CHEMO SESSION #3
Well, well, well…this session could not have been any more different than the last.
After the fun of last time, I was a mess before it even started. Not only was I sure that it would be as terrible as before, but, this time the appointment was in the afternoon. I would have to deal with the 7pm quitting time again.
Let me explain – a 3 o’clock appointment does not mean you are seen at 3 o’clock. First you need to get bloods drawn to check counts, then you wait. Then you wait some more and then you get shifted to the doctor’s office. Then you wait again. Now let me explain one thing: my doctor is a dream boat. If you had to have any doctor for anything then you want him. He is reassuring, positive, encouraging, brilliant, on the cutting edge of everything, absolutely divine and spends tons of time with you. No matter how long you need – he gives you the time. This is amazing when you want it BUT a nightmare when you are trying to get in and out of chemo before the nurses go home. You know he is with another patient giving them the time they need, but you kinda want him to HURRY UP. I was making myself crazy and sick with anxiety. I could hear Fern (see OM!) telling me to relax and breathe!
He finally came in to see me at 4:30. I shouted a few things at him: about drinking aloe vera (was not sure), taking acidophilusorally (no), if more of my hair would fall out (couldn’t answer but said that sometimes it starts to grow back before chemo is done – weird but exciting) and asked about yeast infections (yes – women get them loads during chemo.) My blood count has dipped slightly but was normal. Skin slowly getting better. . I rushed him to answer but it was still after 5pm when we finished. Two hour warning.
This time, I knew to ask for a room with a window and I got it, even though I felt like a princess asking. Who cares?
No Reiki volunteers to calm me this time, stressed and a mess was I. Then Katie, the nurse, walked in. She was instantly calming. She put in the IV no problem without any pain and then the drugs followed, pain free, as well. The dastardly D of my cocktail was made better because Katie took the time to put two heating pads on the IV and my upper arm. She told me to ask for new ones when they got cool and to make sure I got them every time. She brought me water and graham crackers without asking. The whole thing was done in record time with FABULOUS Louboutins on. Left way before 7pm and was on my way home with the summer sun high in the sky.
A few things made this session bearable and they are completely do-able.
1. PLAY PRINCESS
It’s ok to be demanding sometimes. If you feel better with a window, then ask for a window. If a nurse gave you a heating pad the last time, it’s ok to ask for one again. Also, if you bond with a certain nurse, ask for her. This is a sucky time in your life, if a few things make it better then ask.
2. TIMING IS EVERYTHING
Decide your own fate by booking chemo appointments when they are good for you. If you know your doctor likes to chat and the nurses leave at 7, then book an early appointment. There is already too much stress involved to begin with, don’t add more on like I did.
Everything you learned from Mindful Meditation and Yoga, use it!!! There is a reason we study these things!
NEXT POST: INTIMACY & FRIENDSHIP – it might even rival 50 Shades of you know what!
So glad you had a better experience this time, Suz! Thinking of you lots. xo S
Thanks so much sweetie – ME TOO!!
I like your GOODS this week, particularly the one about playing princess and asking for exactly what you need to reduce the stress. Also, while they give you a chemo schedule at the start (at least, at my hospital they did), it turned out to be fine to rearrange things. Well worth following up.
Glad things went easier this time. I hope you are recovering as best as possible.