74.3K members
1.2M posts
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Starting Chemo - 7th April

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi all,

Sophie - hope your neutrophils quickly bounce. I've been offered an injection to kick start the bone marrow, but I'm to have that a couple of days after a chemo. Maybe it's a differed thing you've been offered. Line now organised for insertion (and I don't want to know how!) for Thursday morning, first thing, and I'll get the 3rd FEC via it in the afternoon! That's cutting it to the wire time wise, but it seems to work! So where are you planning on going on holiday?

Hope everybody else is having an ok time

Sue xx

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Good evening everyone,
I can see I am not the only one who enjoyed the weather instead of the computer. As I got some normality back in my life and worked hard last week to catch up with my back log at work, I almost felt normal and hardly thought of the next chemo. It was due today, but the neutrophils were down. We will try again on Wednesday, then Thursday they will give me an injection to boost the little bugger. So hopefully I won't have any further delay. I still have my eyes on my trip to France in August. This keeps me going...

M-L, I see we have the same objectives... Hols first rads after. I am meeting with the radiologist on Thursday and will not let him book me for August. Onc said I could go between two Herceptin and they would even postpone one for me so I can get a nice break.

Sue, I hope they do fit your line soon so you can get on with things. What a birthday present, I don't think you will ever forget it...

Lots of sunny hugs to everyone.
Sophie

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi all,

Sorry to have been out of touch. After 2nd chemo ended up with phlebitis, and a temp, so had to spend a week in hospital. It was great fun. I had such a good time telling medics they weren't allowed to take blood out of my left arm. We even had a mexican stand off, with me refusing treatment. I won. Oh the joys. Then, once I got the cannula out (because the vein had tracked etc) a junior doctor showed up two hours later and told me it had to be reinserted. You know the fight or flight instinct? I did both - I told the doctor my breast cancer care nurse was coming in and would tell her what's what and then I ran away!!!! The poor doc is at the top of the stairs calling to me to come back, she won't touch me etc!!!! You couldn't make it up!

The vein in my right arm has now collapsed. When I got out on Thursday my neutro whatnot was 0.44. Am hoping it's now 1 so that I can get a line fitted. Does anyone know how long you have to wait after having a Hickman fitted before you can have chemo again? I'm scheduled for this Thursday, but it's starting to look iffy. I don't want to delay it because, if it all goes according to plan my last chemo will be on my birthday - which is the best present I could get!! Lyn? Any idea?

I hope you are all coping ok, staying out of hospital, and even managing to have a laugh occasionally!
Sue xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi all,
Like Polly, I also hope the quiet means that everyone is well and too active to find time to 'rest' in front of the computer. I've recovered from whatever took me into hosp for 4 days - & hopefully won't get it again as I get Neulasta shots from now on (as I mentioned elsewhere) which keep the white cell count normal. Next session on Thursday if my blood tests are OK on Wednesday - here's hoping because I've really felt for those who have had to sit through postponements. I want to be out of this by the end of August so I can have a summer holiday before rads. Get the priorities straight!

And Naz - it wasn't the research/writing of the PhD dissertation that got me down, I've never been happier & my funding was very good. It was the flop afterwards when my subject proved uninteresting/non-commercial to Finnish foundations (who are NOT interested in community formation among 19th century British merchant families in Petersburg) and research funding dried up (I should have looked into mobile phone use or something - Nokia just throws money at social scientists - or moved back to Britain or Oz, but there's the family, you see) and had to settle for short research stints, part-time lecturing, brown-nosing, economic insecurity and subjects not of my choosing. Not my kind of thing at all. As you say about philosophers - not a great call for anthropologists either, especially if they are fifty and don't speak the local language very well. Y'gotta laugh! I wouldn't employ me either! This has given me the mental space to re-assess and start off in a new direction.

Cheers all, and best of luck for the next round.
M-Lxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi friends

I haven't really got anything to say as life has been quiet and problem-free the last few days and I'm making the most of it! Just wanted to say hello to you all and push this thread back up again. I'm now 2 weeks after chemo and starting to feel good again. I've got a week to enjoy the better days before chemo no 3 on 19th. Hopefully the weather will be kind to us all so that we can get out and about on our good days.

I hope all you ladies are as well as you can possibly be - if not, I send you hugs and hope that you start feeling better soon. I’m hoping that as it’s been really quiet on here it means everyone is OK.

Enjoy the good days everyone and keep well!
Love
Polly x

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi All,

So sorry i hav'nt been on here for a while, but been enjoying the weather and catching up on a few things with my kids while the going is good! My onc has decided now that I need to have antibiotics before my next session of chemo to try and keep my sinus at bay - hopefully!!!

How r u all, like polly suggests it has gone quiet on her recently I suppose everyone is making the most of this fab weather

well no news is good news, take care everyone,

Paula xx

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hello again, just wanted to pick up on something that you said, M-L, i.e that since your diagnosis, having stepped back from 3-4 years of a "peculiarly horrid existence" as "a marginalised, mature-age PhD/lecturer/researcher facing a post-doc dead-end" you are now experiencing a "different movement of time" and "love it", I couldn't agree more. I went through a terrible time while I was researching/writing my PhD - for all sorts of reasons - and although I finished a few years ago now and have been in a reasonably well paid job more or less since finishing (I work in Higher Education as a senior administrator - full-time permanent posts for philosophers are limited - and I'm also incredibly lazy and would not have - and certainly have not - published the requisite number of papers, books, etc that apparently make a good academic) I really appreciate the additional time I have during the day now and the shift in the whole pace of life at the moment - and I've got a little spare money to treat myself with occasionally that I definitely did not have while I was studying!

And, of course, now my chemo has been delayed for a week even if I can't/won't be sunbathing I will at least feel reasonable over the weekend enough to enjoy the fine weather and my garden. Oh, and on Monday, I am going to one of the Look Good Feel Better sessions where I should receive expert advice on how to look after my skin, apply make up etc - and walk away with over a £100 of cosmetics/skincare!

