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Ok, I'm definitley in this sorority now

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Hi All, CheeseQueen here and here is my story so far:

Post-menopausal for 20 years, had early menopause at age 39 (don't be deceived by my profile picture, that was in 1976!).  In January, started having bleeding.  Had been to gyno in November, no problems. 

  • 1/5/16  Gyno retired in December, had to see colllegue in practice who did endometrial biopsy and said to wait 2 weeks to get transvaginal ultrasound.  And BTW, just found out that previous gyno had not done PAP in 3 years.  All the while, I thought he was doing a PAP each year when I went in for my annual exam (note to self, always follow up on results!)!
  • 1/15/16 Endo biopsy report states predominately blood and rare fragments of endometrium with focal stromal breakdown suggesting repeat sampling and follow up.  So in other words, poor sample quality.  Waste of time, effort, and pain.  I don't know why they even do these anymore.  So I wasted the month of January on this and waiting to do transvaginal ultrasound
  • 1/26/16: Transvaginal and abdominal ultrasound results indicate endometrial stripe 1.3 cm, 3.0 cm righ adnexal mass, perhaps pendunculated right uterine fibroid but not sure.  Diffuse uterine adenomyosis.  Suggests contrast pelvic MRI
  • 2/3/16: MRI indicates slightly enlarged uterus, abnormal endometrial stripe and thickened consistent with adenomyosis.  Appears to be right-sided pedunculated fibroid.  Small amount of free fluid within the pelvis. Ovaries unremarkable.  Further eval warranted
  • 2/1/16. CA 125 in normal range at 20
  • 2/6/16 Had D&C and Hystoscopy and got results on 2/18/16: high grade endometrial adenocarcinoma which is more likely of endometroid type based on pathology, but more specific diagnosis deferred to surgical speciman
  • Scheduled for CT scan 3/7/16
  • Scheduled for DaVinci surgery at Fox Chase 3/17/16 (Happy St. Patrick's Day!)

Appreciate all and any advice as I embark on this journey.  I have had intermittent pain in my lower right flank through this process.  Doctor says could be the fibroid, but I never had any problems with fibroids in the past and ultrasound 7 years ago showed no evidence of a fibroid.  I did have some bleeding 7 years ago and had ultrasound and biopsy which apparently showed nothing.  Now I'm kinda wondering if I should have pushed a little harder at that time.  Who knew?

I feel I'm finally in good hands at Fox Chase.  But I am concerned that this might not just be as easy as just surgery.  At the very least, will require radiation therapy of some sort.  My family had a trip of a lifetime scheduled for April 12 to Tuscany that of course, I'm now out of.  Very upsetting.  They are trying to decide who, if any of them will still go.  Feel like everything is on hold until results come back after surgery. 

Thanks for forum to vent.  Sometimes that's all we need, isn't it?

CheeseQueen

 

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1374
Joined: Oct 2015

I'm sorry you had to join us but you're among friends here.  Yup, it certainly does put your life on hold, doesn't it?  The first few months are especially rough as everything gets sorted out.  I had a total hysterectomy on September 30th and danced out of the hospital the morning of October 1st.  I never even had to take a pain pill.  That was the easy part.

I have UPSC, Stage II, Grade 3.  I made it through three rounds of chemo before the wheels fell off the bus.  As I've witnessed on this site, everyone had different reactions to chemo and radiation.  

I'm glad you found a good cancer team that you trust.  It seems that women near large cities have many more choices than those of us in small towns.  

Good luck with everything and keep us posted about how it goes!!!

Love,

Eldri

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Hey Eldri:

I just love seeing your smiling face on your posts.  Makes my day!  Must be that ole' midwestern charm.  I'm a Michigan gal myself (hence the Cheese Queen!) but now find myself in the Philly area for the past 30 years (what we'll do for love!).  I just love your profile picture!

