Posted on: Sep 23, 2011 09:02 AM, edited Sep 23, 2011 06:09 PM by stjude10
Posts 1 - 30 (1,410 total)
Sep 24, 2011 06:48 PM Carla9112 wrote:
Hi there - I'm starting chemo on 9/30 so I'll join you. I sure do dread it but have learned so much about what to expect on this site. Hopefully it won't be too bad for us. I went today and bought a wig. I couldn't believe that I was actually able to find one that I like. The salesperson and tags on it said it was made out of real hair but I'm finding it hard to believe since it was only $50. I guess I'll find out when I try to curl it. :) I'm going to give it a week after chemo and then go ahead and get my head shaved. I can't deal with the shedding. When is your first treatment?
Sep 24, 2011 06:57 PM stjude10 wrote:
I have my first chemo on Oct. 18th. I have a lot of tests, and 2 more surgeries before then. I'm gonna be busy. I have decided that I have always wanted a short, cool rocker chick haircut, and too afraid to do it. I'm doing it now, got nothing to lose. The shedding is awful, I can tell you that. My daughter went thru chemo last year, and we had tumbleweeds all over the house. I think a super short 'do or a shave is the way to go. Glad that you joined up w/me!
Sep 24, 2011 08:16 PM Surreygirl wrote:
Hi Ladies, I orignally posted on the Sept 2011 thread, but have decided to come her because my chemo starts on Sept 30. I am on ACx4 and Taxotere x4, my onc prefers this I so I have a better shot at not needing the Neulasta shot.
I am hoping to be able to work through this as my job is only part time and my boss is flexible with my hours (my onc thinks I am crazy buy I love may job). I have told the boards of all the charities I work with that I will be taking a break though.
My husband is more anxious than I am and decided that we needed to go get the rest of my chemo bag along with my wig and head coverings today. I was very lucky that the lady who sold me my wig will also cut my hair short in a couple of weeks and then she will style my wig for me.
Not looking forward to 'chemo brain' as I am one of those hyper organized ladies with way to much on my plate. So keeping my fingers crossed that SE's are manageable.
Sep 24, 2011 08:17 PM Carla9112 wrote:
Hi Lori - nice to meet you. We can keep each other company throughout this ordeal. I really think I might try a blond or red wig too. Why not have a little fun with this stuff - right? I hope your surgeries go well and you are ready to kick butt on 10/18. I'm just so ready to get started on the treatment. After chemo I have to do 5 weeks of radiation. My cancer was triple negative and I tested positive for the BRCA 1 gene so they are treating my cancer very agressively. I figured it up the other night and I should be finished sometime in February. Do you know how long you'll have to take treatments?
I'm so sorry to hear that your daughter had to have chemo. Did she have breast cancer too? My daughter is 19 and I worry so much about her. The oncologist says she has to be tested to see if she carries the gene. I sure hope she doesn't.
Well, gonna run and watch football. Just taking it easy this weekend. Hope you have a good one!
Sep 25, 2011 09:46 AM stjude10 wrote:
Surreygirl, welcome! I am scheduled to have the same tx as you, the 4AC, and 4TAX. Your husband sounds sweet, getting you all prepared. I guess, best to do it now, while you feel ok. Regarding your working part time, why not aim high? If you don't feel like it later on, then you won't do it. As for chemo brain...ugh!
Hey Carla, I am due to finish around mid Feb. I am getting chemo every other week for 16 wks. I tested - for BRCA 1 and 2. What a relief. My daughter is in remission for leukemia. She was dx last Feb. and the 71 bags of chemo, yes 71, fought off the leukemia, yet she's at risk for developing other forms of cancer. She is still on 3 different chemos orally every day, but only has another year of that! She didn't want to have fun w/her wigs, she just wanted to look like her. I'm all about trying something new!
Sep 25, 2011 10:03 AM Surreygirl wrote:
Thanks for the warm welcome. I know what you mean by kids and wigs. I went to get mine yesterday and all my teenage daughter said to my husband was "don't let mom come back a blonde". I figure now is the time for me to play with all those hair colours I was never brave enough to try before. Some how my teenagers just don't see things my way. So I didn't get a blonde wig but boy did I have fun picking up scarves LOL.
I always hate hearing about kids effected by this nasty disease, I hope she is better.
Sep 25, 2011 10:51 AM mdg wrote:
Hi Girls! I am popping in from the March Chemo Lounge....I did the whole chemo thing and got through it! You will too. It is sucky but manageable. I did 4 rounds of Taxotere and Cytoxan. I was happy to say I did very well overall....I was able to exercise for an hour a day 5 days a week through chemo - did not miss one day. I had some minimal side effects but overall did everything I normally did before chemo the whole time. I had chemo on Wednsdays so I would leave the weekend after chemo open in case I didn't feel good. Most of the time we ended up doing something those weekends as I did not feel that bad. The other weeks, I did all normal stuff. I know how scary this is...I just wanted to encourage all of you and let you know you can do it! It will be over before you know it. Good luck to all of you...hugs!!!