Apologies to anyone if I am too upbeat - when you may be feeling a little rough with the chemo but it feels so long ago since I felt just a little optimistic that I'm afraid I am going to succumb to it!

All the best to everyone. xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Can't remember that far back!!!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Oh the joys of sex !!!!!!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

...but it seemed a good idea at the time...!!!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

If I'd known then what I know now I'd have stuck to cats and horses!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Oh the joys of being a parent!!!!

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi all, sorry I'm totally losing track of threads after not being on much last week. Have set up two new (well, 2nd-user) computers from eBay and whoopee, broadband is working on four computers as I type this!

Hope everyone is enjoying the weather. I'm sleepy in the afternoons but don't actually go to bed if I can help it. Been taken out for a couple of pub lunches and drop off in the car, or I'll easily doze on the sofa. Not disabling exhaustion, though, and no sickness again after 2nd Epi last Friday. Hair is trying to hang on, thinning but not falling unless I comb it, so I'm hardly touching it. Sure it will go next week. Everyone in bad moods, esp eldest, 21, who is picking rows with everyone and being insufferable about the stress in her life - a good career but she hates the job, lovely boyfriend who lives here but she grumbles that they still can't afford anything, a car bought by her dad but it isn't new enough, her horse lives here and isn't talented enough, she has friends, looks, a holiday abroad booked... I'm lucky, really nothing to moan about at all!! Lyn xxxxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Polly-and all.

Sorry I haven't been on here for a while i have moved to the tax threads and so you may find me on there. I'm doing ok but tax is a but of a rough ride, however we have no choice but to do it.

Its amazing how time is passing by from when this thread was started and where are slowly but surely travelling down the road of chemo. In a few months we will be nearing the end.

Take care
Sukes

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hello again everyone - just this moment had a phonecall from the oncologist nurse to say that my chemo tomorrow will have to be postponed for the week - neutrophils down to 0.5, WBC 2.2. Not at all surprised and strangely not that disappointed - I'm hoping that I might just get to feel okay for a day or two before the next onslaught!

Apologies, but still don't feel too well so will save a longer post for when I'm on the steroids again.

Hoping that everyone is managing okay.

Naz, x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi All

Had 2nd FEC yesterday and so far.......fingers xxx that I am feeling ok. I can't wait for the port to be inserted on the 21st May as it bloody hurt in my vein and as soon as she had finished I had to ask her to remove the cannula as it was unbearable.

Good news from my onc....I had booked a holiday 19th Sept to Ibiza as was worried that I couldn't go but she has given tme the go ahead so at least I still have that to look forward to.

If I go on 3 week schedules I should finish TAX by end of July then go straight onto 20 sessions of rads before my hol. Can't wait!

Hope everyone is well and bearing up - this sunny weather sure makes it better!!

Anita xxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi all

It's all gone quiet on here - I hope you are all OK and that the reason no-one has been on for a couple of days is that you are enjoying the lovely weather.

Keep well and love to all!
Polly x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi friends

Back again! Hello to everyone - hope you are all keeping OK. After a rough few days last week I am back feeling fine again - it has been easier this time, thank goodness! No allergic reaction to the steroids, no sweats and dizziness and, so far, no oral thrush - my main problem has been nausea and I took the maximum dose of anti-sickness for 3 days but am off them now today and am eating normally again. Fortunately I haven't been sick so I think I've come off fairly lightly this time. How does everyone else cope with the nausea?

I have been catching up with you all on the thread and you all seem to be coping OK. Paula, how are you as you seem to be the one most under the weather - are you better now? No news of Sukes and Lyn yet after their chemo last week so hope all is well with you both (hugs). Anita and Naz, I think you have chemo coming up this week - good luck, I will be thinking of you both!

As we are all at different stages of our chemo cycles, it’s difficult to remember where everyone else is – just wish you all the best of days. Each day brings us nearer to the end of our treatment and I just try to keep thinking of all the pluses - I don't have to go to work, I haven't needed to wash and dry my hair, defuzz my armpits or pluck my eyebrows for a while now and I usually suffer from psoriasis (a skin disease where the skin cells grow too rapidly) but that completely disappeared about 5 days after my first chemo! After nearly 50 years of having the complaint it seems miraculous not to have it but I am told it will come back after the treatment has finished - boo! I don't think that I will choose chemotherapy as a permanent treatment though! - I may even welcome it's return as a sign that my body is returning to some sort of "normality"!

M-L, I so admire your friend - what a character she is! After just 2 tax (as part of TAC) I am in awe of someone who has undergone 16 of them (as well as everything else) and kept such a wonderful sense of humour - an inspiration to us all!

Take care everyone and keep well!
Love
Polly x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi,M-L,

Your comments were a tonic to me, reading them just now.

I cut my hair right down to a stubble about a week ago, can't bear the thought of putting a razor on my scalp though, so just leaving it alone now to finish dropping out a few more hairs each day. There's not much left at all. I'm just getting used to walking around at home with nothing on my head. My family are not batting an eyelid. I am glad it's the warmer weather, I would be feeling the cold if it was winter.

I, too, feel like I'm discovering the "real me" who has been hiding away all these years. I say what I feel now, if something bothers me! And I've got a new excitement for life,an enthusiasm, which I did have to some extent before, but is rising up as I realise how easily our life can change unexpectedly. I'm still getting used to losing a breast, but if it means I'm alive then it's worth it. I'll just be glad when my energy levels increase. mind you, the steroids don't half give you a boost! I pulled my cooker out yesterday and cleaned about half a ton of fluff away, due to the tumble dryer being sited nearby!

My second FEC is going well. Drank more water before and during the infusion and therefore suffered no headache this time. No nausea, as before, and took precautions to avoid constipation.Awake until 4am due to the steroids, but that's ok, can cope with that.Have something for heartburn, so that's been avoided,too, this time. So, glad to have No. 2 out of the way. Wondering when I'll hear back from my bc nurse about my permanent prosthesis - maybe this week?(8 weeks post-op). Need to buy a couple of new bras, too. Wait until I've got my prosthesis or not?