Kvdyson's picture
Kvdyson
Posts: 789
Joined: Jan 2016

Hi CheeseQueen, I agree with Eldri that we're so sorry to have to meet under these circumstances. You'll find a lot of support here as you travel along your journey. At this stage, my two recommendations are:

1) be sure that you receive copies of all of your pathology reports for your files. I ended up getting 3 opinions on my diagnosis before settling on a specific treatment. It went pretty quickly because I was able to provide copies of the reports directly. Hopefully your experience will be more straightforward!

2) be sure that your surgeon is an gynecological-oncologist. They are the experts in this field and will ensure that your surgery is as effective as possible.

Good luck and please know that we're all routing for you!

Wishing you strength and good health,
Kim
Debulking Surgery 10.5 cm (TAH & BSO, 14 lymph nodes excised) - Sept 2015; 47 years old
Dx: Uterine carcinosarcoma (MMMT) Stage 1b, Grade 3 - Sept 2015
Frontline: Chemo (Taxol-day 1 & Ifosfamide/Mesna-days 1-3) - 6 rounds - Dec 2015 - June 2016
Radiation - external, 28 treatments over 6 weeks - Feb - Mar 2016

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Thanks for the insight, Kim.  Agree, I've been collecting all my reports for my own files and plan to get 2nd and maybe 3rd opinions on any follow up care necessary because from what I see, that seems to be where there is potentially differences of opinion and not clear guidelines.

Surgeon is gyn/oncol at Fox Chase.  My gyn wanted to do the surgery with a gyn/oncol standing by to stage....I said no, no, no wait a minute here....since I am in the Philly area with great medical institutions,  no way was I going for that.  I'm very comfortable with surgeon who has >30  years experience and pioneered minimally invasive surgery. But from what I understand, I think surgery will be the easy part of this.

I may be putting the cart before the horse here, but I'm thinking of getting the shingles shot (even though I'm not quite 60 yet).  Has anyone had a problem with shingles when going through their therapy?  I'm hopeful that I won't need chemo, but of course, I just don't know yet.

Thanks, in advance, I may post the shingles thing separate.

 

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

I also had not had the shingles vaccine prior to chemo, and because of timing, I couldn't do the vaccine because it's a live virus.  So my oncologist had me use acyclovir as a prophylactic.

txtrisha55's picture
txtrisha55
Posts: 685
Joined: Apr 2011

I do not know if the shingles vaccination works as I have not had it.  I have had a case of shingles though.  Worse pain ever.  Worse than my hysterectomy, chemo treatments and hernia, gallbladder surgery.

 I would prefer to go through chemo again than get the shingles again.  I still have side effect from the shingles.  trish

 

Sandy3185's picture
Sandy3185
Posts: 228
Joined: Oct 2013

Sounds awful! Good to see you back though, it's been a while.  Love and hugs, Sandy

Donswife48
Posts: 307
Joined: Nov 2015

Things might not be as bad as you think.  If it's endometrial cancer, low stage, although I know you said high grade,  you may not need anything more than follow up.  If you are having Da Vinci surgery, I (like Eldri) didn't have pain after surgery.  I know it's a little iffy to know about these things, but I could have went on a trip of a lifetime the next week after surgery.  Even though I have stage 3c grade 3, my chemo doctor visit wasn't until two weeks laster, then another two weeks or more until I started chemo.  Are you able to talk with anyone at your doctors about still making the trip (assuming you haven't canceled your part)?  Sorry to hear the word cancer from anyone, but we're all sloughing through treatment, some have more than others.  Hugs Nancy

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Thanks for the encouragement Nancy.

We haven't cancelled the trip yet.  Fortunately, my credit card will cover the cost of cancelling for my husband, son, and me, but NOT my son's girlfriend.  My surgeon was not too optimistic about me making the trip.  My main concerns were an 8 hour flight (blood clot risk?), not having enough energy to walk around a lot ( which I actually could deal with), or having some kind of medical emergency while in the wilds of Tuscany.  I don't think we would need to cancel until the last minute, frankly. 

