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Sep 25, 2021 07:58PM
Congratulations on the weekend OFF! Yay, no rads!
Hi RHBarker and Hi Serendipity :) I'm going to make a note of your final day - October 11- so I can send you some virtual hugs, flowers and balloons. I wish I could send some to you all. I know this is hugely stressful. I'm finally done with rads as of Tuesday and already do NOT miss that yucky daily commute. I forgot to bring the gift I made for the rad techs on my final day, and after it was done, I sprinted out of there so fast that I forgot to make my follow-up appt for two weeks - I'll wait and bring my gift then.
Not sure if I mentioned it here- I was so nervous about the "boosts" and tried half-heartedly to negotiate my way out of them (no dice) and it turns out, that last week was the home stretch of treatment because no more breath holds and it was only to one area and went really fast. During the last week I was able to ditch all of the sticky markers and that felt good.
NatureYogi, I'm so glad you got your mapping out of the way and that it wasn't so bad. The arms falling asleep is kind of the worst part. At the end of each rad session, they would say, "You can move your arms now," and I would say, "Uh, no, actually, I can't." I'd have to reach up and over and physically pick up my sleeping arm with the other half-asleep hand and bring it down.
You asked about creams... I ended up just using Calendula cream by Boiron. I couldn't handle the greasiness of Aquafor. I even sent away for Radiaplex because there was a study that it helped reduce radiation dermatitis, but that was kind of a big fail for me. I didn't see a difference so I went back to the calendula only which I like because it's creamy and soothing. I also drank a lot of water and ate extra protein to help my tissues and skin but I guess I was already doing that anyway.
I was so nervous about the supraclavicular nodes! But, I didn't get red up there at all. Just a huge rectangle of reddish tan across my left breast/chest and upper back. They did say that the left side of my throat might get red but it never did. I am still lotioning it for a few more weeks anyway. I hope everyone sails through without any supra node issues. This stuff is hard enough without the extra anxiety we go through the more we learn about it.
LW422, I'm glad you didn't need tattoos. Are they covering your markings with stickers? I was so worried the stickers would come off in the shower that I would put my hand over them so the water wouldn't hit them directly. I did get one waterlogged by accident but managed to keep it on until they could replace it the next day.
Something just occurred to me... and this is only anecdotal... My doctor was saying recently that we don't need to shower every day because hot water and frequent showers strips the protective oils from our skin and dries it out. She said showering is only important for three bacteria-haven areas - the groin, the armpits and the feet. So throughout rads, I showered only once a week. I am wondering now if that little experiment is what helped my skin stay intact. I did notice that the lotion would build up, but I kind of liked being chronically lubed up because that way it didn't get dry and sensitive. Just a thought!
Hope each of you are having a beautiful rads-free weekend!
Grateful to Jesus, that His love finally broke through to me. "With one touch, You just rolled away the stone that held my heart," - Lyrics by Keith Green, " 7 weeks of Radiation including supraclavicular nodes.
12/2020, IDC, Stage IIB, 5/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
12/20/2020 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
6/9/2021 Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Reconstruction (left)
8/4/2021 Whole breast: Breast, Lymph nodes