OH and myself hoping to go next week help paint a house. Some friend's from church are moving into it in two weeks time. It's all hands on deck! ( I'll take it gently. Maybe just make some cups of tea!). It will be nice to do something different from just pottering about at home, and to have some company, I have been feeling a bit low on female company this week. Have made a start in the garden, and hope to do some planting tomorrow into tubs.But don't panic, girls, everything is done at a very leisurely pace - don't picture me rushing around!

Glad to hear from you Naz.
Glad too, that, in the end it worked out for the best that you postponed it for a day. Hope your results for HER2 turn up, and all the best for Thursday.

Lyn,
Hope your second epi went well on friday, and that your chording is improving. it's hard to keep the exercises going once the chemo starts, isn't it? I keep forgetting to do them, but my arm is recovering well despite that. hope your recon is healing well, and you are enjoying the weekend, if possible.

Polly,
Glad your chemo went much better this time.It's a help to feel more in control, isn't it? Well done. The nurses are so helpful, giving you what you need.

Louise,
Do you know, it never struck me about the title of the dvd we have been watching! "The worst week of my life".Hehe. Actually, the worst week was the week of my dx, I think you will agree. I am coping well with having treatment, because I feel it's doing me good in the long run ( don't quote me when I moan about the tax, later!!!!).

I'm in danger of losing track of everyone on here, so I'll just say best wishes to all you lovely, special ladies, and hope you find the energy to keep in touch. It's such an encouragement to hear how everyone is fairing - mostly well. I'll revise my list of names to make sure I don't miss anyone out in my prayers for you all!

Love,
Ann xxxxxxxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi guys,
It's 1 am + here in Finland, but I had a doze on the sofa this evening and am now wide awake - 'and loving it'. Day 6 after 1st tax and I've felt worse after - well, I was going to be humorous but - 'physically' - I suppose I would have been surprised and despondent if I felt like this without good reason 'old-life'. But waaaaay better than day 4 - which, on the other hand, was punishing enough to be really interesting. I had a wonderful day today, however. Took the old dad out the door to do a bit of food shopping (as I've mentioned elsewhere, I'm compulsive about it at the moment) 'up the local store' & dressed appropriately in baggy joggers, sandals & 'commando' buzz cut - then decided to go into city markets for the outing & some fresh fish. I caught sight of myself, for the first time in the urban setting, with buzz cut and clothes I wouldn't normally wear beyond the village & thought, with a slight doleur - "I'm a handsome old dyke." I told my dad and we laughed until we missed the walk lights. I was somewhat relieved that I didn't bump into anyone I know, especially any of my students. They'd have been struck all of a heap. I bought myself an armful of yellow tulips and sapphire aconitum - and funny things like pomfret (fish from the Indian Ocean), cuttlefish, blue-green asparagus & okra which the OH would never eat (he's away) from various outlets - and felt like I was 'abroad' because of the utter relaxation of it. I was 1 km down the road from my office at the university - and about a universe away. I didn't drop in.

As Hazel says: "It's amazing how these days go in just pottering around the house and doing emails and phone calls. It's very different from my normal working and rushed home life but I'm beginning to get used to it and not find it too frustrating." Hazel, this rings a bell with me, with the difference that, with my cancer dx, I've stepped back from 3-4 years of a peculiarly horrid existence as a marginalised, mature-age PhD/lecturer/researcher facing a post-doc dead-end - into hey! that's me I see in here! Happy girl! 'Handsome dyke-like' exterior or not (and I'd rather not), I've quickly got a grab on the different movement of time and love it. I have to apologise if I am bouncing about the place delighted with things - I was dying before, and now I am alive. What's body-parts got to do with anything?

So , PollyH, slushy is good. We like slushy. The world would be so lucky to get such a dose of slushy - I got one when I opened this thread half an hour ago and thought, "I've been so bloody lucky to have found myself here". I could have been doing this 'alone' in Finland, stoically lost in a blur & just waiting for it to be over in order to get back to 'normal'. But hey guys! I'm not going back. Never. I'm going forward.

So: good for you Naz, postponing treatment for a day because you felt better about that - it might put the system out a bit, but if someone sacrifices a tea-break everything will be right back on slap-happy schedule. Actually, I think the nurses like it if you can break through the tired old nurse/patient relationship with something like humour or sympathy - they get rubbed smooth with the endless round of 'patients' presenting themselves as victims, and the shield is pretty much essential. If you can relate to an 'assailant' in a way that makes the assailant recognise common humanity, it is a 'good' thing for both parties. I like to make 'my' nurses laugh or get them to tell me something about themselves - I want to have a 'connection' moment first - it makes what follows a much nicer exchange.

Anna and all others dithering over hair loss - cut it short then shave it shorter than a cm. (just IMO). It lets family (and self) get used to the general profile while it is still fully voluntary. As I said, I was actually in 'Gotham City' with it today, without forethought - no one stared. Summer is coming. Bald is beautiful - yeah, right! I made the last bit up.

After the steroid withdrawal, Tax seems to leave one under the weather. It is only day 6, and the weather is far from tempestuous. An old friend, somewhat lapsed, who is the only person I know here who's had the bc trip, rang to check how I was a couple of days ago. Hers was a particularly aggressive variety which came back in the lymph nodes twice - 3 times in about 5 years altogether. Her partner had left her not long before & she had 2 young kids when dx. - now 12 & 14. She's had a mastectomy (not nearly as common here as in Britain it seems) and is not bothering with a reconstruction at present because she says that her newish partner is perfectly happy with one. Wicked glint in her eye that says that she means it. She's also been through 16 x tax & 6 x fec. And the rest. Water off a duck's back. "It made me breathless going up a hill and beer tasted like shite," she said. "I switched to wine." There's yer Finnish woman - what a wimp I am.

