A new year and a new milestone – it will be 12 weeks tomorrow since my first chemo treatment meaning that I’m halfway through this step in the crappy process that is beating breast cancer.
Since my last (and first) post about chemotherapy I have had two further treatments. I was anticipating that the side effects would get worse as the weeks go by, but it has been fairly smooth sailing. I am so grateful that my body is coping OK with all of this as there are so many other people out there who have a really rough time with chemo. There have been a few noticeable, but unexpected side effects though, including:
- A red face and chest on day 2 and 3 after chemo (presumably due to the Doxorubicin, which also makes your pee red)
- Cravings for very specific items (the kind of have-to-have-it-even-if-it’s-the-middle-of-the-night type cravings). Examples are, KFC wicked wings, apples, a Bacon & Egg McMuffin, caesar salad with bacon, and ham & cheese croissants (not all at the same time though)
- High levels of bloating, and associated gas (sorry family)
- Waking up at 3am and not being able to go to sleep. Tends to happen the night of a treatment and couple of nights after that
It’s important to remember that chemo is different for everyone and I don’t want to paint too light a picture of it, my intention is only to let you know what it has been like for me (with a little humour thrown in for good measure from time to time).
A lot else has been going on other than chemo mind you. After writing this post about an infamous breast cancer awareness campaign gone wrong (in my opinion, and several others as well), I got on the tele. I was scared shitless. I had a lot to say, and then as soon as the camera was on my brain turned to mush and I’m pretty sure I repeated the exact same point about 10 times, whilst forgetting all other points. Luckily they only aired something like 7 seconds of my interview. Still, there’s a first (and last!) time for everything. Thanks Cate for your part in making it happen.
We also had a lovely Christmas day at our place, with my sisters, my soon to be brother in law, Mum and Nana. Then we had the annual boxing day BBQ at our place with all of our friends. We also hosted a fabulous new year’s party at our place (talk about hogging all the major events). I had my 28th birthday on the 30th December too. It twas a lovely day. Firstly, my dear husband got me a dress I had my eye on from Annah S which I wore out when we went out for breakfast before he started work. I couldn’t decide between the french toast and waffles, so I got both. Then my sister and BFF took me out for lunch. In the evening a bunch of us went to see the Black Caps get completely humiliated by Pakistan in the 3rd 20/20 match. Despite the ass-kicking, it was a fun night and the weather was perfect for it.
Oh, and we bought a spa pool. HELLS YEAH! The spa is my compensation for having to deal with all this bullshit. Whilst it doesn’t completely make up for having to currently live with one lonely boob, it is pretty freakin’ fantastic, and does make it all a little bit better. It’s meant to be a 5 seater, but we managed to get 11 in it on new year’s eve.
That’s me in the back, the crazy looking person in the hat. Did I mention I got sufficiently hammered on new year’s eve? I must remember to go and apologise to our neighbours.
What made new year’s even more fabulous is that my sister-in-law and her husband came down to visit. It was so great to see them, and we had an awesome time while they were here. Only wish they could have stayed longer.
As is tradition, sister-in-law forces everyone to give her their new year’s resolutions (love you sis) and writes them down on a piece of paper (or a napkin), keeps it until the following year and then reads them back to you when you’re making your new ones. My resolution this year is to do the Otago Central Rail Trail at Easter time. It involves cycling 150km through idyllic little Central Otago towns, along the old railway line that was used in gold mining days. We’re going to do it over 4 days, with both sides of the family. That includes my mum, my sister and her soon to be husband, my parents-in-law, my sister-in-law and her husband, and my two brothers-in-law. 11 of us all up. It’s going to be a mission, but I can’t wait. It’s going to be a great reason to get off my fat arse and get out and do some exercise. Just don’t tell anyone that I plan on having a pie and a pint for lunch from the local pub at each stop along the way.