Yesterday was long and hard, physically and emotionally. I am weary today, but I am enjoying an afternoon snuggled in my delicious new RED bed linens. How I love red!
I wanted to give y’all an update on my status and progress. I went in yesterday morning for my radiation appointment. It consisted of 2 hours in freezing cold rooms undergoing x-rays, CT-scans, and markings for my radiation treatments. The markings process is tedious, because I couldn’t move for the entire length of time they were measuring and drawing all over me. Try not moving when the room temperature is 0 degrees and you’re biting your lips so hard they’re bleeding because you’re trying not to shiver or let your teeth chatter. Okay, so I exaggerate. A bit.
My friend, K-Stat, was also very glad to hear that the tattoos I received are very real and very permanent. They stabbed me a hundred thousand times with a needle in order to mark exactly where they need to treat me and make sure that it is the exact same place every time. Okay, it was only 6 injections, but it hurt! However, I can now impress all my friends with the fact that I am cool enough to have a tattoo. At least, that’s what K-Stat thinks.
I did not have an actual radiation treatment yesterday, because next week I will go back for more markings. My actual treatments will begin next Thursday.
After a lunch break, I returned to the cancer center for bloodwork, an appointment with my oncologist and a Herceptin treatment. It was a long afternoon while I waited for lab results and learned that I am still very anemic, thus the extreme fatigue I’m experiencing. My doctor also updated me on the notes from the radiation oncologist. She is going to be giving me a very high dose of radiation because of how aggressive my cancer was. This was discouraging to hear on two counts: first, because of the reminder of just how abysmal this all is, and second, because I will be more prone to some nasty side effects.
My oncologist (have I ever mentioned how amazing he is? Because, well, he is amazing!) told me the last few weeks of radiation will probably be pretty difficult, and that I’ll have to be careful of skin infections from the burning. But he also reminded me that he would do whatever I needed to make it through this next phase.
Hanging with K-Stat for the afternoon during my Hercepin treatment brought me lots of laughter on what was otherwise a very discouraging day. She amused my oncology nurse quite a bit as well. I am so amazed by the friendships God has given me and the ways He has surrounded me during such a difficult time.
Heading home to a sick Audrey only added to the difficulty of my day. Brian took her to the doctor, and the poor thing is coughing, dripping, congested, feverish, and pitiful. Last night she awoke at 11:30 and spent the rest of the night in our bed tossing, turning and moaning, so we are all like the walking dead today. I cannot stand to watch her suffer. She has spent the day cuddling with me, and I long to take away her misery.
As rough as life has been, I am reminded of God’s faithfulness through the words of Job.
You will surely forget your trouble, recalling it only as waters gone by. Life will be brighter than noonday, and darkness will become like morning. You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety. (Job 11:16-18)
I am waiting in anticipation for that day, but until then I cling to His promise of strength for each day. Thank y’all so much for walking through this with me, for your prayers and your encouragement. I am blessed.