Sleep Through This

Day 1:

My friend Lesley took me to my first chemo. It took forever for the pre-party to finish. The pre-party consists of them accessing your port, waiting for blood results to make sure you are fit for chemo, then drips of 2 anti-nausea meds, a bag of roids and a bag of Ativan which is an anti-anxiety. I had to ask for this one, which I found annoying because I made my desire for anti-anxieties very clear. This whole thing took at least 2.5 hours. Then they pushed the red devil and then Cytoxten. I read somewhere to eat frozen grapes during infusion to avoid mouth sores. Now I hate grapes. The thought of a grape is vomit inducing.

Afterward at home; too tired even move my lips. Like Jello descended on my bed. Things taste wrong. No appetite. Stomach in knots. Scared it’s already in my system and there are no take backs.

Day 2:

Cotton mouth like you wouldn’t believe. Can barely eat a bagel and cream cheese. No available working saliva to aid in this situation. My tastebuds are already wrecked. I am on a lot of meds to help avoid nausea. They are working, but I still have that low-level hangover feeling that unfortunately will not go away with a good vom-sesh. Did I mention all the pre-meds constipate you? We are still waiting on a clearing of the bowels…

I feel best when I am asleep. So far no fevers.

Also on day 2 I had to go back to the cancer center for IV hydration therapy and the Neulasta shot. Hydration therapy is just being hooked up via your port to a standard Sodium Chloride bag of fluids. This, and most chemos, are terribly dehydrating. I have been drinking a lot of water, but getting the internal bolus helps a lot.

The Neulasta shot- WHOOOAA Bessie. I know from experience Uno that it is simply fucking terrible. The shot itself, who cares. It is the effects. Its job is to rapidly produce the white blood cells chemo robs you of. The drug heads to the nearest, largest bones, finds the marrow and starts throwing a Studio 54 party of cell production that hurts like a MFer. I got my shot in my upper arm so my sternum and ribs will take the blow. It is like growing pains x1000. I asked my onc if I could not do the shot, and just wait and see if I need it at my next blood draw. I got a hard no.

I am anticipating a bad night. I hope I am wrong.

Days 3 & 4

Day 3 had some decent moments. I went to 2 labs to get cardiac markers drawn. They were both so busy. At the second I pulled the cancer card and simply said, I had chemo 2 days ago and am not doing well, please help me. They did. I was able to eat some soup and even a piece of pizza.

Woke up today, day 4 and I feel the worst I’ve felt. Nausea to the point where the idea of someone gently sitting on the bed is terrifying. I’ve been to the bathroom and that’s it. Sitting on the toilet shaking and wondering how I will get back to the bed.

My face has started to swell from the steroids. It is also red like a light sunburn. My ribs hurt when I take a deep breath from the Neulasta shot. Headaches, foggy brain.

If I could have one wish, it would be to sleep through this whole thing. No one should have to be conscious for this. What’s the point? I would pay out of pocket for someone to place me in a sleep-like state and keep me there.

I realize this post will be horrifying, but I know many are waiting to hear how I am and I can’t lie. I hope to feel decent in a few more days. It’s hard to imagine, but docs and friends who have been through this claim it will happen.

On my behalf, I challenge you to use your able minds and bodies to deliver kindness to others. In any form you can. Just make someone else smile today.

16 Comments Add yours

  1. Maureen says:

    Challenge accepted. I will spread kindness with you in mind. Thank you for sharing your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Amanda says:

    Having been through this too, I know how horrible it is first hand. Neulasta shots are a special form of torture, aren’t they? Did you take Claritan to help with the resulting bone pain? I know it helped me. Didn’t take the pain away entirely but made a noticeable dent in it.
    I’m a stranger to you, but I’m reading your updates and thinking of you and remembering vividly how utterly shitty treatment life is. Hang in there.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Doris Bergman says:

    So so sorry you’re going through this…your writing chops haven’t left you though! Your are strength!

    Like

  4. Kelly glauberman. says:

    I did a good deed for a stranger the other day — not really worth explaining, but the receiver of my feed asked me, “why would you do something like that for someone you don’t know?”

    The true answer was, bee cause I had cancer. And I had to go through horrible things. And so to see someone happy, to make someone happy, in some small part dulls the pain I felt.

    I know you will get this. And with all my heart I hope your pain is dulled. And that Neulasta is a fucker.

    Like

  5. Mom says:

    Your Mommy loves you! I can’t drive to help you and this isn’t fair for either of us, but I know you have so many supporters. 💖🌠

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Elizabeth Moran says:

    I love you, Grace. If I could take this pain from you, I would. I hope it gets more tolerable soon

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sheila Roche says:

    Thank you for the update. I am so sorry that your AC treatments are causing you so much discomfort. I had Taxol/Carboplatin for 12 weeks prior to my AC. My oncologist said I was in training for AC. When I did start the AC the Neulasta I received was from a time released patch. I felt no bone or joint aches, so I can’t relate. I am flying out of Denver today and am doing my best to spread any kind of kindness with you in mind.
    I was able to have my last AC treatment reduced by 20% because my breast MRI showed a complete response. Although later pathology showed some residual cancer cells. I am on Xeloda now which is very tolerable. Wishing you the best each day. I also renamed my AC Chemo to the Red Angel…..Angels soaring through my veins to kick cancers ass…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mygrancerblog says:

      Red angel… I ‘ll try it…

      Like

  8. Anonymous says:

    Sleep is the best. Just wake you when it is over. Hope you find something tolerable to eat and have as much sleep as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Louise says:

    Eight years post-treatment and I feel for you. Wishing you a quicker recovery. I felt worse on my first few chemos than I did later even though the doc suggested it would be opposite. Wishing you the same luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mygrancerblog says:

      I hope this first one was the worst!!

      Like

  10. Anonymous says:

    Days 4-5 are the worst so it’s gonna get better. Left u a FB mssg with some mouth-helping ideas. Thinking of you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mygrancerblog says:

      Thank you!

      Like

  11. linda r hitmar says:

    With all that you’re going through, it’s a miracle and a blessing that you are reminding others to be kind. I’m sending you vibes of compassion…

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Lauren says:

    Grace – you do not know me but your blog got me through my own cancer journey when I was diagnosed in 2019 at 39. For some strange reason I clicked on it tonight it was saved to my favorites and learned of your totally unfair news. I am just so so darn sorry.
    I went through 16 rounds of chemo – a/c red devil then taxol before my double mastectomy along with 1 year or herceptin & perjeta and I am now on year 2 of taxol. I can’t imagine having to go through it all again. Please know you will be in my thoughts and prayers as you continue your treatment and kick cancers ass. I have sent your blog to other young women battling breast cancer bc you are an inspiration. As a side note i went to UC Boulder as well Go buffs – I am a terrible writer but wanted to let you know how much your words have meant to me and so many others. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mygrancerblog says:

      Hello! Go Buffs for sure. When were you there?

      Like

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