Pressing on

Not writing is usually indicative of a rut or internal conflict. Truthfully, I haven’t had much to say.

I am realizing that a common misconception is that I am done with treatment since my hair is growing back. I wish that were the case. Despite the oddity of my hair growing in spite of Taxol (the drug that makes it jump ship) I have still had weekly chemotherapy infusions every Friday.

(and if you look closely you’ll see that I have a total of FOUR eyelashes on my left eye only and pretty much no eyebrows to speak of)

“When are you scheduled to finish?”…

giphy

^my reply.

I toggle frequently between frustration and acceptance that second line chemo for recurrent metastatic cancer is not at all like first line treatment. (I should add a disclaimer that my breakdown below is based entirely on my own experience. This may not be true for all cancers/patients)

  • First line treatment – highly aggressive with the primary aim of cure.
    • Ex: Surgeries/de-bulking, Intraperitoneal Chemo given in high dosages in fewer rounds, etc.
  • Second line treatment – less aggressive up front with a stronger focus on quality of life and stabilizing disease.*
    • Ex: Smaller dosages of chemo given over a longer/sometimes undetermined amount of time
      • *Let me be clear that this does not mean that everyone has jumped ship from the idea of cure (I sure haven’t because goddamn it I’m persistent). That would be anyone’s ultimate hope but given the resistant nature of this disease treatment is focused on providing the best life possible.

So for anyone wondering-

Yes I’m still plugging away every Friday with chemo infusions. No, there is no end date. Yes, my favorite color is purple. No, Ryan Gosling, I cannot be your date to the Golden Globes but I’m flattered.

This morning I met with Dr. Robison to check in and do a chemo exam.

My CA-125 has increased again to 785 (up around 100 or so from last time). My inclination is that this number is influenced by the infection in my nails that I’ve been trying to fend off, a result of Taxol.

As Sheila so perfectly phrased it: “Well your numbers definitely do spike when your nails get all gooey”

For real, my nails are a disaster. Oozy, discolored, gross. I hope the ladies at Metronails didn’t think I forgot about them. Manicures/Pedicures just aren’t safe right now.

Dr. Robison ordered a CT scan for January 8th to rule out disease progression. In my gut I really don’t think I have disease progression but I’m happy that we’ll have a looksie to be sure.

We also discussed and agreed upon switching up the treatment schedule slightly to ease up on my body a bit.

This is my current treatment schedule:

Week #1- Taxol & Avastin

Week #2- Taxol only

Week #3- Taxol only

Lather, rinse, repeat the following week.

Now we are moving to a 4 week cycle schedule:

Week #1- Taxol & Avastin

Week #2- Taxol only

Week #3- Taxol only

Week #4- NO TREATMENT

That’s right party people, a mini-chemocation every 4 weeks.

original-2

That’s all I have to report for now but I will certainly be posting the results of the CT scan in January when I know more.

I hope that everyone enjoys a safe and stress-free holiday season. I’m pulling my cancer card to mandate that you all take time to be kind to yourselves and watch a marathon of: Home Alone, Elf, and Christmas Vacation.

national-lampoons-christmas

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7 thoughts on “Pressing on

  1. Well your dialogue on cancer and your treatment gives us all a better appreciation of what most of us don’t know ~ the dirty details. You continue to impress me in all areas. Mere mortals could not think of sharing the details and most certainly could not go through it the process as honorably as you have. I bow to you and your continued courage! Of course you will persist because that’s who you are. Please do have a blessed holiday season and the best New Year’s celebration your treatments will allow! We will look forward to hearing how it’s going in January. Sending love and hugs ~ and continued prayers xoxo

  2. You are a true fighter and continue to be as positive as a person can possibly be and You continue to be an inspiration to all. Life does suck sometimes and it is very difficult to understand just ask me. With friends and family who support us some how some way we fight through it. I will continue to keep you in my thoughts and prayers. Happy holidays and continue to stay strong.

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