Today I had something called “Chemo Teaching.” Basically this means that one of the Nurse Practitioners on staff tells me all of the possible side effects of Chemotherapy, and then explains what is really likely to happen.
Nausea is likely, but I already have two prescriptions to help with that. Plus, I will receive anti-nausea meds ahead of the Chemo infusion. Fatigue is possible, as is anemia. My white blood cell count will be monitored very closely.
I’m likely to lose weight, but retain water and appear puffy. My hair will be gone within one to three weeks. Tonight I discussed this with the kid. He laughed when I said that I will be “bald,” but he thinks he will get used to it. He’s not quite on board with buzzing his head as a show of solidarity. And that’s OK. We cannot expect too much of a nine-year-old whose mom has Cancer and is going through Chemo. Both are scary words for him.
Between the time change and the anxiety of the diagnosis, I am only sleeping about six hours a night. Therefore, I am unreasonably excited about having my procedure tomorrow and being under anesthesia. A whole day of sleep is wildly appealing to me.
Speaking of tomorrow’s procedure … I am having something called a Port or Porto-Cath put in; it connects directly to my blood vessels. This is the site from which I will receive Chemo and have blood drawn. I will also have something called a Sentinel Node Biopsy. When I had my breast MRI, one of the lymph nodes lit up. The Sentinel Node Biopsy will help to determine how many — if any — nodes are involved.
In preparation for tomorrow, I was instructed to shower tonight and tomorrow morning with antibacterial soap. Tonight, in hopes of being able to blissfully unwind (yeah, right) I took a leisurely shower. I washed my hair and face, used the antibacterial soap, and shaved my legs and under-arms. As I completed this, I realized that I pay more attention to what my surgeon may or may not glean from my shaving or lack of shaving than to how my husband feels about it. Sadly, I want my surgeon to think I have it all together (Ha!), more so than my Hubs. Sorry, babe … maybe it just means I know that you won’t judge.
Now I will watch two more of my crushes: Shemar Moore and Matthew Grey Gubler. Criminal Minds is my fave show. Please oh please … could one of you show up in my dreams tonight?