Well, it has been too long since I last updated, but honestly I've just been sick of cancer and haven't felt like writing about it. I do, however have lots to share.
I have complete treatment number 9 of 12! Only 3 more to go and I am DONE with chemo! Looking forward to that very last day more than you can imagine! Cannot wait to ring that bell at FCS!
After treatment number 8 I had PET and CT scans done. They were GREAT! All of the lymph nodes that showed active cancer in my first scans have shrunk in size, the tumor in my left lung is completely GONE and the PET scan did not show active cancer ANYWHERE! Nothing lit up! The chemo is working it's magic! This was amazing news. It was so stressful going through all of these treatments having no idea whether or not the chemo was working and killing the cancer. I feel so relieved to know that it indeed is working like they expected. I now feel like, "I CAN DO THIS," and am a little rejuvenated mentally by this news. Cancer is not only hard on the body, it's hard on the mind as well. While I have tried hard not to let it get the best of me or really show the world how scary it has been, it has weighted on my mind every second of every day. I have lived in fear that I would have these scans done and the cancer would still be there and I would be looking at "now what?" I am very aware of how fortunate I am to have these results...I am very aware that I am fortunate to be able to start looking at life after cancer.
Lung damage...the pulmonologist says the scans show no permanent damage, just inflammation in the right lung. We have opted to leave it alone for now with the hopes that it will heal as my body gets stronger. I will have pulmonary function tests and scans repeated once I finish chemo. More good news!
Side effects are the same, tired beyond belief and weak. Hot flashes SUCK...to all my girlfriends out there, GET READY! Hot flash is not an adequate name...I have seen every hour around the clock for almost a month because I wake up sweating every 60-90 minutes. I could literally wring out my clothes. They happen around the clock awake or asleep and I will say it again, THEY SUCK!
We have had some visitors. Randy came to visit Mark and help us celebrate his 45th birthday! They guys had a fun weekend of golf and beer and as a bonus they took Lucas to his first Cubs game! They went to see the Cubs play Miami and had a great time. It was good to see him and we all wish he would visit more often!
My dear friend Jacki also came to visit. It was fabulous to spend time with her and just hang out and be normal. We shopped, went out for lunch and enjoyed a little bit of time outside next to the water enjoying a couple of frozen cocktails. It means the world to me that she came to spend some time with me! The best thing about "old" friends is that you don't have to pretend...they just know and it's okay to just be yourself. We got to celebrate my good news as it came just before she arrived. I'm hoping she and her family will all come on a trip soon when I am healthy and we can have even more fun!
The last months have been quite the journey for me. I have learned a lot about myself as well as other people. I am always amazed at the stories shared with me about how cancer has affected people or their friends and family. I'm realizing that I won't come out of this the same person that I was before this diagnosis. Hopefully, I'm coming out of this a better, stronger person. I can say that before this I thought having cancer would be just horrible...and it is, BUT I've come through it better than I could have ever imagined. Previously I would have thought it would break me, send me to bed to never come out, but I have managed to stay strong, maintain as normal a life as possible, go to work, etc. If I can do this, survive THIS...I'm thinking I can do just about anything!