Thanks to all, lots of love, M-L xx

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

hello there

Naz - so sorry to hear you've been through the mill at little, the whole journey is an emotional rollercoaster without other hurdles along the way, sending you hugs xx

Lyn - have you managed to get your broadband sorted, i've had similar probelms, we had to by a new computer in the end which was more compatible and a new fax machine!!

Ann - so sorry to hear your at the hair!!! stage now,its hard but also a relief in a strange way because your not waiting for it to happen anymore, plus your scalp gets so tender. I have to wear a "Benny" hat in bed because my head gets cold!

Hazel - so so sorry you've had a rotten time with sickness, i hope you get sorted with different meds next time to prevent this happening again.

M-L - How are you after your first Tax?

Anita - Have you tried Buffs for your head, they are so soft and comfortable, try www.buffs.com.

Sophie and Louise and anyone I've missed, Keep well and thinking about you all, miss not keeping in touch on my bad days

Love and hugs xxxxxxx

Paula

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Great to hear from everyone. Naz, you have had a right old time of it, good that you are seeing a counsellor. Hope you're feeling better Paula. Did you sleep better, Polly? You will probably be much better next time, Hazel, I was only ever sick with number one.

Ann, I just HAVE to say to you that your choice of DVD title is VERY apt for the few days following chemo....the worst week of my life,.....hehe yerrrrrr!

Take care all

Love Louise

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hiya, thank you, Polly, Ann, for remembering me - unfortunately I didn't react very well to my third dose of epi - I was laid up in bed for the first week - nothing serious - and having got out of the habit of browsing the posts on the forum I found that my ability to concentrate returned to the extent that I could read - so I've been catching up on all those books I promised I would read when I had more time.

I did have a bit of a 'trauma' just before my third dose - my blood sample of the day before was mislaid and I had to give another sample the next day - on the day I was expecting to have the chemo. Although my counts were good enough for the chemo to be administered, they told me that they would have to give it to me in my left hand instead - the side on which they had operated - because they had already punctured a vein on my other arm (from when they took the blood). I have had level I & II axillary node clearance and although they did try to reassure me that there would be little risk of me developing lymphodema if I did have the chemo that day I just burst into tears – at the thought that there was still a risk if I did go ahead and that I would have to wait another day at least if I postponed, never mind feeling guilty by adding to the nurses’ workload when they were already very busy!

I eventually chose to postpone the chemo and after a day of waiting they were also able to tell me that they could give it to me the next day. As for the mislaid blood sample - apart from being infuriated when one of the nurses asked if I’d forgotten to go for the blood test in the first place – it would not have surprised me if the chemo had had to be delayed anyway because my neutrophil count the next day, although okay, was not that high. I know that these things happen – and that it was not a life or death situation – but three months after my operation I am still awaiting the results of the HER2 test and after this little episode I cannot help but worry that these results have been mislaid too.

Still, I am almost halfway through the chemo now and hope to have my final dose of epi next Thursday. Strangely, too, although to the non-observant I am very much bald, hair appears to be growing where it has already fallen out, which, I know, will probably fall out again, but is reassuring to behold!

I have my first appointment with a counsellor today so I should really give myself time to think about what I hope to get from the sessions so I shall leave you all now but I wish each and every one of you the very best in your treatment.

Lots of love, Naz

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi to all,

Glad to hear that you are ok after second chemo, Polly. it will be easier with extra medicines for those side effects.What were your main problems? I'll be asking for something to prevent heartburn, which was my main problem after coming off the steroid tablets. hope you sleep well, or at least enjoy a good book whilst awake! I, too, had a rosy glow from the steroids! it makes you look so well!! How lovely that your son and daughter are caring for you so well. We'll miss the attention when this is all over, won't we!

Lyn, sorry to hear you have still been having trouble with broadband! What a pain. It's amazing how we have all become reliant on it to keep in touch! My hair started falling out big time after having it cut quite short last week. ( stop to strip jumper off....hot flush! ...that's better.....)but I couldn't bear the thought of clippers near my tender scalp, so got some sharp scissors yesterday and locked myself in the bathroom for an hour. cropped it down to the equivalent of a number 2, I suppose. Shed a few tears, but as it came off slowly it seemed easier to cope with than having someone do it to me.I was able to laugh as I finished off, deciding I looked like a baby chimp, as my ears seem to be sticking out more!
Today, I've tidied it up a bit, and I wish I had cut it as soon as my scalp began to get sore,because now it feels fine without the pressure on my loose hair from wearing a scarf or buff. So, go for it ladies! I'm not shaving my head yet, though, I'll see what happens over the next three or four days, as it's half gone already! Couldn't wear my wig, as scalp to itchy. Saving it for a week or two.May just save it for when I go shopping.Looking forward to ticking off FEC no.2 tomorrow.feel a bit apprehensive cos may have trouble with my veins. Nurse said they are good at finding one,but don't fancy them having to stick me lots of times to find one! my vein was sore a few days later. Anyone else find that?

Paula, so sorry to hear you've had sinus problem again. What a nuisance and a pain. maybe you'll have to have antibiotics for three days before your next chemo? I do hope it clears up really quickly.Look after yourself and get as much rest as you can.

Hazel, sorry you were sick,maybe they will give you a stronger anti-sickness tablet next time, if you ask. Hope you are picking up quickly. Yes, the days go by quickly don't they?! Still, it's a special time and we need to relax as much as possible.Happy Birthday for last week! ( HUG ). I treated myself to some comedy dvd's this week, and they have been a great tonic. "The Worst Week of My Life" TV series. My OH and I have been in stitches.

M-L, hope you are still ok after first tax. I have heard that it can hit you with aching joints after a few days, a bit like having flu'. What joy! Still, if it does the job we want it too, then it will all be worth it. still the lesser of two evils,isn't it.I'm not looking forward to it, though! Glad you are having a nice time with your dad. That's great. my mum wants to come for a few days, but i may put her off until I really need her, during the tax cycles.

