a little worse before it gets better too. It just sucks. Cancer and chemo are bad enough, why does your hair have to fall out?

I hope this post wasn't too big of a downer. I just want to be honest when sharing my feelings, and I honestly having nothing good to say about this hair situation. It is so much harder than I expected it to be.

On the update front, I am about to head to my doctor's appointment. I don't think they are doing anything besides giving me my hospital orders. I will be in the hospital Monday-either Wednesday or Thursday the next two weeks for chemo. I cannot say I am looking forward to that! I have also developed a pretty bad cough this week that is making my throat hurt. I am not sure if it is allergies or from chemo, but I am hoping they can give me something today to help with that.

Thanks for all the continued love and support. This hair thing is just another thing that I will adjust to and then it will be over. I know it is bad to wish time away, but I can't help but be happy for each day that passes as it gets me closer to being done with this!

I hope you all have a great weekend!

New feature!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

I posted below earlier today, but I just wanted to share a new thing I added! I am not a person who is good at things to do with computers and technology really, but I figured out how to add a "follow by e-mail feature". I have been worried about clogging up Facebook whenever I post a new blog (kinda ironic considering this is my second post today haha), so this is another way for you to follow! Or if you aren't on Facebook it is good for you too! If you scroll down, on the right side, under my blog archive, there is a now a thing that says "follow by e-mail". If you enter your e-mail, you will (supposedly! I don't know exactly how it works) get e-mails whenever I write a new post. I don't know if they send other e-mails (I doubt it). I don't even think I get notified who is getting e-mails. No pressure at all, but I figured it would be a handy feature to have!

Thanks for reading and for all the continued support and love!

Happy Things

I have had a great few days! I am feeling good, so I am going and doing.

Wednesday my three best friends came over. It was the first time I had seen them since chemo started, and it was so good to see them! I am so thankful they are all home for the summer because it really makes a world of difference. I was not 100% myself, but we laid around and talked, which is not much different from what we usually do.

Thursday, I left the house for the first time in almost two weeks! My best friends and I went to lunch and then to a pottery painting place. It was a relief to leave the house! My appetite has been lacking and my taste buds were still off, so I didn't eat much lunch (despite it being one of my favorite places), but it felt good to be doing a normal thing. I hadn't been to paint pottery in years, but it was a nice and relaxing first out of the house activity. I cannot say much for my artistic skills, but some things never change!

Yesterday (Friday) was a big day for me, at this point in my life anyway. It started with my first shower! I cannot tell you how good that felt! I have never been a bath person, but that has been my only choice recently because I have been too weak to stand up. I had a frozen pizza for lunch, which has been one of my cravings. I haven't had one in years, so it is completely random, but hey I am going for it. I then drove my car for the first time! That was weird. I do not know if I have ever gone that long without driving, but it took me a little bit to readjust. The highlight of yesterday was being reunited with my Target! I am happy to report that not much had changed, but I as able to wander and purchase and it was beautiful. I also went to Kohls, where I was massively blessed by the retail gods. My favorite clothing line, LC by Lauren Conrad, was 70-80% off! That has never happened (that I've seen), so it was a good day! I probably spent too much, but I needed to refresh my summer wardrobe and felt like I could justify deserving a few new pieces!

Last night, I survived my first trip to the mall. If you don't know, I am a HUGE shopper, so extensive mall trips are kind of my favorite thing. I tired out a little bit quicker than usual, and had to sit down at some points, but I was successful! I am not even sure if I was more tired than usual, or if it was because we were there for 4 1/2 hours and all I had eaten was a frozen pizza. We finished at the mall, then went to one of our favorite Italian restaurants. Again, my appetite is not what it usually is, but it was so good to get to eat! It was quite an eventful and hilarious dinner. I am so so so thankful for my friends! After dinner, we had a sleepover. It felt like normal and it was fantastic. Cancer came up, but it did not takeover. Cancer is taking a lot from me, but I won't let it take what it cannot have.

Needless to say, yesterday I definitely did my part to contribute to the economy. I have also realized how thankful I am to have such great friends. I always knew it, but they have really come through. I know sometimes people run when things get hard, but the opposite has been happening. I wasn't really worried it would happen, but I did not want to become the "sick" friend. My friends have not treated me any differently, while still making sure I am okay and holding up. They haven't not invited me anywhere because I may get too tired. As a matter of fact, they are the ones encouraging me most to go out! It is good to know that while lots of things are changing (temporarily), our friendship isn't. I know we have a long way to go, but if they haven't run yet, I think we are safe :). We have gone and done things we had only previously talked of doing. It sounds cheesy, but this may be bringing us closer. I wish that this wasn't what was doing it, but what can you do? We have all decided that this is the summer that bottoms us out and then things will only go up from here!

Today I am exhausted, so I plan on just taking it easy. Earlier, my mom and I and one of my best friends and her mom went to a candle making thing at a store downtown. It was different and fun! My aunt is coming to visit tomorrow for the week so that will be fun. Things are good!

There isn't much to update on honestly! I am going out and doing normal things. My hair is hanging on, but is coming out a little more than usual. No one else can tell, but I can when I brush. I have been leaving it alone in hopes of keeping it around a bit longer! I am going to look at wigs this week, so that's a thing. Like I mentioned above, my appetite is lacking. If I eat one meal, I feel full the rest of the day. My tastebuds seem to have mostly returned so that is good! Not much sounds appetizing, but I am trying to eat anyway. Brushing my teeth makes me gag, but using a smaller toothbrush has helped. My lips are constantly super chapped and dry. I have those little sore spots you get in the corners of your mouth, which is super painful. I don't know if it is the chemo or simply not eating/drinking enough, but I wish they would go away! My gums are also super sore, but I bought some stuff that is supposed to help with that. It makes brushing painful! All these are little things though, and I will take them over being nauseous! I can deal with extra chapstick and a smaller toothbrush if it means I am feeling good!

