Gotta keep on keepin' on.......

Cancer again...that's 3 times in 2 years. This time it’s not breast cancer, but a new one called squamous cell carcinoma. New cancer, same old fighting spirit! My blog is still named for one of many songs that kept me going the first time around. Driving home from an upsetting appointment, I turned on the radio just as this line from Steve Miller Band's Jet Airliner was playing: "I've got to keep on keepin' on"....so I did just that. And I'll do it again.

Monday, February 23, 2009

How's that for normal?

I'm up and fed, all on my own. Woke up around 9am, took my Femara, looked at my awful bedhead in the mirror (I need another haircut!) and threw on my favorite baseball cap. Walked (not crawled) downstairs, put on the tea kettle, poured myself some Cheerios with banana and milk, and ate my breakfast while I read the newspaper.

All.

By.

Myself!

How's that for a normal morning?

I'm so pleased to report that I made it through last week's chemo. It was a little different from the weekly dose, more aches and pains this time, but nothing a little Percocet couldn't handle. Kathy, John's sister, flew in from out west to help us through the week. She was a huge help, running the show just like my parents had over the past few months. (Mom and Dad finally got a break and continued south to Florida, where they are getting some much-needed sun and rest!)

Chemo was Tuesday, and it was a long day. I saw the nurse practitioner at 9:30am, was plugged in around 11:30am, but didn't leave until almost 5pm. Thursday I started to feel a little weak, but our nanny drove us (Kathy, Jesse, and me) to Barnes and Noble to play with the train set and do some birthday present shopping for the girls' friends. We even stopped at a favorite "greasy spoon" for lunch. It was so nice to get out. Friday and Saturday I felt like I had the flu but like I said, it was doable.

So I was thrilled to wake up this morning feeling like I could take care of myself. No calling in my breakfast order. No having to sit down while I sliced my banana. And no sips of warm water after every two bites of food.

Oh, did I mention I can eat again? That is a new development, too. I noticed about a week ago that I no longer needed to wash down every other bite. I celebrated by having some pizza. It was DiGiorno, not delivery, so it wasn't the best, but it was pizza. And then I had some gingerale. Yes, I can now drink carbonated beverages without feeling like I swallowed a dagger. Not that I drink much, just an occasional gingerale or root beer, but it's the principle of it all.

It was horrible, the not eating thing. Just imagine: your doctor tells you to eat anything you want....that's right, ANYTHING YOU WANT....as long as you gain some weight. And then imagine, thanks to (supposedly short-term) effects of radiation, that you can barely swallow a spoonful or two of rice, and even then only if you drink warm water with it. Imagine how cruel that would feel!

Kind of like in that Twilight Zone episode where Burgess Meredith (as Henry Bemis) survives the end of the world but discovers the ruins of the public library, with all the books he could ever hope for. They're all there for the taking, and he finally has all the time in the world to read. But, his reading glasses break and he kisses his dream of reading his days away good-bye. In tears, Henry picks up the remains of his glasses and sobs, "That's not fair. That's not fair at all. There was time now. There was all the time I needed... ! It's not fair!"

Well, that's how I felt about my food. "That's not fair," I would sob to John. "I am so hungry and I can't eat what I want!" I'd cry for hours. I could feel the pounds falling off me. It stunk.

But enough whining. I can eat again. I can even down a milkshake, which is what I plan on doing every day to gain some of this weight back. I've been eating a Klondike Bar every night before bedtime, that's a good 250 calories a pop. And I try to get a real fattening latte every time I get out. Those Starbuck's lattes really pack in the calories. (Don't hate me because I can eat whatever I want! I still have cancer, remember? And except for my chubby cheeks, I look skeletal, nothing to envy believe me!)

So....that's how things are. Much better, although I'm still a little peeved that I have cancer in the first place. But at least I can eat, and I plan on doing just that once I publish this post!

2 Comments:

  • At 2/24/09, 9:01 PM, Blogger Prof. Katz said…

    Hey Kate,

    Glad to know you're feeling better! I was getting worried! Let me know when you're up for a visit.

     
  • At 2/28/09, 10:21 AM, Blogger Jenster said…

    Cancer sucks!!! But then you know that even better than I do!

    There's not a bit of jealousy that you can eat whatever you want! I'm just really, really, REALLY happy about it!!

    You go girl!

     

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