Anita, glad your family like your wig, mine do too, but it's still hard to actually go out with it on isn't it! i'm pretending i've just come back from the hairdressers, that's why it looks so fantastic. but, it does make you feel self conscious doesn't it?! We'll have to wear our posh clothes to match! Doesn't look right with a T-shirt and joggers somehow!!! My buff is my favourite thing, so comfy. I must get a couple more, as nice to wear a fresh one each day.

Sophie and Louise, glad you are doing well, hope it keeps up. Naz and Rachy, hope you are doing well and enjoying some good days.
Anyone else i've missed, hope you are feeling more energetic as each day of cycle goes by. We will all get there in the end, and it will go more quickly than we can imagine. keep sending those positive thoughts around to everyone, it does make a difference.

Hugs to everyone,

Love and God bless,
Ann xxxxxxxxxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Polly, Hi All

Just to say I hope you recover speedily and that you are back to fine form in a couple of days.

My son is definitely a sweetie and has just told me he loves me but I think that is because I have just agreed he can watch Man Utd (1st half) BLESS HIM!!!

Good luck to all on treatment this week and best wishes to those 'under the weather'

Anita xxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi everyone,

Just to let you know the chemo went well yesterday - I had a lovely nurse who was very thorough and gave me lots of tips and various medicines to help me cope better with the side effects I had last time - it's amazing how less stressed I am now that I feel a bit more in control! I have been OK today though very tired after 2 nights of little sleep due to the steroids - I even remembered to take the steroids a lot earlier in the day this time but it hasn't helped. Hopefully I will be tired enough to sleep tonight! Fortunately I haven't had the allergic reaction to the steroids that I had last time - I just have a rosy glow!

Sukes, I hope all went well with your tax today and good luck with your chemo tomorrow, Ann and yours later this week, Lyn! Thinking of you all!

Sophie and Louise, pleased to hear you are feeling better after your chemo and hope you enjoy some good days again!

M-L, I hope you are still feeling fine after your tax and enjoying your time with your Dad and your son - a precious family time you will look back on with fond memories, I'm sure!

Sarah, Rachy, Naz and Paula - hope all is well with you!

Anita - what a sweet son you have! I, too, have been impressed by my son who has treated me with such love and sensitivity and phones often to see how I am - I think it brings their protective side to the fore! My daughter too has been a star- she phones every day from London, brought some home-cooked meals for our freezer when she last visited and has just sent me some lovely flowers. I feel so privileged to be so cherished!

Well, just reading this I sound a bit slushy - must be the tiredness making me feel emotional!

Best wishes to all you brave and wonderful ladies - keep your spirits up! -hopefully will speak to you soon - keeping my fingers crossed that my crash tomorrow will be a minor one!
Love
Polly X

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

hello friends

Good to here from you, sorry I've not posted for a while, but been under the weather again. Chemo seems to really hit hard with my sinus' and I'm now on third dose of antibiotics - the GP tells me these are stronger!! I felt like giving the whole thing in these past few days, how can all this siffereing be worth it!! I've been no use as amother or wife these past few days!!! Sorry for moaning.

Good luck to you all and keep well

Paulaxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hello everyone
I've been keeping up with reading your messages but haven't posted much for a while. Polly, Lyn, Anita, M.L, Jennifer and all - you have been keeping up my spirits. It's now one week since my first FEC - sounds rather rude doesn't it? I was violently sick the first day, then nauseous and now I'm feeling fairly normal. It's amazing how these days go in just pottering around the house and doing emails and phone calls. It's very different from my normal working and rushed home life but I'm beginning to get used to it and not find it too frustrating. I had my birthday last week and my daughter gave me various sets of comedy therapy DVDs. I just haven't had time to watch any of them. I don't even always get to finish reading the newspaperby the end of the day!
M-L I enjoy your posts a lot. I have recently got back in touch with an old school friend who lives in Finland now so I'm beginning to get a feel for life there.
All the very best to everyone
Hazel

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Anita, your son sounds an absolute poppet, he said just what you needed to hear, bless him! I started shedding yesterday and can't (yet) face clippering it all off. My kids are 21, 19 and 16, and pretty worried about having a bald mum - Sophie I understand how your 10 year old feels, my youngest is really worried about school friends noticing a difference when I drive up to collect her - luckily she's getting a lift most days. Polly, I hope your second TAC went smoothly, let us know how you are. M-L it's lovely hearing about your very different climate and culture, your sense of humour bubbles through all your posts, I hope your son feels better too. Louise, Ann, anyone I've missed, I hope you're all on top of things and pleased to be ticking off another session... love to you all. Lyn xxxxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi All!

I am at the shedding stage too after 1st FEC on 15.4.08. Not too much at present but know that it has started and won't stop!

I was fitted for my wig today by a lovely lady who was very professional and caring. If anyone is in this area W. Lancs visit Yvonne Barlow in Blackpool. A very small but personal shop. Well recommended.

I had my wig on when hubby and son came home - both of them thought I had had my hair done! You should have seen the look on son's face (age 😎 when I lifted it off - laugh! He was well impressed and said I still looked like mummy. This has really boosted me and hopefully won't suffer any confidence thing.

Good luck to all on treatment this week - I have my 2nd FEC next week and not looking forward to it but atleast I can say that it's now 2 down and 4 to go!

M-L - hope you and your son get better soon xxx

Anita

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hello everyone

Good luck to those having their chemos this week including Polly, Ann, Lyn and Rachy.

My fourth one has been easier than all the rest, I am glad to say and now at least there is an end in sight. I do empathise about your hair loss Polly, it is much better once you have shaved it. I do like the fact of just "wash n go" and got used to being bald amazingly quickly. Sophie, I know what you mean, I have been in that black place, right after chemo three. ((HUG)). I have got used to people looking at my scarves and buffs, I smile when they stare, and they feel embarrassed (haha)

M-L hope your son is Ok and you continue to enjoy Dad's visit.

Love to all

Louise x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi all.
Just been revising my way through this thread - things read differently after the first session than when waiting for it, and I've really enjoyed the high spirit here. Best of luck to everyone coming up for a session this week & hope the weather is as warm and gorgeous where you are as it is here in Finland at the moment (though the leaves still aren't out on the trees yet - long, long, winters, short warm summers).

