You may be singing Carly Simon right now…I am sure it will be stuck in your head all day…but the first thing I thought about when writing this tonight was Rocky Horror Picture Show. Remember this moment?
Hasn’t Susan Sarandon held up well? Ok, this isn’t about aging actresses, although I might prefer that topic. This past 4 weeks of crazy has lead to, finally, a defined plan and schedule. And while I can pencil in the dates of my treatments, I still am losing sleep over the first treatment scheduled March 11. I toss and turn in anticipation of what, what?
My Doc has told us the treatments last 4-6 hours, one time every 21 days for 6-8 cycles. Got it. And she says the side effects should be minimal, and manageable. She sent me home with prescriptions for Prilosec, and anti nausea meds, and Bactrim to ward off infections….She predicts a day of fatigue around day 4-7, but some get it in 24 hours. Could get”backed up”. Could get hungry from Prednisone. Could have a little tummy upset that is calmed by crackers and carbs. I will have hair loss. I asked my Doc if I should expect to gain weight since I will be taking Prednisone – she said maybe, or not. She said some people soothe an upset tummy with crackers and bagels, and that could cause weight gain. Then she said, and I quote, “The last thing you want is to be bald AND gain 15 lbs. ” And you thought physicians don’t have a sense of humor.
What else should I anticipate?
Well, I predict standing in front of the mirror waiting for something to happen. Is that twinge a side effect of just a product of recently having surgery and turning 53? I will have 3 weeks between cycles to contemplate what is happening at my cellular level. What will that feel like? People have put the image of Pac Man in my head – a hungry cell destroying icon that chews up fast growing cells, identified by its DNA. Too bad the meds can’t tell the cancer from say, your hair follicles. Or mouth cells.
I do know what I can anticipate is the ongoing outpouring of love and support from my family and sweet friends and caring coworkers. I must admit that I haven’t had to acknowledge how big that circle of support really is in a loooong time. Like a safety net that you don’t always need to use, but so grateful that it is there.
And now a nod to Carly Simon…
Is making me late
Is keeping me waiting”……