Sep 25, 2011 10:59 AM Surreygirl wrote:
Thanks MDG, my biggest fear is not being able to do much of what I did pre chemo. I am a very active lady who works and volunteers a lot in my community. I know I won't be able to keep up with it all but at least being able to do some of what I used to do will keep me from going crazy. Your post makes me beleive that I may be able to do that! Thanks!!
Sep 25, 2011 02:48 PM stjude10 wrote:
Surreygirl- I'm gonna try some fun scarves too, although I suspect I might be a hat person!
Welcome Cindy! Hoping for good news when you see your oncologist.
MDG, thanks so much for the encouraging words. Feel free to chat w/us anytime
Sep 25, 2011 08:17 PM mdg wrote:
Feel free to ask questions any time. I hang out in the March Chemo Lounge with a wonderful group of gals...stop by for a drink sometime! Those gals will answer anything too. Really I feared chemo more than my BMX and it was not that bad for me. Drink TONS of water and try to keep moving. If you buy in to feeling like crap, you will feel like crap. I am saying prayers for you girls and hope all goes well!!!
Sep 25, 2011 09:02 PM Carla9112 wrote:
Hi everyone - I just got home from one of my best days since the surgery. Went to a relative's house this afternoon and had just a good old-fashioned home cooked meal. That's a treat for me since I live by myself.
Welcome to all of the new ladies. Surreygirl -you and I posted to Lori's post almost so your's wasn't there when I responded - otherwise I would have said hello last night! :) You and I have our first treatment on the same day although we're doing different "cocktails".
Lori - I am so happy to hear that your daughter is in remission. I can't imagine 71 treatments. I'm just sorry that you're having to face cancer now. This disease just absolutely sucks.
MDG - thank you so much for all of the encouragement. It sure does help to talk to people that have been through it and are on the other side of treatment. I'm like you - I fear and dread the chemo more than my BMX.
Welcome Cindy - I'm a North Carolina girl too. I was born in a little town called Murphy. It is about far west in NC as you can go. I sure do miss those mountains. It is very flat here in Nashville. Plus all of my family is in NC.
I hope everybody has a great week. I'm going to try to work full-time this week. I really believe that MDG's advice works. I went back part-time last week and it felt so good to be back in some normal routine again. I may even try to get up and walk in the morning. We'll see....
Sep 25, 2011 09:12 PM martygra wrote:
I am scheduled to have my first chemo on this Friday 9/30 so guess that is pretty much October chemo right. I am so scared right now I feel like I cannot handle much more without having a complete mental breakdown. I don't know a whole lot yet as I cannot even register what the dr. is telling me most of the time. I have chemo class at 8:00 tomorrow morning, port surgery at 10:00 am tomorrow. I am schedule to start 8 chemo sessions every two weeks starting 9/30. Lets help each other keep it together. Best wishes for minimal SE's for us all.
Sep 25, 2011 10:09 PM, edited Sep 25, 2011 10:09 PM by Surreygirl
So my husband had been learning a lot at his spouses support group. He had me out today picking up a long list of items for my chemo bag. He also has me a work bag and a home kit, LOL and I thought I was going to be the organizational maniac. My husband also decided that I need to bring the entire family to chemo lessons so that everyone knows what to do. My teenagers are beginning to worry about him more than me LOL.
Marty I know what you mean about not being able to process everything so I take my husband as the extra set of ears. If you have someone that can go with you it is better as I don't think anyone can process the amount information most of us have recieved in such a short period of time.
Good luck on Friday Carla and Marty and best wishes to everyone for minimal SE's
Sep 25, 2011 10:35 PM cfdr wrote:
I am starting on 10/7; four rounds of taxotere/cytoxan every 3 weeks, which means I'll have wrapped up my 4th cycle just before new year's. I was not slated for chemo at all until my oncotype dx came back at 25; right smack on the border but high enough that the med onc recommended chemo. I have already been through radiation (6 wks, including boost), so once I'm done I'm done...oh, except for that 5 years on an aromatase inhibitor.
Went to the drug store today for a flu shot and for my first chemo shopping trip...the other will be closer to d-day when I go to the grocery store. I have a prescription for a wig but work at home so I'm not planning to get a wig...maybe some "sideburns" from tlcdirect.com. But otherwise planning to make do with hats and scarves.
Despite good prognosis I have been struggling with a lot of mood swings...anxiety and depression...anyone else?
Sep 25, 2011 10:46 PM stjude10 wrote:
Hi Martygra, unfortunately, you're in the right place. I am scheduled to have my port inserted on Oct. 13th w/my chemo to begin on Oct. 18th. I am to have a follow up surgery this Wed. on my mx. They did a skin sparing, but the skin is not viable, so I'm not healing. Still on restriction, and still have a drain. Boo! PS says this will put me on track. I sure hope so.
Welcome cfdr! My mood swings have been ok, but I am tired and sleep a lot. Healing or depression? Not sure! I am having 4XAC and 4XTAX I go every two weeks. That's followed by the 5 yr. tamoxifen plan. For you and Surreygirl, what chemo class did you guys get? Nobody has said anything about a class or a bag.
Here's to another week girls, and a week closer to being cancer free!