Had the first Tax last Thursday - so this is only day 3!!?? Feels like a lifetime because of hardly any sleep, and not needing it. This is so unlike me. Thanks to those who sent their well-wishing my way, it seems to have worked so far and I'm counting on it continuing. It's all rather interesting and there's no way to experience it other than first hand - because you wouldn't wish it on your worst enemy, haha.

My 16-year old son has had bronchitis which apparently developed out of mononucleosis - they can cure the bronch, and have, but the mono seems to be dragging on and on. We make a fine pair - snapping at each other, both tired and worried about each other & mono can debilitate an adolescent for up to three months. I worry that HIS worry about me might have helped activate what is quite a common virus in his age group, though one that doesn't always manifest itself. Guilt, guilt, bad mother. And so the husband took off to Argentina the day after my chemo to film Finnish Fear Factor (production manager, not something daredevil) leaving his sick little family in the hands of my 78-year old dad who hopped over from Wales to fill the breach for a month and all three of us joke about which one will keel over first. We're having fun - probably much more than if OH were here; my dad is a lot funnier and hugely irreverent, whereas OH is all rather Finnish-Lutheran and glum about his wife's condition and a bit intolerant of his son's 'weakness'. Bit of a holiday, really.

Well, it starts to get light in these parts, this time of year, in about 2 hours, and the birds start up and are deafening, so I must TRY to get to sleep. Hot milk with manuka? Too stimulating?

Cheers everyone, M-L

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Good evening everyone.
While I have been lucky so far with the side effects, I have not really been feeling human until this afternoon. The steroids tends to give me insomnia but don't really give me a kick. When I stop them, I hit rock bottom with tiredness, weepiness. Well it seems that I have passed this stage, for this cycle phew. I hope I just forget what it is like before the next one. This week I kept wondering about the fact that "It is doable".

Shedding hair still, as I have so much, it seems like a never ending story. My daughter cut it short and I wanted to shave it off, but didn't dare as my 10 year old is worried about me being bold. So the house is full of hair... lovely.
The wig vs scarf dilemna is raging in my head. The scarf will be a huge statement: "I have cancer, stop starring", while the wigh is more like "It looks fake" "Stop starring".
I can't believe that I am losing my confidence so quickly. I never ever ever cared what people thought of my looks.

Polly,
Good luck for TAC n2 tomorrow, be strong.. I will be thinking about you.

Have a great week everyone, I hope to get some normality back in my life on week 2 chemo 2.

Love
Sophie

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi everyone

Hope you have all had a good weekend!

Well, It's TAC no 2 for me tomorrow - I am so not looking forward to the next week!! My son gave my hair a No 1 on Friday as I was so fed up with finding hair everywhere and my hair was so thin that I had resorted to scarves anyway. I've not been brave enough to wear my wig yet - will wear it first I think where nobody knows me and see if I get stared at - my OH and son say it doesn't look like a wig but it looks so false to me - must be more confident!! It is really weird having just a bit of stubble on my head - makes showering and getting dressed so much easier! I'd like to think I look like Demi Moore but actually look more like Matt Lucas!!

Sukes, Ann and Lyn - good luck for your chemo this week and I hope you manage to get your cording sorted, Lyn.

Hazel, M-L, Louise and Paula - hope you're not feeling too rough after your chemo last week and have started to pick up again!

Naz, Rachy and Anita - hope you are all OK - I've lost track of where you are in the chemo cycle but send you best wishes and hope you are all having good days!

Sarah - I know you have now finished chemo - best wishes for your treatments!

Best of luck to you all and I wish you a week that is the best it can possibly be!

Love and hugs
Polly x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi everyone, the wretched broadband has been on and off all week and I've lost track of where we all are. Hope everyone has had some nice weather over the weekend, yesterday was lovely and after a wet start it's sunny here again now - let's hope it lasts for the Bank Holiday. I will have Epi 2 on Friday and I think the big 'moult' has just begun this afternoon, so will see what hair is left before deciding whether to have the cold cap again - I didn't think it was making contact at the top of my head, where all the strands are coming from :-((( Kids all in foul moods and rowing all day so I'm keeping away.

Having physio tomorrow for cording and I haven't been good about exercises in the last couple of weeks, so must try some stretches. I mean to each day but the hours fly by and the days blur into one another. I used to be on the ball yet can hardly remember the family's names now. Still lucky not to have been sick, touch wood.. Love to all. Lyn xxxxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi to everyone.

I'm late posting on here because hubby hogs the computer in the evenings! Now I've sneaked onto my daughter's laptop! I've been feeling more energetic these last three days,and have enjoyed a brisk mile-long walk in the sunshine,on tuesday.Encouraged me no end! Hair starting to fall out,and scalp beginning to feel sore today.Having a short haircut tomorrow.
Went for MRI scan yesterday,a thing I hope I never have to repeat. I found the noise of the machine almost too much to bear at a couple of points, but I do have very sensitive ears.That was even with earplugs and headphones on! Had to lie on front with arms stretched up over a pillow. I found it quite difficult.One blessing is it only took about 15 minutes.Anyway,it will be worth it to see what's going on in the other breast,hopefully only cysts,but I'm prepared for it to be bad news. I was encouraged today after having a chat with my boss at the hospital,who has said she will help me ease back in when I'm ready,maybe just do 2 hours to start with on the ward where the breast surgery is carried out. That's just what I've been thinking I'd like to do! What an answer to prayer!

Paula,Polly,Rachy,Lyn,Naz and Sukes hope you are all doing well.

Anita, so glad you've been ok after first FEC. Hope you cope alright with the loss of hair and have some good days before next is due.I'm on day 16 today (thurs).

Anyone else I've forgotten,hope you are doing well,especially now the sun is making an appearance!

