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Yes, We Have Too Many Bananas (number-crunching kvetch edition)

The good news is that, on balance, my side effects following my second chemo infusion have been less severe and more short-lived than they had been following my first infusion. Part of the difference is likely due to the fact that my first infusion had also occurred two days after surgery to install my chemo port.

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Chemo Warriors

The first time I walked into the chemo bay on May 8 -- not just to the reception area, but to the lounges themselves to take a seat, I was more than a little nervous. My chemo port was still fresh (and still sore) from having been surgically implanted two days before. I had read up on what to bring in my "chemo bag" here and here, and I had come loaded for bear.

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Make It Rain

Monday was my day to get groceries in preparation for chemo later this week. By the time I got to the store it was near closing time, due to some unforeseen delays.

First, I had slept in, which is a good thing.

Then, my scalp started feeling tender in the early afternoon. I gave it a gentle rub and watched strands of hair float down to my lap. A bit more rubbing and a small clump dislodged.

Aha!

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Countdown

Five days until I begin Chemo Cycle 2.

A mental alarm bell went off this past Thursday. First, it was time to call and reorder my anti-nausea meds, which are due to be delivered before my next infusion.

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Attitude

A friend called me on Sunday to see how I was doing.  He knows someone who is also on chemo and who has been having a much tougher time of it.

I brought him up to speed.

Then I told him that I look at all this as an adventure.  It's not one that I would have chosen, but it's an adventure nonetheless. 

He got that.

In an earlier phone conversation prior to starting chemo, I had said, "This is going to sound weird, but I'm actually having some fun with this."

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Mid-May 2014: Chemo Side Effects

Somnolescence (copied from blog entry dated May 12, 2014)

We've had a very quiet weekend.

In addition to overnight sleep, I clocked two 4-hour naps on Saturday and two 2-hour naps on Sunday, plus another 90 minutes of bed time due to some digestive challenges. I'll just say I'm very thankful that I had picked up organic ginger tea prior to chemo, and that M had reminded me of it.

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Early May 2014: Chemo Begins

Chemo, Day One (copied from blog entry dated May 8, 2014)

I had my first chemo infusion earlier today. Was able to drive home, though M was prepared to drive if I couldn't. I became slightly headachey during the infusion and for a couple of hours thereafter, but that faded without added meds. Stomach feels a little off, but no real nausea (lots of burping). Bowels are in will-they-or-won't-they mode. (Says M, who has MS, "Welcome to the club.") Drank 12 cups of water yesterday and have surpassed that today. My water bottle is my constant companion.

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Early May 2014: Chemo Prep and Getting My Port

T Minus 4 Days to Chemo (copied from blog entry dated May 4, 2014)

Did a bit of yard work -- perhaps the last yard work I'll do for a while (whatever that will mean).

My list of phone calls to make for tomorrow includes:

1. The pharmacy for the anti-nausea meds, to get their tracking number and reconfirm that the meds will be sent to the cancer center directly rather than to my home, since I am having surgery on the day of delivery.

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Early May 2014: More Prep for Chemo

The Fine Art of Negotiation (copied from blog entry dated May 3, 2014)

Also posted on Facebook:

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April and May 2014: Preparation for Chemo

Preparations (copied from blog entry dated April 29, 2014)

I still don't know exactly when chemo will start. I only know that it will, and likely soon.

I had a MUGA scan on Monday and will likely get the results when I see the oncologist on Thursday. We expect my heart to be fine. (Then again, the surgeon and I had expected my recurrence score to be low rather than intermediate, which is why I'm getting chemo. You never know.)

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