Summertime Treatment & Sad Farewells

I hope that everyone had a safe and lively 4th of July weekend. From what I have gathered from social media, sun was soaked in, food was consumed, fireworks were constant, and everyone’s dogs lost their shit. I have spent the past few days on the Cape with my parents, other people’s parents, and in some cases other’s grandparents. Needless to say it has been pretty quiet and relaxing which is just what I need right now after a trying few weeks.

I am disappointed to share that I made the tough decision to rehome Josie. Although I anticipated the challenges of dog parenthood, there are several factors that contributed to it being an overwhelming experience (none of which had to do with her personality, she was great). This is a decision that I did not take lightly, especially because we really bonded. Perhaps under different circumstances I would have been able to manage better but I have to be authentic here and be honest that this was too much. I need to both take care of myself and do right by Josie. She was with a wonderful foster family over the weekend and they were kind enough to send me pictures of her happily romping around with their other dogs the very next day. I have also heard from her new adoptive parents and they are lovely. Josie took to them right away when she met them. Bottom line, I am happy that Josie is loved and safe even if it was not in my home.

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I’ll be a puppy mama again someday but not just yet…

After leaving Josie it was good timing for a small vacation to stay with my parents on the Cape. We had a great time relaxing, reading, coloring (yup, adult coloring books), live jazz/blues and catching up with family friends. We enjoyed panoramic views of fireworks on the beach in Sandwich on the 4th. We also gorged ourselves with delicious BBQ and seafood. We celebrated part one of mama’s birthday last night with great dinner and our favorite, Pirate’s Cove (never too old). All in all I feel much more refreshed and ready to return to work tomorrow.

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How cute are they?! ^

Treatment:

Due to the holiday, the infusion center was closed on Friday so chemo was pushed up one day. I was expecting it to be insanely busy to compensate for the closure but luckily I was still able to get in on time AND somehow get a room with a bed. I was honestly expecting a folding chair in the lobby. I think someone must be bribing the infusion center staff to ensure these accommodations for me because I cannot fathom how lucky I have gotten to have a private room with a bed for every infusion except for one. Nothing is better than being able to shut off the light, snuggle up, and pass out while you pump your veins fulla’ poison.

Side effects:

Fatigue is at an all time high for this treatment. It is really catching up with me as my energy levels aren’t quite bouncing back as quickly as weeks prior. The treatment of Avastin and Taxol really packs more of a punch when it comes to draining energy and I found it tough to get out of bed post infusion last week. I think I came home and slept for at least 3 more hours. I can still function but I’m increasingly sluggish at the moment.

Hand rash has pretty much turned the back of my hands into dinosaur skin. I hope it doesn’t look and feel like this permanently because it’s not pretty. I’ve been using a lot of Aveno, Lubriderm, and prescription hydrocortisone cream to soothe the itch and inflammation and to keep the skin moisturized. This rash is highly sensitive to the sun so no daytime beach trips on the Cape for this girl (don’t worry I’ve subbed that for sunset visits on the beach instead).

Sore fingertips are still a thing, a real complaint. I trimmed my nails down yesterday which has taken some of the pressure off but it is becoming increasingly challenging to perform certain functions such as fastening buttons and clasps or opening containers. My nails are becoming more brittle and I have noticed that the nailbeds are changing in color to a dark red/purple. Some are worse than others. I relieve the inflammation by running my finger tips under cold water. I’m not sure what else I can do besides that and keeping them clean (to avoid bacteria and infection). My mom encouraged me to look into homeopathic remedies but I haven’t hammered down anything yet. Luckily my nails haven’t lifted yet so fingers crossed they don’t and at worst stay sore.

Hair loss– Yep, still balding. Holding on tight. Headbands and wraps are helping to hide the top a bit for now. I honestly don’t know what I want to do yet. Shave and be done with it or ride it out and see what happens? A significant amount of hair has fallen out of the top but at a much slower rate than before making this decision interesting. The jury is still out.

The news you have been waiting for:

My CA-125 results are in, actually I’ve had them for quite a few days, I’ve just been on radio silence on the blog front.

The CA-125 blood test showed a drop from 1184 to 812! We’re in triple digits! As I always say there is still a long way to go but at least we are seeing progress. This is very encouraging for me indeed.

On that note, I hope that everyone is enjoying their summer thus far. Stay tuned for more test results and summer adventures (does binge watching Seinfeld on Hulu count?)

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14 thoughts on “Summertime Treatment & Sad Farewells

  1. Hang in there and don’t beat yourself up for trying so hard to give a home to you pup. He’ll be happy with his new friends and you can always visit and yes one day try again. Watch the end of the tunnel… keep the faith and we’re still hanging with you here. That’s great. Love and hugs.

  2. Wonderful news on the CA-125 number, Jess! I know that giving Josie up had to be so hard and I am so happy that her new owners have shared how she is doing so that you can feel a tiny bit better about it! Call me crazy but I think she would understand.

  3. Doing a Happy dance for you Jess……so wonderful that the numbers keep going down. Hooray!! As for having to give up Josie, sorry you had to do that. But I know Josie and everyone else would agree that you did the very best you could for her as well as for you by realizing you couldn’t care for her properly at this time in your life. And that is OK. Josie will be fine and you can concentrate on keeping on crushing those numbers. Carry on Jess, your doing GREAT! Sending good vibes to you always….Love and Hugs to You too.

  4. We built some some wonderful memories here this weekend. Thank you for everything…but mostly , thank you for being our daughter. You are amazing and we LOVE you.❤️

  5. God Bless you, sweet Jessie…You did the right thing……Puppies are a challenge – even when you are ,supposedly, at your best… Much lover to you and your family from your WAY BACK teacher and friend……..<3

  6. Jess….. You are truly an inspiration to all…. I am always in awe when I read your posts…..being an insane dog person, I am so grateful for the joy you brought each other and the self awareness and thoughtfulness you have to have re homed her as quickly as you did. You are an amazing woman

  7. Awesome triple digit! Josie looked happy in the pic. You have so much love to give and you showed that love by recognizing that right now you need to focus on yourself and crushing cancer. Sounds like you’re well on your way to that! Congrats!

  8. great numbers jess!!!!@$&!
    sorry about fatigue and finger pain and hopefully that will ease.
    good for you to find josie a nice new home with good memories.
    all healing thoughts and prayers and laughter continue !
    love deborah

  9. Jess-sometimes it takes just as much courage to recognize you are “enough”- in your case more than enough -at any given moment. Sometimes we have to trust that inner voice and know that all is well . Maybe people or “pets” come into our lives to stay for awhile or just long enough to move us forward . Let everything nourish you right now and try to let go of the rest – be proud of finding your own “truth”. “No one else can do it for you-the rest is still unwritten”…
    ( your mom sent me these Lyrics when I needed to hear them). You are enough Jess! You gave Josie hope and a new family-I think she gave you more than you know. Congrats on all your hard work to get those numbers down!!! Taxol is a huge challenge but together you are getting the job done!💚💙Love Mary

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