Chemo #3 On Autopilot

Didn’t even need an appt. with Flash this am. All looks as it should apparently because I was handed my slip and told to go on back. We had two techs and three unsuccessful stabs to get the IV in, but finally I had Flash ok 2 mg of morphine which I took in the upper arm as an injection, and that loosened things up where she could get a needle in. I have always had very tough veins and now, it’s of course, worse. However, there are still ladies on the hospital campus that get me on the first stick. The gals at the Med Lab of course are the best, but there are some good ones now at Flash’s office as well. Personnel changes over there for the better IMHO, so I’m not kicking too much. The morphine masks the pain of having a needle wiggled round in and out, and let’s the techs make for a better vein entry. Midway through the four hours, before the Taxol, I have them give me 2 mg Morphine stat, and from that point I don’t even feel the injection. It aids with afterwards as well, because I find I have appetite. The small amt. wears off by mid-evening, and I sleep really well. This chemo experience is very very different from the last one, even though save for two we are using the same drugs. I got Avastin today as well, so we should see even more improvement this week.

It’s clouded over here a bit and some storms may blow in, Hubby and I are both ready to collapse. We got to the clinic at 9:10 am and didn’t leave until 2 pm, that’s a long slog. It took a full hour just to get the IV needle in and both my fave techs were really bummed it wasn’t a first time shot, but some days you can’t have it all.

In terms of side effects, to date the worst has been fatigue. Fatigue that goes with Chemo is unlike about anything else I’ve ever experienced. When it kicks in, it’s like someone throws a light switch, you just want to put your head on something soft and start sleeping. It can hit anytime during the day or night. I’ve started eating every couple hours, at least 150 calories, nearly round the clock, mostly because I’m genuinely hungry, and it seems to be energizing me a bit. What am I eating? As usual, my appetite is all over the map. Puddings: Rice pudding, Tapioca, butterscotch, and a few other flavors to try; curries (which hubby makes wonderfully!); breakfast sausage, egg, and cheese sammies; soups of all kinds, noodles, in general things that I seem to be craving now and like a lot.

Some childhood faves returning: Turtles candies, these days I’m no chocoholic but seem to be craving this particular treat, creme caramels, bullseyes, and some shortbread cookies. Lots of Ocean Spray Ruby Red and Ruby Tangerine juices. Lots and Lots of Mac n’ cheese. We are trying products people buy for their lunches to which you just add water. I’m pleased to say quite a few of them are pretty tasty and are just the right portion size.

Next week I’ll be in for more Bloodwork and my Zometa treatment, so it ought to go smoothly.

Joule Watt


2 Responses to “Chemo #3 On Autopilot”

  1. jeanni17 Says:

    Leanne, I have been reading your posts and sending you prayers. I am so afraid of needles, dont know how you do it! I have not forgotten your plight and wish you strength and healing. Love you. Jeanni

  2. Thanks Jeanni, and to all my old high school buddies. My wish for you all is that you don’t have to go through any of this ever, and that the rest of your lives are happy and comfortable! Lucky for me, I’m not afraid of needles, but I do wish some were better designed! Veins are nice and round, and they do wiggle. Because of my history as a bodybuilder mine happen to be fairly tough as well, so it’s always a challenge getting the right spot to start my IV. We got something very cool figured out yesterday though, and that is that by going up higher on the arm toward the elbow the veins are bigger and the needle (which has a shunt around it) can puncture the vein wall better. The nurse also remarked that in her opinion these particular needles seems pretty dull. I had to agree, though to her credit she got it started with the first stick. So that was all good. Try to get over your fear of needles, they are very small compared to the rest of you, and there are plenty of numbing agents that can be used to make the procedure painless, even if they have to be in for several hours like in chemotherapy. The benefits far outweigh the horrible parts so it is better to stay on top of it all in case its a medical procedure you need to use.

    Remember, kiddo, we were chemistry lab partners! And successful ones at that!

    Your dear friend

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