Friday, 20 July 2012

Chocolate on prescription?

© Rebecca Teal

Right then…first chemo session (I’m having FEC-T, four sessions of FEC then four sessions of T, but you’d worked that last bit out, hadn’t you?) was ok. It was a long day…we arrived at 8.30am and left at 3.30pm but were told this won't be the norm.

 
Here I am, prepped and waiting to be attached.

The first two drugs, Epirubicin (it’s red and makes your wee pink for two or three days…I like pink but usually go for it in a nail colour or pink sapphire way) and 5 Fluorouacil (5FU) are injected slowly into the cannula by a nurse and takes about an hour and a half. It’s a great time to ask all sorts of questions. Actually, that pink wee thing applies to all body fluids so there’s a chance my contact lenses may turn pink…bring it on!

It was during this that I was told I mustn’t have Take Aways as the risk of infection is too high. I was aware that chemo will supress bone marrow so my white cell count is low thus my immunity is low but I hadn’t realised just HOW LOW. Apparently, week two of the three week cycle is when it’s at its lowest. To help boost it, on Day 5 a nurse will come to my house and give me an injection.
On days 6 – 9 Mr T will give me the injection.

I was also told I absolutely, no messing, no resisting MUST HAVE a bar of chocolate a day to increase my sugar intake. So if Green & Black would like to sponsor me I’m happy to endorse their vegan chocolate.

The next drug, Cyclophosphamide, is in a bag and fed through a tube to my cannula. It hangs on a thing with wheels so I can wheel it to the loo with me. Ah, but I need the drugs in my right hand as my cancer is in my left breast…and of course, the loo paper is on the right hand side of the loo. Luckily, I’m pretty flexible :o)

We passed some time after prepping playing chess but abandoned the game to talk to my nurse. We may carry on from this position at the next session I’m playing as white.

Other bummer related news:
(I promise I won’t only blog about cancer, but at the moment it’s a bit all full on)

I knew I had Stage2, Grade2, ER+ cancer but now know it’s also HER2+. You can google but sod that! It means the cancer is more aggressive than I thought and I will need a further 18 sessions for the drug Herceptin (that’s about a year!). The first four sessions will be at the hospital then we’re hoping the rest can be administered by a nurse at home.

Yet again, I’m completely in awe of the NHS. The treatment, care and consideration I’m receiving are what’s making me cry the most…but crying a good way. Also, your messages are fantastic and make me do that crying-in-a-good-way-thing, too…so thank you to all of you and please don’t stop…and Messrs Green & Black, if you really want to make me cry… xx




Wednesday, 18 July 2012

La Di Da...

© Rebecca Teal

Today I collected another wig…
It’s actually quite a bit more orange (ginger) than the photograph shows.
It’s a prescription wig so for me it was free. It isn’t such good quality as my other ones but I do love it.
I love how it fades to dark brown
It’s quite a bit shorter than the first wig and is a lot easier to wear
so I may get a second one like this (though in just dark brown) which I will have
to pay for but daaaahling, I’m worth it xx

Tomorrow I have a very important date so I shall post about that in a a day or two and tomorrow the car is having the exhaust fixed…la di da…the excitement of it all!

 

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Ooh La La!

© Rebecca Teal

Yesterday, I did indeed collect my first wig...
soon I shall be collecting another rather different one...watch this space!

 
 I also collected a stand, a brush, some conditioning spray and some wig shampoo. Apparently it isn't necessary to douse it in Chanel so I need a different reason to stock up on that...hmmm...like I ever need an excuse.


Mr T and I were so excited/shocked/upset about buying/needing a wig that we forgot about the VAT exemption on hairpieces for cancer patients.
I shall call the shop today to see if it's too late.
(I'd quite like £40 back!)

      

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Rant Alert

© Rebecca Teal

RANT ALERT!

I've just watched a model on MFC sobbing as she was getting tips of 7777, 777, 77, 7 (you get the idea) over and over. Apparently it was making her cry because she's had such a hard time on MFC for the last two weeks. We've all had bad weeks on there but we don't all cry about it...we've all had great weeks on there.
It comes and goes.

