end of chemo !!

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Madre
Madre Member Posts: 123
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
Well, today they removed my pump from chemo treatment #12 (FOLFOX). I see my Onc. on the the 30th to dicuss whats next. I am sure CT scans will be set up. I am stage 3b, they removed all the tumor in my colon with surgery, 3 out of 42 lymph nodes were positive. No bag, no radiation. I am not doing the happy dance 100% just yet, just want the scans to come back clear first, but I just had to share how weird it is not to be scheduled for another infusion. I go back to work 11/3 after being out since 4/16. Right now the family and I are enjoying some Halloween "ghosting", you fill goodie bags with candy and a picture of a Phantom Ghost and a poem about halloween and you ring the bell, run like hell and leave a bag of goodies at the door. It's fun watching the kids try not to be seen. I keep pinching myself, but this isn't a dream, chemo is actually finished!! Thanks for letting me share. Have a great weekend everyone.

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  • Kanort
    Kanort Member Posts: 1,272 Member
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    Fabulous!!!
    Hi Madre,

    Today was the beginning of many more milestones to come! Finishing chemo is such an accomplishment and definitely a reason to celebrate! Pamper yourself and relax before returning to work....you deserve it!

    Hugs,

    Kay
  • KathiM
    KathiM Member Posts: 8,028 Member
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    I'll dance for you!!! (I'm already naked)....
    NAKED HAPPY DANCE!!!! YEA YEA YEA!!!

    Take care of yourself, my dear...and don't ramp up too fast! Remember, your body has followed you unquestioningly into battle....take care of it now!

    Hugs, Kathi

    Happy Great Pumpkin!!!
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
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    Yayayaya!!
    Hi Madre,

    That's such wonderful news about being finished all 12 treatments!! I know the feeling of being thrilled that that was the last one... then I did kind of get the post-treatment blues that the others have talked about once treatments were finished. So don't be surprised if you do get those "blues"... rumour has it they are common and totally normal :)

    Meanwhile... wow, you are going back to work very quickly!! Is this your choice or a "Hey, you are off treatment, it's time to come back to work" kind of thing?

    The reason I ask... even though your treatments are over, it takes a good 4-6 weeks for the chemo to leave your body (some people longer)... and then, depending on your own system, it can take a few months for all your good cells to be regenerated. Remember, chemo kills the good cells as well as the bad cells... the only difference being the good cells do regenerate, the cancer cells are killed and don't regrow.

    Also, depending if you had any side affects from the chemo... that might take some time to get back up to speed (neuropathy, pains, aches, aggravated arthritis, etc).

    I know when I finished my 12 treatments, I asked my oncologist when I should start thinking about going back to work. She said that she would like me to be off for 3 months, and if possible up to 6 months... just to give my body time to recoup. This isn't a problem for me since I do have the Long Term Disability... and it was in that time that we found the cancer in the adrenal gland and spots in the lung, so going back to work went out the window.

    I look and feel great right now... so I talked to my GP just a little while ago and said, "You know... I feel great, so sometimes I get these guilt feelings like I should be going back to work." His wise answer to me was, "Did it ever dawn on you that the reason you are feeling good is because you have the option of being off work and using the time to heal your body? If you were back at work, not only would you have the ongoing job of appointments, scans, tests, surgeries, you would have the stress that you were letting your employer down because you were missing so much work for these various things." He told me that my job now is to be good to myself and look after myself... so that I can continue looking and feeling as good as I do, and if work gives me any grief (not that they have or ever would... they are soooo supportive of me), he said that I'm to let him know . Ooooh, I don't think work wants to get into an argument with my doctor if he gets angry... he's always been so protective of me .

    Anywho... just keep it in the back of your mind. You may feel like you've been off work for a long time but 7 months is not a long time considering what your body had been put through during that time. If it's any consolation, I've been off since Dec 1, 2006 and the journey continues :)

    Hugggggs,

    Cheryl
  • Madre
    Madre Member Posts: 123
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    Yayayaya!!
    Hi Madre,

    That's such wonderful news about being finished all 12 treatments!! I know the feeling of being thrilled that that was the last one... then I did kind of get the post-treatment blues that the others have talked about once treatments were finished. So don't be surprised if you do get those "blues"... rumour has it they are common and totally normal :)

    Meanwhile... wow, you are going back to work very quickly!! Is this your choice or a "Hey, you are off treatment, it's time to come back to work" kind of thing?