How long does it usually take to get the pathology reports back after surgery?  My surgery is scheduled for March 17 and our trip is scheduled for April 12.  Perhaps there is still hope I can go Laughing

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

about having to possibly cancel a trip.  10 years ago I badly sprained my knee two weeks before a friend and I were supposed to leave for Australia, also a trip of a lifetime.  I was devastated, because my trip was to be a very active trip... biking, kayaking, diveboat.  There was no way I could have made that trip except on crutches, and I cried when I had to cancel.  

Now, I can say that a month after my hysterectomy, I was out on the dance floor and getting around quite fine.  However, I am not sure that I would have opted for a full-blown European vacation.  If you have the flexibility to cancel at the last minute and still get most of your money back, I'd say wait.  Listen to your body after surgey and see how you feel then about that long flight and what you may or may not feel like as far as energy level and activity. 

In my case, the pathology was back in about a week, though my follow-up appointment wasn't until a few weeks after that.

Chris

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Thanks Chris!  That's encouraging.  Sorry about your Australia trip.  I would be fine letting my party go out and do things while I rested, if necessary.  I'm not the most active, physical gal anyway Laughing.  Perhaps if I committed to drinking a lot of water, wore compression stockings and got up and walked ( instead of sleeping) on the flight over, I might be able to swing this, if surgery goes well.  And as many have said, if you need follow up therapy, it's usually not scheduled for weeks after.  This trip is only for 8 days.  I think we'll wait a while before making a definite decision. 

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 1456
Joined: Jun 2012

i definitely would wait as long as possible to decide about canceling the trip.  I think you've got time to recover from the surgery as long as you are sensible about pacing yourself.  My concern would be the flight and blood clots.  Don't know how long after surgery that that wouldn't be an issue.  Hopefully the steps you outlined would be sufficient.  Good luck.

joannewtta's picture
joannewtta
Posts: 43
Joined: Jul 2014

Have you begged and pleaded and asked if there were any cancellations that you could be scheduled sooner. If you are still working that might not work but I wouldn't be hesitant to beg, plead and grovel for a sooner surgery date.  When my gyny/onc had the diagnosis of UPSC he pointed to the calendar in about one week and said I want you in surgery NOW! I think I could have put off the start of chemo a week or two but not the surgers. I was State 3, grade 3C and started chemo 4 weeks after surgery. I was almost 68 at the time and recovered very quickly from surgery.

Wishing you the very best.

 

Joanne

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Great idea Joanne.  I'll call the nurse navigator now and ask to be on a cancellation list.  I have my own business so I could be flexible. 

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

We did do that trip to Australia the following year and had a wonderful time.  We had travel insurance so we got all of the money back that we had already paid.

I think the idea of seeing if you could get the surgery scheduled earlier is a great one!

Lou Ann M's picture
Lou Ann M
Posts: 996
Joined: Feb 2015

but glad you found us.  We are a strong feisty group.  You will find that you are much stronger than you ever thought you could be.  As hard as it is, the waiting to know is always the hardest part of this battle.  My Doctors have all been really good about adjusting times so I could be a part of special family events.  Hugs and prayers, Lou Ann

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Thanks all. They have no earlier dates but said they would call if something became available. That's probably the best I can do at this point. I don't suppose many people cancel out of this kind of surgery. 

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 903
Joined: Jan 2016

Hi! Welcome to the group. It took me several months before I found this one and I'm so glad I did. So much good advice

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 903
Joined: Jan 2016

I did write a long reply, but for some reason only one sentence showed up. Maybe it will later. I contacted support and they are working on it. I am 3c clear cell. I will say after my surgery I felt so much better than before. I did go to Florida for my daughter's Disney wedding before the surgery. I only wish I had had the surgery earlier as I didn't feel well during the trip, but alas the wheels of progress don't always go as fast as we want. Nevertheless less the trip was worth it. Good luck and welcome!

BabyCoach's picture
BabyCoach
Posts: 95
Joined: Mar 2016

I so hear you. Diagnosed yesterday and have not yet learned to pace myself with information. Hardly noticed a thing yesterday morning but today I can feel the cancer metastizing! I do better with information and hope to have appointment with surgeon scheduled Monday. Just for the record, I do not want to be a cancer patient! That becomes one's identity for at least a while and I like being thought of in other ways. But here I am. Talk (often) to you later. 

