Friday, February 20, 2009

February 18th- Dave's Birthday- spent in chemo with me!

Today was my second chemo infusion. My big brother Dave was kind enough to join me for the full 5 1/2 hours even though today is his birthday! I am sure he had other things he could have done on his birthday- ride his bike, be with the kids and Sara, sleep in, the list can go on and on. This is truly the man he is- giving so selflessly and always doing for others. I was glad he joined me today. We had a nice visit and as it turned out it was good to have his cardiovascular expertise...
Dave asked the nurse if there was a reason that Taxotere was the first chemo drug given and her reply was that out of all of the chemo drugs, this is the one that a person would most likely have a reaction to so they like to administer it first. The nurse reassured us by stating that this was my second treatment and a reaction would be very unlikely. Just as the drip started, I felt my face turn a burning red, my heartbeat sped up and blood pressure increase. Dave alerted the nurse very calmly and she stopped the Taxotere drip. Well, the 'very unlikely' reaction did happen. It made me nervous because it happened so fast and I don't think I have ever had a blood pressure and heart rate that high. I was worried that my treatment would need a change. After waiting about 45 minutes and with the added boost of a steroid, we proceeded with the Taxotere and all went well. I need to remind myself that there is usually a remedy and that these nurses have experienced this many other times. Of course my mind wants to jump to worst case scenario and think 'Oh great, now we have to change therapy and I will be back tracking'. No problem and no harm done. I was in great hands and the remedy is simple- next time the steroid will be given.
Oh and by the way, I have very little hair now. My Happy Valentine's Day was to lose my hair! I got frustrated after a few days of gobs of hair falling out that on Sunday, February 15th Ryan and I whacked my hair short. The sad part of it is that we didn't use haircutting scissors. We used the orange-handled-craft variety! It seemed to do the job. My short haircut is pretty silly but it won't matter for long as it continues to fall out. I guess I'll be shaving it soon.

1 comment:

  1. I love your outlook on the nurses and the fact that they've experienced your reaction, etc., before. Very objective and empathetic - like you always are! (Of course, we'd all wish you didn't have that reaction in the first place... :-))

    Still need to get you the pink mohawk wig. I think you'd rock it. Glad you're facing this with as much humor as humility, wonder and aniticipation as you can.

    The next chemo treatment will be better. We're all with you!

    Chris, Kim, Logan, the cats and Barley the dumb dog