    The reason I ask... even though your treatments are over, it takes a good 4-6 weeks for the chemo to leave your body (some people longer)... and then, depending on your own system, it can take a few months for all your good cells to be regenerated. Remember, chemo kills the good cells as well as the bad cells... the only difference being the good cells do regenerate, the cancer cells are killed and don't regrow.

    Also, depending if you had any side affects from the chemo... that might take some time to get back up to speed (neuropathy, pains, aches, aggravated arthritis, etc).

    I know when I finished my 12 treatments, I asked my oncologist when I should start thinking about going back to work. She said that she would like me to be off for 3 months, and if possible up to 6 months... just to give my body time to recoup. This isn't a problem for me since I do have the Long Term Disability... and it was in that time that we found the cancer in the adrenal gland and spots in the lung, so going back to work went out the window.

    I look and feel great right now... so I talked to my GP just a little while ago and said, "You know... I feel great, so sometimes I get these guilt feelings like I should be going back to work." His wise answer to me was, "Did it ever dawn on you that the reason you are feeling good is because you have the option of being off work and using the time to heal your body? If you were back at work, not only would you have the ongoing job of appointments, scans, tests, surgeries, you would have the stress that you were letting your employer down because you were missing so much work for these various things." He told me that my job now is to be good to myself and look after myself... so that I can continue looking and feeling as good as I do, and if work gives me any grief (not that they have or ever would... they are soooo supportive of me), he said that I'm to let him know . Ooooh, I don't think work wants to get into an argument with my doctor if he gets angry... he's always been so protective of me .

    Anywho... just keep it in the back of your mind. You may feel like you've been off work for a long time but 7 months is not a long time considering what your body had been put through during that time. If it's any consolation, I've been off since Dec 1, 2006 and the journey continues :)

    Hugggggs,

    Cheryl

    Thank you
    Thanks Cheryl for your insight. Actually I am excited to go back to work, I am boared at home. They are working with me, what ever I can handle and just go home when I need to. I still have 4 vacation days and a personal day i haven't used. I work retail so my job is open 7 days a week 10 hours a day, so I can pop in and out. I am in the office so I have some flexibility. My side effects near the end were much less than at the beginning. And yes, disability has run out and I caryy the health insurance so some of this decision is out of my hands, but I pray alot and I think God has a plan and he will get me through this. Thank you again.
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
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    Madre said:

    Thank you
    Thanks Cheryl for your insight. Actually I am excited to go back to work, I am boared at home. They are working with me, what ever I can handle and just go home when I need to. I still have 4 vacation days and a personal day i haven't used. I work retail so my job is open 7 days a week 10 hours a day, so I can pop in and out. I am in the office so I have some flexibility. My side effects near the end were much less than at the beginning. And yes, disability has run out and I caryy the health insurance so some of this decision is out of my hands, but I pray alot and I think God has a plan and he will get me through this. Thank you again.

    Going back to work
    Hey, it does sound like you have a plan... and it sounds like your employer is going to be supportive and work with you on this. Also, I do think that if one is getting bored at home, then hey, that's a sign that it's time to be doing something and getting the mind and body back to being active. I just wanted to make sure that you were aware that when the mind is ready to go back, the body might not be .

    It's true, I haven't been back to work since Dec 2006... on the other hand, I haven't been apartment-bound by any stretch of the imagination... even while in treatments. I am very much involved in the local theatre scene, both on a community level and a professional level. So one of my life's guilty pleasures is that now that I'm not working I can be involved with the theatre full time (IE: during the day and evenings). I can pick my hours (mornings are definitely not my best times, so I stay home in the mornings until my arthritis is under control) but spend a few afternoons a week at the theatre office, work galas, benefits and actual shows in the evenings... and of course, am allowed to have a full social life of going out for lunches, dinners, etc.

    Ok, so maybe my life is now all about fun and doing my passion (theatre)... and because of that, my medical journey goes quite easy for me. If I had to work 5 days/week in the job I was in (worked for the Provincial Government as a Systems Analyst/Instructor and traveled all over the province training government employees on government computer systems), I have no idea how I would be able to juggle the treatments and work... not to mention not being able to move well in the mornings :)

    Life is good... it seems that when we think we have hurdles that are not beatable, somehow it all works out... so my rule of thumb... go with the flow and enjoy the journey :)

    Hugggggs,

    Cheryl