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1374
Joined: Oct 2015

Welcome, BC, to the club NOBODY wants to belong to.  This is a wonderful group of women who pretty much know everything about uterine cancer.  I don't know how I would have made it this far without them!

I am Eldri, 63, diagnosed with Stage II, Grade 3 UPSC after my hysterectomy on September 30th.  The hysterectomy was the easy part.  My gyno/oncologist used the DiVinci robot and 18 hours after my surgery I danced out of the hospital.  Chemo did not go so good but I'm 13 weeks out from it and getting better every day.

Let us know how you're doing!!!

Love,

Eldri

Donswife48
Posts: 307
Joined: Nov 2015

I do not want to be a cancer patient either but I don't have the final word on my life.  I have to roll with the punches, the less I fight against the odds, the better I am.   Sorry to have to face the facts, but it is what it is.  We have two choices, to live in reality or to live in a fairy tale land.  I'm sick and tired of cancer, but it is my life.  What do you choose?

ncg007
Posts: 132
Joined: Nov 2015

CQ...sorry to have to welcome you to the sorority.   Sounds like you've got a good plan with obtaining records in advance and preparing for more opinions in the event treatment is needed; this would have been my advice regardless of how much you like initial dr.  If you do find that you need treatment, get a good understandping of not just the stage and grade, but the exact cancer cell type(s) and if it is USPC or MMMT; it took me a while to grasp this with all the information overload.  I hope all works out with surgery and you are able to make the trip.

Nancy

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 1095
Joined: Sep 2011

I think I have been very remissed in not welcoming all you newbies to the board.  So sorry!, but glad to have you all here, just not for the reason!  I am Debra(Jo) and I'm beginning to feel like the "old Lady" here!  Some of our long time members are not posting, just enjoying life.  I am UPSC 1a, grade c.  diagnosed in July of 2009.  Five years NED now, thank  God!  I didn't find this group til everything was over for me, chemo, radiation, surgery, ect.  I found Linda P.'s post and it felt like a life saver!  I was one big hot mess when I got here, so am very glad to have your find us.  This is the very best bunch of ladies and gentlemen you will ever meet.  We welcome all questions, successes, failures, fears, vent, rages, and emotions!  Best, Debra (Jo)

 

joannewtta's picture
joannewtta
Posts: 43
Joined: Jul 2014

It seems like most of the new ladies are finding us early on this journey. Like you Debra I didn't find this Board until I was finished with treatment. What I would have given to have all this knowledge and experience(not by choice) early on. I was diagnosed 6/13 UPSC Stage 3, grade 3c. Dancing with NED now for two years and have no reason to believe it won't continue for another twenty. I'm seventy a few months ago. Hang in there newbies and use us oldies for our experience. Notice I didn't say knowledge. Lol

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

I've already found this group of immense value in my short journey. Thank you all both short-timers and long-timers. You give us all inspiration and hope. 

I was able to see results from my chest X-ray and labs and all looked fine. Bilirubin one point above normal but I've had that before and eGFR >59 instead of >60 which I suppose is still okay for a 58 year old. Now on to the CT scan tomorrow realizing some unremarkable stuff may show up on that. Anyone else get scanned before surgery?

Thanks again for all your kindness, support, but most importantly of all, honesty. 

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1584
Joined: Jun 2015

As others have said... glad you found us and so sorry that you needed to.  None of us want to deal with cancer. And the beginning is really the hardest part emotionally. Once you know what you are dealing with, you with find amazing strength and will get through whatever is required to live a full life. That being said, yes - cancer will become your focus for the next 6 months. But you will get beyond it and hopefully put it in your rearview mirror forever.  There is a thread titled 'Ladies going through chemo' that will be very helpful for you. Several of us documented the impacts that chemo had on us with each treatment. There is another thread titled 'Let's talk about Radiation' that also documents impacts. Both are packed with good information and may help take some of the fear away.