Love to you all,
Ann xx

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hello Ladies, Just like to say I have had a good few days and send my happy mood to everyone on the thread. I have my 3rd epi on Monday so mood will no doubt crash then but making the most of it at the moment. My hair has been steadily coming out all week and is now shaved. I am now nearly bald !! have plaently of hats and wigs etc. to stick on top of it.
Good luck everyone

Rach xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Ladies

Hope you are all OK.

Good luck with your chemo today, Paula and M-L!
Hazel- hope you are coping OK after your first chemo.

I'm off to see the Onc tomorrow for blood tests and pre-chemo check and then have my 2nd TAC on Monday so not looking forward to next week. My hair started falling out on Tuesday (day 16) and is looking rather thin now - will ask my son to bring his hair shaver home this weekend and do the deed - I'm sure I would look better now with no hair at all! I'm off for lunch with a friend today so making the most of the last few days. It's lovely and sunny here after a very wet night so might get in a walk as well - I'm turning a blind eye to the housework!!

So to you all, I hope everyone is feeling fine - good luck to everyone who has chemo coming up and hugs to those who have just had chemo and are feeling rough.

Love
Polly x

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Friends

Hope you are all well, and making the most of the warmer weather today.

Anita - so good to her your chemo went well and that your doing ok so far, well done you, there's only one winner!!

Polly - so good to hear your doing well too, its a blessing when things start to lift and the good days return even without hair!

Rachy, - hope you are well and not suffering too much, remember we are here for you. Like you I've suffered from depression on and off for the past 15years ( I lost my brother tragically and since then its been a hard road emotionally on and off, I also had Post Natal depression after the births of both my kids, but worst wid my second, could'nt right my name or drive the car, but it does get better!!)

Sophie - hope all has gone well with your chemo today! On the hair subject I'm now completely bald after hubbie wet shaved it on sun, for me it is a relief now as the pain has gone and so has the irritation.

Lyn and Ann, i hope your having some good days before your next cycle.

Hazel,M-l,Louise, - Good luck with your chemo, i'm thinking about you all, be strong

Naz and Sukes - I do hope you are both well

Sending Love and Hugs to you all

Love Paula xxxxxx

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

The sun is out, I have managed some gardening this morning, and have to admit that I am not feeling too bad after chemo 2. Just a bit of fatigue. If it is like last time, I have the bad taste in my mouth to look forward to. I can't complain. Some of you seem to have been sufferign much more than I have. The second chemo is certainly not as stressful as the first. I knew what to expect.

Shedding my hair big time, but it is all part of the process isn'it?

Anita,
My husband was shocked by the amount I ate after a week. I had huge meals but cut down on snacking.

Good luck for the ladies starting chemo this week.

I hope you are all enjoying the weather.

Love Sophie

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi everyone

Just a quick hello to you all - hope you have had a good weekend!

Anita - Glad to hear all is well with you and you are recovering well from your chemo!

Rachy - hope you are still OK after your 2nd chemo and are managing to cope with the fatigue and everything else that hits you after chemo. Take care!

Sophie - good luck with your chemo tomorrow - will be thinking of you!

Lyn, Paula and Ann - hope you are enjoying the good time after the stress of the first chemo. I still have my hair but keep feeling it anxiously every morning when I wake up to see if its starting to go - it will probably be a relief now when its gone and I won't have to think about it any more! I have sympathy with you, Paula and your sore mouth as I've just recovered from a few days of oral thrush that was painful.

Hazel, M-L and Louise - I think you are all having chemo in the next week - best wishes and I hope all goes well!

Naz and Sukes - hope all is OK with you both?

Sorry if I've missed anyone out!
I've had a lovely weekend with my daughter and son-in-law and felt quite lost when they left today. Fortunately the weather was good again so OH and I went off for a fairly long walk on the cliffs and returned home with our spirits lifted. I am pleased to say that I feel "normal" again today with energy restored so am going to enjoy the most of it before next week and the 2nd chemo!

Good luck to you all for the next week and sleep well!
Love
Polly x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Paula

I am 8 days behind you in the FEC stakes so this time next week I am looking to be nearly hair free or shaved. My hubby has agreed to do the shaving and I bought a new pair of clippers to do it with.

I do hope that ity makes it feel better - it's sore now but not too bad.

My next Fec is due 6.5.08 and as this is the tues after the bank hol I have to have my bloods taken on the day and tested.....making the whole process longer. The same will be for the mect 3 wk cycle as this will be again after the spring bank hol - the joy of it!

I have noticed a definate change in my mouth too - my chemo nurse has said to ask my doc for a mouthwash called Difflan???....check with your doc to see if you can get it. Otherwise it is ice lollies and pineapple is supposed to be good.

Like you I am always on the go and finding days just being the same long haul of daytime tv and small walks with my dog. Hopefully the weather has to brighten up this week and we can get more like spring/summer.

All the best to all

Anita

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Sophie, Anita, Ann,Polly, Sarah, Hazel, and anyone else I've missed

Well, how cold is this weather!!, I've had a not too bad week up until Thursday,when I started sheding my hair big - time, so my mum shaved it all off for me on Thursday, leaving about an inch of stubble, which today went with a wet shave by hubbie as my scalp was so itchy and irritating!! I feel relieved in a funny sort of way because at least it will grow back now!!! It's almost another step forward to the finale I suppose, I was dreading this but it is no way a bad as I had presumed although you do feel the cold.

I'm off for FEC2 on thurs providing my bloods are ok, my neuts were only O.5 at my 10 day check up so I do hope they have inclined, but I now have a full mouth of ulcers and a cold saw on my lip - oh the joys!!

Being a district nurse, I'm not allowed to work due to the risk of infection - I find it hard being at home because I'm just not used to it. I am normally on the go, but I suppose its only short term and when the warmer days come I can spend some time in the garden or go for long walks with my dog whilst Kate's at nursery and Joe at school

Take care everyone and good luck with your hair!!

