My every-other Friday date begins by arriving at the cancer center with a load full of stuff; it really looks like we are moving in with the amount of stuff we have. However, we assure the nurses that despite the huge bags we are bringing with us, we will not be staying. This time I reserved a private room for treatment. In the group room you are permitted only one guest. Yet, Janie and Sarah, my cousin who is a P.A. in Atlanta (I have been proudly showing her off and telling everyone that she is a P.A. so I thought I would tell you), wanted to hang out with me on this chemo day and my nurse was happy to accommodate. So we arrived and another nurse took my vital signs. Meanwhile, Janie started to turn on some rap music to really get this party started up in here.
Here at the treatment offices every patient is assigned a nurse that will be with you every day of your treatment. My nurse is a wonderful, bubbly lady named Trish. When I say wonderful I mean that she is absolutely amazing and makes me smile every time I come in. She begins my bloodwork to see how my levels are and if I can accept treatment. After the labs come back she starts my IV and brings in my "goody bag", three drugs that combat nausea. After those settle in, the chemo begins.
For my type of cancer, there is a standard treatment ABVD. It is four drugs that are put into my IV line one after the other. Therefore it is just sitting and waiting for them to drip in. Some are what they call a "push" where my nurse puts a syringe full of the drug in my IV line over a certain amount of time. This allows for great talk time with my awesome nurse! One of the drugs is red and is known as the "Red Devil." It causes the fatigue and hair loss. It is the doozy! Right now I am on my last drug which takes two hours to drip in. Then the nurse will change the dressing on my PICC line (which is basically a catheter in my arm and is a God-send when it comes to drawing blood) and we will be out of here! Afterwards I just get really sleepy. Later comes the fatigue, about one or two days later.
Today has been a great day and the last few days have been awesome too. Praise God for giving me strength and for giving me joy after several not-so-joyful days. It is so great to see how God, who is our ultimate joy, gives us an all-satisfying joy in Himself.
That basically sums it up. Again, thank you for your prayers and as always...thank you for reading.