Yesterday, Jeff had to work, so he dropped me off around 7:45 at the hospital. I felt like a lamb off to the slaughter. Ok...I am exaggerating a little, but I was filled with emotions that I didn't expect when he drove away. The anxiety that I felt with some of the unknowns from last week were replaced with...."holy crap, I can't believe that I am here again, and I so don't want to be!" I know what I am in for this week and am praying that it is easier than last. Walking into the cancer center is hard. (Not the walking part...I always take the stairs because it makes me feel like a rebel....just the emotional part!) I know that no one wants to be there, but I feel so out of place. I am younger by decades then everyone there and feel like I am on parade. My Oncologist walked in to the office, just as I found my seat and asked how my week went and I broke down. I was surprised that I my emotions snuck up on my like that. I was not prepared to have to deal with them, and in the waiting room of all places. Not that my week was all that horrible, I literally had just 3 days that were hard and less than pleasant, but because I was back in the office, gearing up to receive more treatment when I want to be home and in control of my life, enjoying the summer that is quickly passing before our eyes, with my kids.
I grabbed a box of tissues, sucked it up, and tried not to show my ugly cry face. The nurse quickly took me back to access and flush my port, and then to draw blood for the Dr. When I finally met with her, I did more crying and verbal diarrhea-ing. She was so great at listening and being supportive... and then she sicked the cancer center's psychiatrist on me, which made me cry some more. I told a friend that at that moment I wanted to moon the Dr but I remembered how many times I have had to show my butt to people (medical people, let me clarify) and then quickly changed my mind. I also had a handful of wet tissues that would slow down the process. I have an appointment next week and am hoping I don't cancel it! :)
Around 9:30 I went back to the Chemotherapy suites, chose a comfy bed, because that favorite sunny room that I had last week, was already taken by a cute little grandma with a snazzy wig. My mom arrived shortly after I started, which was a welcome, comforting and happy sight. She drove up from Twin Falls and will stay with us for a few days holding down the fort. I love having her here and am so thankful for her sacrifice. She eases a lot of stress for me and Jeff....and the children of course love having here here too. I don't know what I would do without her! To pass the time, we chatted and worked on hand binding some quilts that we have both had done for quite some time. It felt good to accomplish something while we waited.
The nurses at the cancer center are awesome and spare no expense at caring for your every need....whey wait me hand and foot. For the first few hours I had a few of them keep my ice water filled to the brim. I enjoyed it clear up until the time that Oxalyplatin kicked in...and then they brought me warm water. They treat you to endless supply of warm blankets and wait patiently while you choose the "yummy" hospital lunch that is delivered shortly after noon. I chose some rice with an Asian type of chicken and vegetables. It was the only thing on the menu that didn't make me want to vomit...and I must say that it wasn't too shabby.
I keep them hopping with quite a large collection of cocktails in hanging IV bags. When one or two finish dripping their cancer fighting magic, they replace them with the next scheduled concoction. My favorite nurse did me the honor of disposing of each empty IV bag, in the proper trash receptacle with spirit and gusto! I made her throw them hard into the trash...and for some strange reason it was freeing and felt amazing!
One of the cute receptionists brought me in this cute mug. It says "Cancer Ain't For Sissy's". (I think it was because she witnessed the hideous waiting room melt down...but none the less I love it and it brightened my day. I will use it to warm up my drinks and remember that I am tougher than I sometimes feel!)
|Cancer isn't for sissies!|
We were finished around 2:30, earlier than last week. As we walked out of the hospital, we walked by all of the handi-capped parking. I always walk by there fast, feeling happy that I am not begging for one of those. My kids however are begging for me to get one of those because they are lazy.....and the weather is hot. Out came this lady and a little umbrella stroller. As she walked/shuffled toward us, we noticed that she did not have a baby in that stroller, but a little fat dog. Mom and I got the giggles. I told her that I should have saved our baby stuff, so that when she gets older she can put it to good use with a cute little pampered, fat, lap dog.
We drove home to happy children that were being loved and taken care of by my Aunt Charlotte and Uncle Lew, who live in town. We are so lucky to have them close. Our children adore them. Walker is at scout camp this week so Charlotte spent the morning in the kitchen chatting with Whitney and teaching her some great cooking secrets. She brought over her pannini maker and had a delicious late lunch waiting for us. They really enjoy each others company. Lew has another hole is his wallet from a trip to the gas station with the younger boys. He patiently waited 20 minutes for the boys to decide and re-decide what treats (and yes that is plural) they wanted to schmooze Lew into purchasing for them. They owe him some serious weed pulling around his yard. I think Lew was relieved that Wes, the 5 year old, didn't introduce him to the gas station attendant. Last time there were some awkward moments as Wes introduced Lew as his uncle, and proceeded to tell that he was taking care of him because his mom has cancer. We have laughed and laughed about the poor attendants face....Lew gives a great impression. What the heck do you say to that? I am relieved that the our children seem to be happy and doing well with this whole process. We have had lots of help, and for that we are so grateful.
Later in the afternoon Mom and Charlotte took me to the fabric store for a little therapy. We will be working on some fun projects this week that will be therapeutic.
I am so happy to have Round #2 crossed off my list. We won't go into how many I have left......I am just focusing on what I have accomplished! I have been reunited with that hideous fanny pack as well as cold sensitivity in my hands and throat. I am anxious to go back on Wednesday for my disconnect and am hoping that neuropathy will be temporary like last week. After about 6 days I was able to enjoy cold drinks and ice, which made a world of difference with this 100 degree weather. And here is to this week......we are determined that it is going to be a good one! :)