Living life with perspective

1a560329b6ffb045b286c8521d85c720-1I’m all ready with my armour on to tackle the next chemo sucker due on the 19th. In many respects I’m not getting as many symptoms on this chemo as with Paclitaxol but with my current stomach problems the next and final 3 hits are going to be a challenge. I’m so glad they are only 3 weekly now and that I get time to recover, unlike before when chemo was every week. I feel much better now and even drove the car! Whee! I am concerned about my concentration on the road. My brain is getting worse and worse. There is so much fog in there I feel like I need a personal assistant. If you see me on the road clear outta the way.

I’m soooo excited about this weekend. All 8 of us (kids and partners) are going away for the weekend and staying in a big house. A house full of noisy extroverts and a boisterous staffy pup named Angus is just what I need ha ha. Marley is staying at home where he will remain calm and not bark all weekend. Hmmm. We are so blessed to have AMAZING next door neighbours who are also very close friends. We only have one house adjoining ours so it’s just as well they are so tolerant of ‘Sir Barkalot’.

This little chapter of my life isn’t all about fighting cancer. It may sound odd but I have gained more positives from having cancer than negatives and my purpose in life feels crystal clear. It’s not about bucket lists and last wishes or a feeling like I am going to die… it’s just about prioritising what’s important. That’s why I am excited about the weekend. Spending time with my amazing family and their partners is going to be wonderful! I just love how they have developed as adults and that they all get along so well. They spend time together even when Col and I are not there which warms my heart. In fact, it was one of the partners who organised the weekend so it’s nice to know they aren’t dragging their heels to come. Us mothers just love harmony in the nest:)

Oh and I managed to run 3k on the treadmill yesterday without throwing up my cookies. The gym team are very grateful I’m sure he he.


Chemo #1 over… 24 weeks to go!

Screenshot 2:04:14 7:54 AMHooray I got through the first chemo session with no adverse reactions so I’m good to go for another 24 weeks! I’ve been randomly selected into the ‘comparative’ group of the clinical trial, which means I’ll be on Paclitaxel (taxol ®)  rather than the new drug Abraxane. Even though I missed out on the Abraxane, the use of Paclitaxel prior to surgery is still a new concept. It’s a highly toxic bomb blast so that ought to do the trick. Unfortunately it is necessary for me to also have cortisone, which wouldn’t have been necessary with the Abraxane drug. Abraxane is also safer, allows higher dosing with shorter infusion duration, and produces higher tumour drug concentration.

No matter! There has been some good success with Abraxane and it’s going to work. I have 16 weekly shots of that and then 8 of the ‘usual’ chemo that everyone else has. THEN surgery and THEN radio therapy. Whew. There’s a long road ahead.

A big thank-you!

I’ve had literally hundreds of emails, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and blog messages and I’m so grateful to have you all praying and/or cheering me along. It really makes a huge difference and I don’t want you to think I don’t appreciate you if I don’t respond to the comments. Thank God I’ve been feeling calm and balanced with a high level of hope and faith that all will be well but I have you all to thank for much of that.

News flash: The MOTH (Man Of The House) sat for 6 hours

We were at Maroondah for 6 hours and he survived the day without going stir crazy!! Hoorah for the MOTH. He is such a tower of strength right now and I don’t know how I would battle along without him by my side.

The 6 hours wasn’t all waiting so that sounds way more miraculous than it really is. He had the mandatory ‘moving of the car to another 2 hour spot’ and we had several appointments before the actual chemo began. The MOTH also exited very quickly when they put the IV into my arm. Big Brave Fireman. It gave all the nurses and other chemo patients a laugh.

The team at the chemo clinic are lovely and very informative. I was sitting opposite a Swinburne staff member who talked her little head off the whole time. WHAT IS IT WITH SWINBURNE and breast cancer??? There are so many of us with it right now or had it recently it’s ridiculous.  She was on her last treatment so that is great for her and I hope she bounces back from it soon.

So… the MOTH was ‘out talked’ by this person sitting opposite us. Miracle! He found someone who could talk under water more than him LOL.

Toilet cleaning duty

Who would have ever thunk it? The LIST of do’s and don’ts with chemo is scary enough but toilet cleaning? Yeesh. Apparently I have to double flush the loo with the lid down and disinfect the toilet bowl every time I use it so that nobody gets infected by chemo drugs. If I’d known I’d have to clean the loo all day I’D HAVE NEVER AGREED TO IT!!! Yeesh.

As well as that, I am not to:

  • go shopping in crowded shops (almost impossible)
  • go to gym when it’s crowded (almost impossible)
  • go in spas (semi difficult)

I have to:

  • take my temperature every morning and call an ambulance if it goes over 38
  • rinse my mouth with salt water 4 times a day
  • Double bag vomit
  • Stay away from people with bugs (almost impossible)

… the list is a mile long and I’m sure you already know it. I’m sure I’ll figure it all out. Hopefully my white cell count won’t go down too much and I can be my usual wild thing self.

Guess what I woke up to yesterday!

So the drama is all happening in the Wood Hood. I was laying in bed yesterday, my big 1st chemo day, thinking ‘it’s strange that I didn’t hear how the boys went on their 4WD trip’. I opened my iPad and saw this photo!!!

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My two sons went on their first 4WD trip with a bunch of mates and their girlfriend and wife. Blake was in the passenger seat of this one. Both he and the driver (who I have known since he was 12 and is a good friend of my 30yo son) got out unscathed. It’s actually very typical of Blake to laugh in the face of danger. He is my super hero. and lands on his feet at the worse possible scenarios of which most of us would never get ourselves into in the first place.

I need some of that right now!!!