Thursday, January 18, 2018

First Chemo

I made it through my first chemo with no allergic reactions!

Jamie and I got to MD Anderson Sugar Land at 8:00 this morning. I had planned my outfit carefully and wore soft leggings, a button-down shirt (for easy port access), and soft Toms boots that I could slip off and on easily. Jamie carried the chemo bag full of supplies and a cooler containing the ice socks and ice mitts (that I'll use to hopefully ward off neuropathy and keep my nails attached.)

Blood was drawn first, this time through my arm since the port was still covered from surgery on Tuesday; in the future they'll use the port. Blood will be drawn before chemo every time to check my counts to be sure I'm healthy enough for the infusion. 

After the blood draw, a nurse removed the dressing from the port and applied numbing cream (something I'll do at home in the future), and my vitals were taken.

My skin doesn't like adhesives.  My face reflects that.

Shortly after, we were shown to my chemo room for the morning.

It hurt when the nurse accessed the port for the first time. I don't know how much of the pain was soreness from the newness of the port and how much was normal port access pain.  Jamie popped a hard candy (corn-free and yummy!) in my mouth to mask the awful taste & smell from the saline flush of the port, and then the nurse started the pre-meds - Benadryl, Pepcid, and a steroid. 

I was all cozy with the OU blanket the kids made me and Dr Who on my Kindle while the pre-meds ran. Right before the chemo infusion started, Jamie got out the ice socks and mitts. I added a hat and a scarf to my ensemble and got iced up. And the socks hurt. The mitts weren't too bad, but the socks were painful.  I felt like my toes were going to fall off.  I left the socks on for about 15 minutes before needing a break. They went back on after a 5 minute (and bathroom trip accompanied by IV pole) break, and were more tolerable then since they were less frozen.

The chemo itself was okay. It took about an hour and then we were suddenly packing up and heading home. I was already feeling very, very tired, but otherwise okay.

We left the hospital around 11:30am. It's 5:30pm now, and I'm feeling flu-like. Very tired, a little dizzy, and achy. My heart has felt a little fast (but not bad), and my throat/nose/sinuses are incredibly dry. My skin is also already drying out, so I need to stay on top of that.  I'm told the side effects will build with each chemo treatment, but at least week 1, day 1 is tolerable so far!

The mitts have ice packs over the fingers, and the socks have ice packs over the toes.


Mindy said...

How on earth do you manage to look so adorable, even going through this yucky stuff?!

You’re in our prayers every day, and the Lord woke me up early today to pray for you. It’s so good to know that he’s with you and that you have a loving family to support you. Love and prayers from faraway Oregon!

APB said...

I love that you keep your sense of humor during this hard time (reference to Helga). You seem in good spirits despite the port and the first treatment! I love your blanket, hat and scarfs, you look super cute! Thinking of you! Get some good rest and hope the flu like symptoms will go away soon so you can have a few days of feeling like yourself! Big hugs! Annie

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