We are here to help, share and support. Ask any and all questions. The ladies here helped me more than I can begin to describe.

Love and Hugs,

Cindi

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1374
Joined: Oct 2015

I had my CT scan about a week after my surgery.  My oncologist was expecting Stage I, Grade 1 endometrial cancer but after the hysterectomy, he found UPSC - Stage ?, Grade 3, so scheduled me immediately for a CT scan to see if it had spread.  Luckily, they could find NED (No Evidence of Disease) so I became Stage II, Grade 3.  BUT....they did find a few fatty spots on my liver and some small pockets in my colon.  My oncologist didn't care about those at all but my GP was interested - LOL!  She said at my age (63), she wasn't surprised but it's good to know they're there.

Best of luck on your CT scan!!  During my chemo my bilirubin level really went up and my liver started pumping out glucose like crazy making my blood glucose in the 400-500 range when fasting.  Thankfully, when we stopped the chemo, those levels returned to normal although it took about three months.

Love,

Eldri

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Thanks Eldi:

I'm expecting a little fat on the liver,  had that before.  Got rid of it with weight loss, but I'm afraid that has crept back up on me.  Once I'm past the surgery, plan to ask whoever will listen about Meformin.  Tried to get my endo and PCP to put me on in the past due to my pre-diabetes state, but couldn't convince them.  I think I've always had some degree of insulin resistance.  Perhaps now with this going on, they may be more ready to do it.  Why not?

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

Yes, I was scanned before surgery and nothing showed up.

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1374
Joined: Oct 2015

My A1c returned to normal according to my blood tests last week but I convinced my GP to keep me on the metformin.  I still have a higher fasting BG than I should.  There are some reports out there regarding metformin's use in treating cancer.  So....I figure, it sure can't hurt me, right?   T2 diabetes runs in my family unfortunately.

Love,

Eldri

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1584
Joined: Jun 2015

I was also scanned before surgery. And, I have had one scan after chemo.  I have No Evidence of Disease.

 

cindy0519
Posts: 173
Joined: Nov 2015

Not the place any of us seek out until we need to but glad you found this board.  As others have suggested ...ask about moving surgery up.  I had a DisneyWorld trip planned with my sisters for the first week in November. My GYN ONCO wanted at least 3 weeks recovery time between surgery and the trip and even moved her schedule around and the surgery on her normal day off (a Friday) so I could have the 3 weeks recovery time and do the trip.  She said she felt it was equally as important that I do the trip as it was a good thing for mental status prior to starting chemo.  She did however insist that I use a scooter to limit exhaustion as well as a blood thinner for 30 days to prevent blood clots.  Glad she insisted and was willing to make it happen - it was great to take the trip!

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Hi Sisters,

Just a short update. I'm recovering well from my surgery. Just a few pangs here and there and I'm not on any pain meds. 

My son and his girlfriend arrived home from Orlando for the weekend and we've been enjoying family time. Tonight we leave for an 8 day trip to Tuscany. I've reserved a wheelchair at the airport, have a pair of compression panty hose, and have been taking baby aspirin for a few days. I think I'm ready for some great food, great scenery and the making of wonderful family memories to carry me through my next unplanned journey of 18 weeks of chemo followed by radiation. 

One of my dear friends sent me the book "Praying Through Cancer" which is a 90 day devotional for women. She and 2 other friends and I will read this together through my chemo. What a gift!

In May, my BFF will come up from Dallas for a week to care for me. We've been friends since college. Tragically, she's lost her father, mother, and brother to cancer at very young ages, which has made her an excellent caregiver. 

I am investigating acupuncturists despite being discouraged from doing so by my oncologist. From what I've read and heard from friends, it may help with the neuropathy with the taxol. I intend to pursue it in a medical center setting. 

