I just watched Dateline with Suzanne Sommers and her controversial book about alternative treatment of cancer. I just don’t know how I feel about this, the Physician performing the alternative treatments, her-Suzanne or the fact that I listened to all that about people dying that get cancer. It is probably the most horrific thing you can hear when you get those 3 words of your diagnosis. I don’t know if I can explain it. For me, it was as if somebody was playing a really bad bad joke on me and also, I immediately, zoned out and it was not me that was receiving this news. I remember crying…sobbing….feeling like I had been just slapped in the face really really hard and at the same time I became numb. No no no, this is not me that is hearing this, it must be the woman in the next room, somebody had made a really bad mistake. I also remember thinking, Oh My God, I’m going to lose my hair and my breasts too…I never once thought.. Oh My God, I’m going to DIE….. Don’t know why I went off on that again…since I now don’t have cancer anymore my treatments are working. And I intended that the tumors have disappeared and I’m on the road to recovery.
This last treatment was fast and generally painless and after the steroids wore off, I went down a little. But it was also the same time as the coldest week in the world and I could not get warm. My core was cold, which is one of the many many side-effects of chemo….I finally went and bought an electric blanket and slept under that along with lots of clothes, double hats, gloves one night, socks my robe, tights under my pj’s and wore most of this for a couple of days. Our heating in this old house is pretty much non-existent. We have a huge old gas heater in the living room and electric space heater in bathroom and my oil electric heater burned out two of the plugs in my bedroom and shot fire out of one of them..so all I had was blankets and the electric one after I bought it. I did survive but will not live in this apartment for another winter, two was enough for me.
But a new side-effect has popped up, my fingernails and toenails are being adversely affected. First I noticed a red moon shape on my nail beds, it got worse and worse everyday and started turning brown and splotchy. Then my joints got red and stiff and the pain in my nails was getting to me. My physician said they will proably fall off and I had to watch to see if anything was oozing from underneath…well, wouldn’t I notice that pretty quick? I will need to be on antibodics…. I am aware every waking moment that my fingers are hurting. Like when I wake up first thing in the morning, I remember I am compromised and my nails hurt and my hands. I had to cut my nails off short so I didn’t anciently catch one of them and tear them off. They also have became white, lined and very thin like the rest of my skin on my body…thin and dry as a desert, I feel so fragile all over and those that know me know that I’m a rough and tough, I don’t need any help with that kinda woman...I can’t do shit anymore. Then just walking from my car to the inside of the grocery became a huge chore. I lose my breath and my heart palpitates so much the first couple of times I thought I was having a heart attack . My physician told me I had become anemic from the chemo and there was nothing she could give to me. I live upstairs and often I would have to pull myself up by the rail to get to the door…and resting does not seem to help. I have on many occasions gone out to do my favorite thing, DANCE and pretty much realized that if I did, I might not make it off the dance floor walking but in an ambulance to the nearest emergency room. This is cramping my style folks…just pissing me off…and I have two more treatments to go….then off to the next part if I still need it…since my tumor has shrunk or is non-existent…that is what WE are saying and intending…no negativity here, ok…you align with me on this…say YES, Sam I align with you…..you are healthy and vibrant. And when I said to my surgeon, she thought I was delusional, said I was hallucinating, told a physiologist, just because I was being positive in my treatment. I guess they are more use to doom and gloom at MDA! WHATEVER, I said…
But today, I feel stronger, my nails still hurt and it prevents me from opening a lot of things, like my zipper on my jeans, Tupperware, anything that I have to normally use my nails or fingers for and you do not realize until you lose the use of them how much you do use them….But I have not lost my breath today or yesterday and feel much better just today…just in time for the next chemo, #5..on Feb. 28, 2011
See ya back soon as the woman I was and a better version of me any day now.