Sep 25, 2011 10:57 PM Surreygirl wrote:
Hi cfdr my mood swings have started, but mine are more about getting organized. This morning it really hit how close chemo really is and started cleaning and them drafted the husband and kids to join in the fun. Needless to say I was not popular but saved myself by taking them to their favorite restaurant for dinner. My kitchen is hospital level clean though.
stjude - at our hospital you can't get chemo without going to the chemo class first. They teach you about meds, side effects and when to call the doctor or go to emerg. The one thing the onc emphasized for me on my first visit was how infection kills more chemo patients than the actual chemo. As far as the chemo bag, it is just stuff for me to take when I go for chemo, there are a lot of posts by women who have been through this before. I am taking crackers, a book, water, a cup for crushed ice and my mp3. The chemo bag is more about keeping yourself sane during the actual infusion.
Sep 25, 2011 11:04 PM stjude10 wrote:
Surreygirl, maybe they'll class me before treatment. Maybe when they spoke w/me, they figured I knew enough already. St. Jude staff are great teachers. I was so well trained, we didn't have a home health nurse, I did everything. Instead of a port, my daughter had 2 lumens that hung out of her chest that I took care of. I could even hang her bags of fluid and antibiotic, as well as any other meds in her line at home. With that being said, never thought of a bag. We did have a "go" bag that stayed in the car in case we had to rush to hospital, or clinic didn't go well and we had to stay. I like the idea of having an entertainment bag as I tend to get bored!
Sep 25, 2011 11:39 PM martygra wrote:
My mood is terrible at the moment, feeling suicidal. I go for chemo class at 8:00 AM tomorrow. Port surgery at 10:00. Echo test Tuesay am at 6:45, start chemo Friday. That is if this fear does not kill me first. I have wasted probably the last weekend I will feel good for a long time being unable to even function, did not even take a shower or brush my teeth today. I don't know how I am ever going to be able to hold up to this. Wishing you all the best.
Sep 25, 2011 11:49 PM, edited Sep 25, 2011 11:50 PM by Surreygirl
Marty you need to talk about your feelings with your chemo team. Feelings of depression from what I have read is pretty common and they have resources and medication to help. There is a thread here about depression and it may help to read that you aren't alone.
The best way I can think of this is to make sure I live life to the fullest and make sure than if I look back that there is NOTHING that I can regret.
Sep 25, 2011 11:59 PM stjude10 wrote:
Martygra, wish I were there to give you a much needed hug. I think we're entitled to have a day or two like that, but Surreygirl is right, you should speak w/your team and perhaps they can put your mind at ease or point you in the right direction for resources. Of course, your virtual sisters are always here, so rant, vent and get it out...we can take it!
Sep 26, 2011 09:32 AM madpeacock wrote:Hi ladies - Saying a tentative hello as I go tomorrow to my first onc appt to find out the plan - and then Weds for the radiation appt. I'm HER2+, so chemo seems like a given for me. Had a lumpectomy on 9/8 and other than some really ANNOYING numbess in my armpit and back of arm, I'm pretty much back to normal. I'm very active - like to run, water aerobics - etc., so I was back to it about three days after surgery. I'm wondering about work. I work from home doing medical transcription so I have extreme flexibility with time spent working, etc. I am also a big school/Girl Scout volunteer, but have put things on hold for now until I know more. Everyone keeps asking, "How do you feel??" Uh...fine? Still have a feeling like this is happening to somebody else even though it is my name on all those path reports...
Sep 26, 2011 10:50 AM stjude10 wrote:
Madpeacock, I'm glad to hear you're recovering so nicely. Hopefully, no offense, but you won't want or need to join us! I get that "do you need anything?" all the time. I want to say, "ya, not to have cancer, can you do that for me?" I know they mean well, but sometimes I want to talk about something other than that!
Sep 26, 2011 12:51 PM auntienance wrote:
Hi all -- I've been hanging out with the Sept. group, but got my schedule today. I start TCX4 on Oct. 3rd. I could have started this week, but I need to get my head and emotions in check this week. I guess I'll be working on my shopping list today. Already talked to my hair dresser to arrange for a buzz cut/shave in about 2 weeks. I'm sure that will be another emotional cyclone. I too, am very anxious about the whole thing, and have felt that paralyzing fear, but it seems to come and go. I'm hoping a long bike ride today will help put it at bay. @cfdr - I'm doing this because of my oncotype score of 26, so I know what you're talking about. Making that decision was AGONIZING. Mood swings, depression and anxiety seem to go with the territory, but it really really helps me to talk to people here. @mdg -- thanks so much! I really needed to hear that. At the moment, I've decided that I'm going to do fine until it appears that I'm not and then just take it as it comes. Cheers to all!
Sep 26, 2011 06:56 PM madpeacock wrote:
stjude10 - Know what you mean! My birthday is in a couple of weeks and people keep asking what I want. "No chemo!" Stuff is just stuff after all. My 86-yo mother in law, who lives with us for major health reasons, keeps telling me all the things she is going to do for me while I'm "unable". Uh, thanks, but that may cause more work than help...
Really restless today waiting for the onc appt tomorrow. REALLY need to go run, but the knees need a day off and radar shows rain right around the corner - literally.