To end, A family friend shared this article with me, then I saw it on several websites. These cards are hilarious and perfect! She has an online store that is filled with things of similar humor. If you are friends with my on Facebook, you probably already saw, but I had to share here too!

I hope everyone has a great rest of their weekend! Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there!

So Chemo

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Funny how I pre-apologized for over blogging, only to go a very long stretch without it! Well, I am going to go ahead and apologize for the length of this post! I have emerged from my chemo (coma? state? funk? whatever you want to call it) with lots to say.

First off, the question everyone has been asking me, how do you feel? Are you feeling better? Wait, I guess that's two questions. My answer? I guess. It honestly changes so fast it is hard for me to say. Do I feel better than Monday-Wednesday of last week? Yes! Am I 100% myself now? No. Monday-Wednesday last week I was pretty drugged and tired. I would say Thursday was the absolute worst day, but it is also the day I felt myself remerge a bit. The rest of the days have good moments and bad, luckily the good ones are starting to become longer. It has no pattern or anything to it. I could literally send a text saying I'm fine and then one second later be totally sick and clutching my new bff (sorry y'all), the silver bedside bowl.

This chemo stuff is no joke. Dr. B reminded me again yesterday that no one back in that infusion room is getting anything worse than the two drugs I am getting. They really load you up when you are young because you can handle it (but can I really is my question). It sucks. Bad. Why it is 2015 and this is the best we can do I have no idea. Don't get me wrong, I am extremely thankful for it. It is gonna fix me, but that does not mean the side effects don't suck. A lot. I am not sure I can emphasize that enough.

Sure there are lots of great medicines (and many of them do work) to help with the side effects. But you know what is really hard to do when your throat hurts and feels like it is covered in layers of thick stuff (sorry for the details but they are reality)? Swallow pills. My taste is all messed up. Everything tastes the same, but occasionally I can taste some salt. I still can't keep much down. I am encouraged to eat when I feel good, so I am, but it is really hard knowing that it probably won't stay down. I'm really hoping this changes soon, because I think as soon as I can get some food in me I will really start to feel better.

Sleep is good. And it is happening a lot. Apparently some people don't sleep? Man, I am not having that problem at all! I am usually a night owl. I will stay up till 4am for no reason at all. Lately, I have been going to sleep at like 8. I think one night I made it to 11 and was about to throw a party. I also seem to have the sleeping schedule of an infant some days because I require several naps throughout the day. I know a lot of it is the nausea meds make you drowsy, but this is probably the best my sleeping schedule has been in years!

So it has been a hard week and a half to say the least. I never really expected to go from being so on my own to being so dependent on my parents again. I am super (super!) thankful they are there, but it is still just something I have to adjust to. There were times over this past week where I couldn't even make it to the bathroom (that is connected to my room so literally 5 steps away from my bed) without getting lightheaded and needing to lie down. That's a long way to come from someone who was living in her own apartment an hour and a half away just a few months ago. And it is hard. And it sucks. A lot. I really don't like that word, but there really isn't any other word that sums up this situation.

I feel like now that I've done the first one I'm ready for the last one. It is kind of like the first day of school. You go, you kind of feel like you wanted to be back, but after that first day you are ready for summer. That's how I feel. Plus I think now that I see how it is going to go, I can taste how much sweeter the end of this will be. I want that day SO badly. I still have times, even while laying in bed completely nauseous, that I cannot believe this is actually happening.

Have you ever had those dreams you feel so happy to wake up from? I used to have dreams about something bad happening or something and being so relieved to wake up. Well, now I can't get that. I can't wake up from this. I want to so badly. Half of my heart still wants my doctor to walk in the room and tell me it was all a mistake. I am not sure if that part will ever get any easier.

This specific date is one I had marked in my calendar, probably all the way back in August. May 5. It was the day of my last final and I was going to come home for the summer. I cannot express enough how sad I am that it is not happening like that. I LOVE summer. I LOVE coming home for the summer. It just isn't fair. I am so angry. I want my normal carefree summer. I know the summers I am used to are limited anyway because we are all getting older and getting jobs, so why did I have to lose out on this one? I know this summer won't be a total wash, but it won't be the summer I expected to have. It just sucks.

I had my labs done yesterday and my counts came back great. The doctor was very happy with them. He said some of them are even higher than they usually expect. I am at no greater risk for infection and am free to go and do as I feel able. Hopefully I feel able soon! I will get my next treatment in the hospital the week of the 18. Probably 3 or 4 days in patient, then home three or four days then repeat the next week. He called the hospital chemo the easy stuff so my fingers are crossed for whatever that means!

Thanks again for all the love, cards, messages, basically everything. Now that I feel better, I am seriously going to get going on my list of thank you notes!

No real exciting plans for the rest of the week. I am hopefully going to start feeling better and spend time with my friends who are home for the summer!! My goal for the end of the week is to leave the house. I haven't been to a store in over a week. That is probably a new personal record, and not a good one! I have not looked at stocks or the economy, but I would like to apologize for any harm my being under the weather has done. The last thing this country needs is another recession, and I promise from now on to keep up my part! This chemo stuff did a number on me, but I hope it is doing even worse things to those crappy cancer cells!

All the love to all of you!

P.S. It wouldn't be like me if I didn't give a big shout out to the new Royal Princess! I love all things royal family and have celebrated every event accordingly! I am pretty sure as soon as Silver Bedside Bowl is done being my bff, Kate Middleton will take its place. I must get on the celebration for Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. I am SO excited it is a girl and think her name is perfect!!! Her and George are gonna be TOO cute!