I'be purchased my wig and a baseball hat with hair for the beach. Wow!  What a market we cancer patients are!  I was talked in to a cream that's supposed to save my eyebrows. We'll see. When I come back from Italy, I'm going to have my hairdresser give me a pixie    

I guess I'm as ready as I'm going to be for my port insertion on April 25 and first chemo on April 27. But only because of the love, support, and advice of not only my wonderful friends and family, but you my sisters who I know are always there with a kind of support that no one else can provide. Thank you so much for your love and support. It means so much. 

Susan

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1374
Joined: Oct 2015

I hope you have an absolutely wonderful time in Italy!!  Try to forget the cancer and just enjoy yourself.  I framed a quotation and I read it every day "Worrying won't stop the bad stuff from happening; it just stops you from enjoying the good."  

Enjoy the good!!!

Love,

Eldri

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1584
Joined: Jun 2015

Susan, Have a wonderful trip! So happy that you are able to go and make those memories! I have the baseball cap with hair and use it often. Since the hair is synthetic, it made my neck itch. So, I left some long around my face and pulled the rest back in a pony-tail. Works great!

Eldri - I love that quotation and it is so darn true!

Love and Hugs,

Cindi

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

Have a wonderful time in Italy.  Those are my people!  One of the little weird things I will never forget was at the roadside rest stops you could get wine out of drink dispensers like the ones we have here for soft drinks.  

Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!

Chris

molimoli
Posts: 514
Joined: Aug 2014

Have a wonderful trip and I hope the Creator will keep you and your family sheltered as you have the time of your lives. You will be just fine.

I am happy you are stepping out on cancer, it must never be the boss of you at all, ever.

Moli -- wishing plenty blessings.

 

BC Brady's picture
BC Brady
Posts: 70
Joined: May 2015

You are inspiring me to make plans for a trip to France. Can't wait to hear how your adventure went. Please write to us soon!

GO FOR IT!

Billie

BC Brady's picture
BC Brady
Posts: 70
Joined: May 2015

I'm just checking in. So happy you went on your trip. Perhaps you wrote an update on a new thread and I missed it. I wanted you to know that I wish you all the best for your first chemo. I pray you will sail through like the breezes over Tuscany!

Love and Prayers,

Billie

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Thanks so much Billie   Waiting for a chair right now. 

BabyCoach's picture
BabyCoach
Posts: 95
Joined: Mar 2016

so glad to hear it!  Tuscany is a wonderful place to indulge so GO FOR IT! What a great opportunity to prepare. Accumulate some visions you can return to in the days ahead of you. Actually PLAN some cool events and family activities to which you can return as you sit in the chemo chair. Options are everywhere!

Your message gives me hope. Out of surgery 1 week and still hoping that we can take a planned trip to Russia and Scandinavia mid May. I have the same concerns as you did - especially the long flight and the problems that may accompany finding medical help in Russia if need be. It's just the two of us and a rental car but so far - not canceling anything. 

Enjoy every minute of Tuscany. YOU deserve it!

Mary Ann

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1374
Joined: Oct 2015

Mary Ann, that sounds like a wonderful trip too!!  My sister has been after me for years to go with her to Scandinavia and find the places our grandparents were born.  We still have relatives in Norway and Sweden.  I've always put it off but you and Susan have inspired me.  My sister will be tied up, working in China until the spring of 2017 so maybe I'll give myself that gift for my 65th birthday in June of 2017.  

Love,

Eldri

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 903
Joined: Jan 2016

So great your trip is on! I wish that I had had my surgery before my Florida trip as I felt so much better then! I hope this will be the case for you! Enjoy!

BabyCoach's picture
BabyCoach
Posts: 95
Joined: Mar 2016

Oh Eldri. You should should should do that. My heritage is Danish. Except for Russia I've been to those countries but not my husband. They are among the most awesome territory on the planet - especially Norway. You DO it. Buy your tickets now so you can have an exciting goal to anticipate. You will be so glad you did!  Touching our roots and feeling the presence of the courageous in our families a worthy event!

Same goes for all the sisters here. 

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

Hey Baby!

I worked for a company based in Denmark for many years and was fortunate to travel to Copenhagen multiple times. Beautiful city. Would love to go back someday. 