I'd swap my cancer for a hard couple of weeks on MFC anytime.

I'm hoping I won't be ranting too often over the next few months but this did make me so mad.

EDIT: I know our personal woes are relative and I never dismiss anyone for theirs, but if you cry when it's good, what are you going to do when it's bad?



       

Thursday, 5 July 2012

...on a bike!!!

© Rebecca Teal

Jesus Christ On A Bike!!!!!

I had taken two “prescription only” strength co-codamol and the injection for the anaesthetic still had me on the ceiling. I was however given a double dose and told I could leave it for now and try again another day but I stayed and had the coil marker thingy put it.

The actual putting in wasn’t so painful, mostly because the lignocaine did its job; it’s getting a needle in so deep to get the lignocaine to where it has to be that has me uttering foul words. My care  team seem to be in agreement that the problem is the density of my breast tissue (that’s how come they’re so pert and I have no need to wear a bra!)

I had to have a mammogram afterwards. painful at the best of times but dear lord...! It was amazing to see the coil so clearly in place though. I'm hoping to get a print out to post on here soon.

Throughout the whole procedure, Mr T held my hand, kissed  my shoulder and made it all possible. Thank you, darling…”rock” doesn’t come close.

No medical pictures today so have this one instead



    

Shouldn't Google Everything!

© Rebecca Teal

This afternoon I am having a coil marker placed against the tumour. I googled "coil marker in breast"...silly, silly me.

"You're going to put THAT in my boob?! Pffft! Over my de...   Ah, yes, that would be the other option. Go ahead...put it in."

I will post later, if I'm not too busy being self-indulgent and wimpy and ouchy.

Yesterday Mr T called the salon for me…it seems they all close on a Monday so we’ll collect the wigs and see how it goes. I’m thinking at the first sign of hair loss he’ll whip it all off for me.

Bummer.


         
 

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Call the f**king salon...how hard can it be?!

© Rebecca Teal

I have a wig fitting on Monday afternoon and I’m sure the best thing to do is have my hair cropped on Monday morning. If I do that the wigs will sit better, I’ll be able to put them on more easily and it’s only one cut away from shaved. And if I’m honest, my hair is in a pretty bad state of abuse at the moment so even under usual circumstances a bloody good shortening (that’s 4 or 5 inches in my world) would be in order.

There’s a hairdresser next door to the wig shop (I like the idea of dashing from one door to the next under a hoodie) but it doesn’t open on Mondays and I don’t possess enough celebrity sway to make it happen. There’s another hairdresser a few doors away (a dash of a few doors will be just about acceptable) but I just can’t make the ‘phone call.  I have the number, I have my ‘phone, I have tears streaming down my face.

I know to all you people with hair, long or short or shaved through choice this may seem ridiculous. Bald or dead? Um…that’s a no brainer. But I’m a girl (albeit an old one) and girls are meant to have hair and this girl always has long hair. And having lovely, long hair makes me feel lovely and having no hair and no eyelashes and no eyebrows and no left breast and a sore mouth and sore eyes and aching joints and numbness
and so many other rubbish chemo side effects is going
to make me feel like absolute f**king sh*t.

But it’s better than being dead and without treatment that’s what I’ll be. So, the sensible thing to do is make the call to the hairdresser. I have the number, I have my ‘phone, I have tears streaming down my face…

 


Monday, 2 July 2012

Open Gown, BB

© Rebecca Teal


 
 This morning I had a Computed Tomography Scan on one of these babies!

I had to arrive an hour early so I could be given six cups of water (six wees ensued) as this somehow helps with the scans. After the first one I was hooked up via a needle to some dye which helps my inside bits show up. What a crazy job some people have…scanning bits of people. That said, I’m extremely glad they do.

 I was allowed to wear the hospital's best designer number...
I could see the passion in Mr T's eyes  ;o)

"Open gown, bb"

Next was an EchoCardioGram. Nothing much to report really except it’s rather awesome seeing my heart…we take far too much for granted.