CDC Symptom Diary Card

Monday, June 25, 2012

4th Chemo kicking my behind

My mom with Kate, at the NBC Today Show.  Kate was our producer, so sweet.  My mom still beats down the doors of diabetes every day, and wins!
I painted this little fish when I was on chemo in 2010.  I just love the  blue.

As I sit here drenched because of the side effects I wonder why I don't look like a swimsuit model.  I just can't explain how ridiculously sick I have felt since last Monday.  Actually, yesterday was a good day and this morning I am faring "ok".  

My sister took me home from the hospital last Tuesday after another round of Carboplatin via a desensitization protocol, and I was thinking "I'm good". She bought me a soy vanilla latte ( I know, bad soy bad soy).  I can't remember much after she left, except to say that all week I was very short of breath.

All week I got drenched in sweats and would have bad nausea, be unable to breathe well, and just super tired.  I hardly drank a thing for three days, big NO NO.  I did the best I could. I took my meds like I was supposed to, oh well.  I am on the up side of the recovery now, whew.

Yesterday was the first day I had a cup of coffee.

My mom and aunt were so sweet to come over Thursday night because I couldn't function.  I was crying because I couldn't catch my breath.  It wasn't like I needed 911, it was just a knowingness that my body was having a hard time with the chemo.  Harder than last time.

Today I am so lucky that I feel well enough, I can go with my mom to her rehab and spend some precious time with my aunt.  

I only have two more chemotherapy treatments to go.  Strangely my CA125 marker is slightly rising.  Not sure what it means because my gyn onc stated that the marker is not reliable.  When my recurrence was diagnosed, it was 15.  15 is a dream number, a great number, if you are not in a recurrence.  So for me, 15 is not good.  It was 38 at the end of May.  I try not to obsess about numbers, but hmmmmmmmm.  

So today is a great new day.  I am thinking about some friends, one who's mom and brother are ill.  One who is having her hip replaced and another who will be having brain surgery in a few days.  

We just need to keep looking forward and doing the best we can.  I feel so so so blessed that I get to talk with my family every day, or send a little text, or look at a few photos.  And, I have this sweet little cat named Marilyn, who stays within 5 feet of me all day long.  How bad can this life be?

Love you all.........................

Monday, June 18, 2012

More on New York, it stays with you always

Mom on the way to New York City May 7, 2012

Our cabbie was a great driver

The NBC Today Show Studio crawl
Me with the producer and her camera ladies...yay

Kate in the middle with her camera ladies
Mom enjoying the 360 degree View Restaurant, what a spectacular way to see New York
In New York, everything is big and tall

A view from "The View"

More views
And another view

A view once more

Things sure look small down there

Times Square

Times Square

Our first look at the city, arriving late into the evening

Mom and I have yet to take our little get away on Bainbridge Island, but we will soon.  It's just been a whacky time since we got back.  It took forever for me to even find photos because I had lost my cell phone at JFK airport.  Luckily I got it back.  Mom had severely bruised her tail bone getting into a cab that Tuesday and we spent all of Wed handling that.

As it turns out, mom had the ride of her life on a pedi-cab the day before the show.  She was in awful pain and finally we decided to go into a clinic.  Kate was such a gem helping us out with all of this, but getting there was crazy.

In New York they say take a cab everywhere.  Seems harmless....NOT. You can't catch a cab on smaller side streets, you have to walk to a busy corner.  My poor mom, walking around with me trying to find a cab.  So after one cabbie refused to take us...seriously.....this wonderful Irishman with bright blue eyes came up to us in his little pedi-cab and asked if we needed a ride.

I have to tell ya, I was not real confident in that, as the day before I saw pedi-cab race across four lanes of heavy traffic practically tipping the whole thing over.  Mom was excited.  We explained that she was in tremendous pain and that we were on our way to an urgent care clinic.  He promised me that he would go slow and take good care of my mom.  So we got in and held on...weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Mom laughed and laughed and laughed and laughed and laughed.  She said that was exactly what she needed.  It was also a great way to see the city.  I have a small video clip of our ride...........

It was a trip of a lifetime and we will never forget it.  Thank you Kathie Lee Gifford, Hoda Kotb and Kate for hosting us.  Thank you to David Friedman, Chandra Lee Schwartz, Davy Wild, and of course Kathie Lee Gifford for creating such a beautiful song "Strong Like You" from me to my mom.

Here it is over a month has gone by.  I go into the hospital tomorrow for my 4th round of chemotherapy desensitization.  I went chemo shopping today for soups, veggies, yogurt, etc etc etc.  Of course I forgot my colace and flax seeds.  I just want it over with.  Not looking forward to almost 10 days of bad nausea.

I have been sleeping 12 hours per day for a long time.

Mom has been in hospital twice since the trip.  Geeze.  She can't catch a break but looked great today.  She is just a real trooper.  She is all excited because her sister is coming out to visit.

My sweet sister is finally up and around again, the whole family dealing with whooping cough.  Can you imagine?

Several of our teal sisters have passed away this past month, and that is really hard.  I pray for their families and hope that they can keep the conversation going.

Every day can be rich with life, the little joys and the small smiles that really warm your heart....that is what we need to look for each day.  Can't worry too much about what may or may not come.

I have a beautiful and loving family, a kitty cat that just gives me pure joy and I think she is happy too.  I have really nice friends and most of all I have God.  We all have Him there to love us and carry our pains.

I love you all......................Denise