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

i plan to imprint everything so I can relive it every day in that chair. I started a journal so I won't forget anything. 

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 1456
Joined: Jun 2012

and tell us all about it when you get back

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 849
Joined: Feb 2016

What a wonderful vacation.  Thank God I went.  What beautiful memories I will carry in my heart forever!   I really built my endurance up.  My son's girlfriend wears a FitBit and most days we had walked over 10,000 steps and with many rest periods, I for the most part, kept up.  A couple days were very exhausting, but I survived and it was SO WORTH IT!.  I did get a wheelchair for the airport stints and that really helped, especially it helped us avoid long lines at security and at customs.  And you'd be surprised how far some of those gates are.  I sort of felt guilty riding in the chair after walking so much on vacation, but then I got over that real quick.  I pretty much ate whatever I want and had gelato every day, but that stops now. 

We had a few emotional moments and tears when it hit us how important this trip was to all of us and if things didn't go exactly perfect,  but we pretty much tried to keep them under wrap and enjoy the moment.  I kept a detailed travel journal, we took hundreds of pictures,  and I'm working on putting together a travel photo book before I get too wiped out. 

Now on to the hard work.  I was moved by Nancy's post about returning to work and realized that I hadn't asked the important questions about the cost/benefits of my treatment.  In some ways, it's almost like I don't want to know the statistics are not good or that the side effects may not be worth the time gained. As always, Moli's words of wisdom, "We can't change yesterday into tomorrow so we must step out of it courageously and embrace the newness of tomorrow with an awsome new point of veiw and an unshakable resolve to absolutely not lose the rest of our lives to cancer" hit the nail right on the head!

I'm getting resistance from my oncologist regarding acupuncture and the use of metformin, so I plan to talk to my PCP (who is also my dear friend) regarding both.  She has already referred me for acupunture and is on board with that.  I do have insulin resistance although still at the pre-diabetes stage and have been trying to get her and my endo to put me on metformin for years to no avail.  I'm going to try again with my PCP even though my oncologist's resistance was merely to the the possible GI side effects, which to me is not valid enough to rule it out.  I would prefer to hit this with everything the first time, not wait for a reoocurence. The oncologist's resistance to acupuncture was because of the risk of infection, which when I researched according the the NIH:  "Serious adverse effects of acupuncture are rare.....  Very few hepatitis or other infections associated with acupuncture have been reported since 1988, when widespread use of disposable needles was introduced and national certification requirements for clean-needle techniques were developed and enforced as an acupuncture licensure requirement.[3,4] Because cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy are immunocompromised, precautions must be taken and strict clean-needle techniques must be applied when acupuncture treatment is given.[5]"

I'm going to go pick up my wig to day and try to start getting used to it. I need to order some little hats to wear at night, I guess. Tomorrow appointment with pain managment regarding acupuncture, Friday pre-admission testing for my port placement on Monday.  Chemo starts on Wednesday, April 27.  I got myself a Pandora bracelet and for every week of chemo I get through I'm rewarding myself with a charm.  I have 4 charms ready.  I should have a pretty good bracelet after 18 weeks.  We'll see if I continue this with radiation :)

We got an invitation to a wedding up in Vermont for June 5.  I'm not thinking we are going to be able to make that one. 

I guess I'm as ready as I'm ever going to be. My friends and family are rallying.  My BFF is coming up for a week in a couple weeks to help care for me and my son and his girlfriend will be up to visit over Memorial Day. 

Thank you all, my sisters, for always being there.  I wish you all good health and joy.  Thanks for riding with me on this journey.

Susan

Kvdyson's picture
Kvdyson
Posts: 789
Joined: Jan 2016

Susan, it is so wonderful to hear that you went on your trip and had a marvelous time! You may be surprised that the side effects of your upcoming chemo treatments will not as bad as you may be thinking. I finished my fourth round of chemo last Thursday and was back to work on Friday. Hopefully your treatments will be as uneventful as mine have been. Wishing you drama-free treatments and many more wonderful adventures with your family and friends! Kim  

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