Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Hope Hope Hooray!

At long last, enough time has lapsed for my medical team to be confident in the good blood counts that I've had since chemotherapy and the ongoing cancer treatments. They also realize I've been suffering with chronic debilitating symptoms for just as long. And, we've engaged other specialists and additional tests, eliminating the possibility of other causes.

So when last week's brain MRI came back normal, we focused our attention to the one probable cause of my debilitation - side effects of the treatment I'm receiving. The drugs are killing the cancer, which keeps trying to advance, but the crazy side effects are also debilitating me...leaving me incapacitated...ill...drained...

But, as a good friend said, I received the gift of hope.

As I was describing my symptoms, the bone pain, the muscle aches, the head pain, my oncologist looked at me and said..."You've had 3 of four treatments this time, right?" I nodded.  "Just don't come next week," he said, much to my surprise.

Was that an option? I knew we were going to consider that next year....but already? Yay!

I stopped talking mid-sentence and stared at him.

He suggested we end this round of treatments and, as long as my blood counts continue to look good, we try lesser doses of the drug.  Balance is what we're looking for...balance between the ugly side effects and the successful effectiveness of the treatments.

"I'm pumped," he said. "I think this will work."

Me too. I was thrilled.

"I feel like I'm jumping off the end of a high dive," I said, "but I'm willing to do that!"

The excitement wore off fast. I guess I thought I'd skip out of there feeling fine. I skipped out of there, but here I am, actually a couple of weeks later...not feeling so fine. I'm sinking.

Why did I think I'd be much better this week? Will I ever feel 'normal' again? Even in the best of days, I never have had one normal day yet. I've had some pumps of life here and there. Very unpredictable. Very random. Very rare.

And now I thought just because I missed one treatment, I'd be fine. Quickly. But that's not so.

I guess I forgot these powerful drugs work in your system for months...they build...most days are so debilitating still, although some days are better than others..

I'm still struggling through...but one thing's for sure: I'm struggling...with the gift of hope.

Gotta share a song! This is one of my favorites...Click here to listen to "One Thing Remains" 

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