Friday, November 5, 2010

Chemo #1, from Kate

Yesterday, I went info the Chemo #1. Only 5 more to go, and I then I get to ring the big ship's bell - the clarion call to everyone in the clinic that that particular person has finished their last chemo session.  It rang while I was there, and it was a lovely sound...

However, I am not there yet. My body is at war internally with itself.

Once the chemicals had truly begun circling through the circuits...here is what happened. I thumbed this out last night on the berry before falling into a heavily drugged sleep.

The muscles contract around my head as if to protect the neurons from onslaught.
A crushing tight band runs from mid back up spine and around jaw than around temples in a vice like grip. Blinding pain.
My abdomen is distended like a malnourished child full of gas and noxious chemicals and poison.
Today I have eaten pre-chemo a coffee and a quarter bagel and a really fucking good gluten free almond shortbread.
Post chemo a cup of tea, a whole wheat bagel with cream cheese and tomato.
Mike read the crossword clues to me to see if could focus, since I was beginning to feel naseated by looking at words.
And then I hit the wall. No actually then I hit a freezing cold plain of water from a great height head first with a slap and was left gasping from the bottom of the pool seeing my world and its players moving and talking as from a great distance. Wave after wave after wave of nausea. Like being on a boat in the perfect storm. A roiling pot. Some noises unbearable; reading insufferable; food, out of the question. Water, barely. Requiring a warm hand mine and a cold cloth on my head.
Today, a much much much better day. Astonishing, really. Learned to self-inject the white blood cell stimulant. Met some more staff at the hospital. Heard the news that it is not HER2 positive - but that is for another day. Had a 4 hour sleep, and a full supper of lovely home made shepherds pie. Happy to be able to focus on the words on  a page.

Andy's advice yeterday, expect nothing good or bad to happen with the chemo, just take it as it comes. Tomorrow could also be terrible, I do not know. But I am very happen in my current now.

Tonight there are 26 wonderful women from my neighbourhood cooking for us together, at Supper Works. 3 meals each. To sustain me and my family and friends. WOW. We are amazed and exceedingly grateful for this gift. A lovely selfless thing to do.

As KD Lang says,

Love will not elude you, it is simple
I worship this tenacity and this beautiful struggle we're in

xo KO

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

hang in there Kate, am thinking of you.

Love terry

Anonymous said...

Supperworks was great, feeling so wonderful to be part of an incredible group of women - thinking of you lots tonight. xo

virginia

Anonymous said...

Hi Kate,
I'd have been at Supperworks in a flash - if only I could just flash across the Atlantic :-(
Sending you GREAT BIG, but gentle, VIRTUAL HUGS instead.
Lots of love from us all xxxxx

Anonymous said...

Kate, your writing is fantastic -- descriptive, colourful, and of course completely rude and irreverent. Missing you and sending you big hugs during this next stage, and wishing I could join you for "... a really fucking good gluten free almond shortbread...".

Or mac and cheese and Tom Beringer wine :)

XO Melanie