Love Paula xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi Sophie

Nice to hear from you. I'm on day 6 after first FEC and feel like my hair is not my own today...maybe from all the lying down I have been doing over the last 3 days as I seem to have developed the tiredness side effect and nothing else. Maybe it's the start of the loss - something which I have accepted - going to get hubby to shave it off when it starts properly.

The steroids have made me eat like a horse and have just sampled hubby's roast chicken, roast poatoes and veg...not bad for a beginner!!! He has been molly coddled for the last 10 years so it's a big shock to him!

I cannot work from home as I deal with all the student applications into my centre and use a database which is secure and confidential and only allowed on work computers. I am going to try and work something out with the boss as I need to keep my brain working as this stopping at home lark is driving me nuts. I will be ok by the end of June going into work as there will only be my colleagues as the students will have finished for summer - less disease too!!! I still have 23 days left annual leave to take before end of Aug so will have to work it out with my doc to sign me off so I can actually have them as paid leave then continue on sick. I only get 4 mnths full pay and 4 mnths half as I haven't been there 3 years as yet.

BUT - according to the weather - warming up by the end of this week....hubby is going to sort the patio out for me so that I can sit there and watch the world pass by whilst I am on treatment and recovery - can't wait!
speak to you soon Anita xxx

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hello ladies,
It has been very quiet over the past few days on this thread. I take it is because we are all doing so well and trying to forget BC once in a while. Tomorrow is chemo N.2... I am less nervous this time around. I sort of know what to expect. I am taking the week off work to make sure that I rest. I have started shedding my hair. My 10 year old is quite upset about it. I keep telling him that it will grow again. Well Paula is on her stand waiting...
I can't wait for some warmer weather, I want to be able to potter around the garden a bit and go walking. I just can't bear going out at the minute.

Anita,
My employer is extremely flexible and so is my work. I have a tremendous team all of whom are helping out when I am not around. I can work from home and to be honest, I am a bit of a workaholic. I really do like what I do.
It was great going to the office last week and putting some sort of normality in my life. I could have done without someone resigning, but then again life goes on for everyone.
If you fancy doing some work to keep your mind off things, talk to your employer. However if you have been signed off by your doctor, you may not be able to work even part time. No harm in checking.
Have a lovely Sunday.

Sophie

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi ladies,

Hope everyone is doing well, despite the horrible cold weather. it doesn't exactly encourage you to go out for a walk does it!!

It MUST change soon! At least we have the warmer months to look forward to, which must be easier than doing the chemo through the winter.

I shall be praying for you all, and look forward to hearing how you are over the next few days.My wig is on standby, I really, really like it. Just as well really! Hope you are all happy with yours, too. Though I expect we'll use our buffs and headscarves more than the wig in the warm weather, if we get any!

Sleep well, keep warm,
love, Ann

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

hi,
Polly, hope you have a lovely weekend. i went for a short walk just before teatime. i had five layers on my body to keep toasty warm, but was still glad to get back indoors! The fresh air was great, though. I went to our local lake, but it was too windy to sit for more than 5 mins. My daughter's boyfriend is coming to stay overnight tomorrow, so it will be nice to have a meal together. We have got a slightly dodgy tummy today ....hope it's nothing too bad,as I'm on day 9.

Anita, glad you are doing ok. Have a good weekend ,too. let's hope it gets a bit warmer!!

I'm off to collect my wig tomorrow,all being well with my tummy, otherwise maybe I'll be going to collect some antibiotics instead! I knew I shouldn't have boasted about how well I was feeling yesterday!
I'll have a look at other thread now.
Goodnight all,
Ann G

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

HI Sophie

Thanks for the information........will make sure I ask my onc on the 6th May. I have triple neg BC so not on amy hormone therapy after chemo and rads. I am really looking forward to having a break as didn't get one last year as we moved house. A week led in the sunshine sure is gonna cheer me up after this treatment and also it would be really hard to tell my 8 yr old son Jack that he couldn't go away!

How do you balance your work with chemo? I work in a very large college and don't feel like I can expose myself to all the germs the students bring in. Although I could work in an office on my own I am still unsure as to do it.

Any advice from anyone working and doing chemo?

Anita xxx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi everyone

Hope you are all feeling OK.

Sukes - I have been reading your post on another thread and know you are suffering at the moment. Just want to send you love and hugs - thinking of you and hope you are feeling brighter again very soon.

I am on day 11 now so am feeling much brighter - still taking the anti-sickness pills sometimes to settle my stomach and still have a bit of oral thrush but it's clearing up. Quite tired today after a very energetic day yesterday. I drove down to the canal near where I live and had a lovely walk and sat on a bench watching the ducks and the world go by - the weather was glorious. I only managed a walk around the block today as the wind was very cold and I'd tired myself out yesterday! I am really looking forward to the weekend as my daughter and son-in-law are coming from London tomorrow until Sunday and also my son will be home for the weekend (he is in the navy). So a lovely family weekend - I just hope they don't bring any germs with them!

Ladies, have a good weekend - keep well and hang on in there!
Love
Polly x

Re: Starting Chemo - 7th April

Hi ladies,
Anita, I asked my Onc about going to France in August. Just like you I should be finishing Mid July. She said that it was fine to go.
If you have radiotherapy after chemo, try to talk to your onc and make sure you either finish before or start after.Be aware of the sun on the area where you will have radiotherapy though. You will need to keep covered.
If you are on Herceptin, I am told that they can be flexible and make it a four weeks cycle if you are going on holiday.
You should be optimistic.

The past two days I was at work. It is nice to have some normality in life. Everyone was great. It is a small office and it feels great to feel that there is support there as well.

I just can't wait for the weather to get warmer as I really want to spend some time in my garden. It is just too cold at the minute.

Ann, good luck for the MRI. I was just wondering myself whether I should have opted for a bilateral mastectomy, as I am not keen on implant, and I am not sure I want to go through a 10 hour op for reconstruction. I will give it a year to think about it, as for the time being I need to concentrate on going through 2 more FEC, 3 TAX and 18 herceptin, with rads in between....

Take good care of yourselves everyone.
Sophie