Tuesday 10 October 2023

Ripping Out my Geogradient Shawl, Westknits MKAL 2023

 You know I spent entirely too much time during the night planning what I wanted to say.

And then this morning writing a draft of what I wanted to say.

Before ultimately deciding Stephen captured just about everything that needed to be said in his video a New Direction - MKAL 2023.

So here's to ripping out and casting back on!

Sunday 30 April 2023

TCH Chemotherapy Round 1 Day 1 (Docetaxel, Carboplatin and Herceptin)


Well Yesterday we got things under way. Kevin and I hopped into the car just after 8 am, and drove down to the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary for my first round of chemo.

The day before we got things started with a couple doses of steroids, dexamethasone, morning of more dex and some zolfran for nausea.

I barely slept the night before. Likely a combo of nerves and the dex, and Marshall waking me up at 1:30 in the morning. 

Anyways, hospitals are beautifully empty on weekends, chemo Saturdays are the way to go in my opinion. My nurse Brenda was absolutely lovely, and everyone loved my chemo crocks and matching lulu sweater. My fresh blue hair was also a hit.

I got situated into my comfy recliner, and hooked up to my iv (hopefully I'll have a port by next time) and we spent the next 6 or so hours running drugs or saline.

The Herceptin first over 90 minutes was no problem. Then a 1 hour watch period with just saline.

The Docetaxel is the worse culprit for peripheral neuropathy, so we iced my hands and feet for the hour on that one. I definitely was watching the clock the whole time.

Then finished with the Carboplatin over an hour. That was the only one with a noticeable side effect, just in the last 10 minutes of the transfusion did my vein decide it had had enough. Lots of burning and stinging. But a warm compress and a flush with a sugar solution afterwards helped quite a lot. It's still a super tender vein today, but there are worse things.

On the drive home I had such a wave of fatigue, we pulled into our driveway just after 5 and I was straight to sleep until 7. Finished the day by celebrating the Leafs finally making it out of the first round of the playoffs (in 19 years) and tucking my kiddos into bed.  Then Kevin and I went for a nice cool evening walk up the road, 2km round trip and I slept like the dead last night.

Not too bad for my first day. For next time we need to do a better job of packing some real food and not just a big bag of snacks for the day. We watched some Walking Dead (Kevin has never watched and when started back at season 1 just after I was diagnosed, we're part way through season 3 now). And I even got some knitting done.

Now we see how my body reacts to all these drugs, I've heard the next few days can be a ride for sure.

Oh and before I forget, I went public with my diagnosis on the old social medias yesterday, and the steady stream of kindness, love and well wishes all day where a massive lift to my spirits and really did make the day a wonderfully special one. Thanks ever so much to everyone who liked a post, left me a comment or sent me a DM. It really means the world.


Saturday 29 April 2023

I start chemotherapy today. So here's all the questions running through my brain in the middle of the night.

It's 3:44 in the morning, I can't get back to sleep. So many things racing in and through my mind.

I start Chemotherapy today. 

Two months ago I would have never believed this was where I'd be today or that this was how I'd be spending my summer.

Two months ago I was a happy, healthy 35 year old, focused I prioritizing my goals, my self and my family.

But not because I had to, in order to have the best possible outcome for my cancer treatment.

And I certainly was up in the middle of the night reading into Canada's decision not to recommend funding for pertuzumab. I drug which up until a few hours ago I thought I'd be receiving tomorrow as part of my treatment. But now looks like it may be an out of pocket expensive that could run mightily close to $100 000 grand.

And how much would the addition or absence of this drug make a difference to my outcomes (I mean Canada decided not much, or not enough to be worth the funding)?

And what hail Marys would perhaps some external funding organizations combined with hopefully some good soul at our insurance company, would be pulled off on my behalf?

And why shouldn't I just be sleeping right now, rather than reliving my gradschool days combing though pubmed?

And don't I need to be well rested for my still very long day of TCH chemo tomorrow?

And am I a little hungry? Maybe dinner was too early tonight?

And where did I put my yeti full of water? I'm supposed to be hydrating.

Anyways, I dyed my hair blue, because it's all going to fall out anyways.

I'll write again after chemo...and maybe YouTube.

Speaking of which, today I tell my social media people's about my cancer. I'll link that video here when it goes live.

Off to maybe eat, maybe get some knitting packed and maybe sleep a little bit more.