Week 9, recovery week after 5th chemo.
I feel tired. Tired and in pain this past week. I’ve started my new chemo drug Taxol. This will be the drug of choice for the remaining 3 treatments. The symptoms are different, maybe somewhat better, maybe not. I have pain throughout my body now. It’s more than an ache and less than terrible. It feels just like fibromyalgia pain did. All over and intense at time. The nausea is less than with the A/C drugs, but still enough to need meds. The big bonus is not having to take steroid pills for 3-5 days after the treatment. They give it to me in the cocktail but it didn’t make me totally crazy this time. Semi-crazy. Lots of tears. Lot of fatigue. Lots of pain. Unfortunately, the first level of treatment for pain, beyond over the counter drugs that do not help, are steroids. No! The mouth sores that kept me from eating or drinking regularly last week are healing after antibiotics. They caused the worse pain I’ve had so far. It hurt to talk, drink water and forget eating without numbing my entire mouth. I’m on day 7 now and have not been able to work more than a couple of hours. No energy, no stability (I fell down the stairs last night, but did not get hurt). I’m having my suddenly-low blood pressure checked out tomorrow and have more IV fluids scheduled. That may be another new piece of my treatment. Twice a week it’s back to the clinic for 2 hours of fluids just to stay hydrated so I can recovery in time for the next treatment. Not the most fun I’ve had… Not the worst time I’ve had – but close.
The photo below is of one week’s worth of medication and supplements. I feel like I eat in order to take these pills every few hours. The boxes do not include the 2 additional nausea medications I take every 6 and 8 hours, nor the various powders and potions from the naturopath that I mix into water. I’m hoping to cut back the nausea medication with this new round of Taxol. So far, it’s better than the A/C treatments! Good news.
FYI- You may have your own opinion on taking so many pills and what you would do instead. That’s great. I’m not interested in ranting emails about miracle cures and diets, however. I’ll write a very funny post on the crazy, although well-intended, things strangers have sent me in the name of ‘curing my cancer.” People who say, “If you’re serious about curing your cancer….” as if I’m not already. This photo is simply to show you what I’m actually doing. It’s my choice to follow both my MD and ND recommendations in addition to a specific diet and exercise program. I have faith they will work, but as with any cancer treatment, no one really knows. There is no cure for breast cancer. There is remission. There is not seeing cancer cells too small to detect and calling it cured. There is living the rest of your life in remission, living with breast cancer, and there is death from breast cancer. One of these will be my path. In the meantime, I do what I think is best and learn as I go.