We have good news and bad news.
The bad news is is that my white blood count dropped to 1,500 this week (down from 2,400 the week before). But the good news is that I got my chemo anyway. With only one more week to go in this round of chemo I’m just eager to get it done with and see the results of my first set of scans. Luckily, Dr. K is on the same page.
The other beautiful thing about yesterday’s appointment was that both Auntie L and hubby got to join me. Hubby finally got to meet the fabulous Dr. K and my kick-ass nurses! And I had the pleasure of having two of my favorite people there with me – A nice change since I usually fly solo to all my doctor’s appointments and chemo sessions and scans. Dr. K was kind enough to sit with us for over half an hour – patiently answering questions and discussing plans for the months ahead. He is such a kind and caring doctor. I’m so glad I went with my gut feeling and chose him.
So I’ve agreed to suck it up and take one more shot of the Leukine to boost my white blood count. Hopefully that’ll keep my counts high enough to get my last dose of chemo next week and keep things on schedule. If all goes according to plan it’ll be scans the following week… Results shortly thereafter… And then a break from chemoland with a fabulous trip to visit my “crew” in Toronto for a week or two with Miss M. Woohoo!!!
Our visit with Dr. K yesterday reminded me of how endless this process is. How I’ll be forced to manage my illness and symptoms for years and years to come. How metastatic disease is so different from early stage breast cancer.
I think one of the most difficult things for me to swallow about my new life with metastatic BC is the reality that I will likely be on some type of pharmaceutical drug for the rest of my life. Endless rounds of different chemo drugs… hormone treatments… targeted therapies… A tough pill to swallow for this “all natural” girl.
So yes, I’m almost done my first round of chemo. Yay! But even though I applaud this first step I also realize there is so much more to come. And although I feel pretty damn good these days, I may not always feel this way.
The truth is that when I allow myself to think about how devastating stage IV breast cancer can be, my heart beats a little faster. A sensation of terror flows through me. I get scared.
So I try not to think about how bad things could be and instead focus on the success stories. Like Katherine Russell Rich who has been living with metastatic breast cancer for almost 20 years now. Listen to her radio interview on This American Life. These are the people that keep me going. That keep hope alive.
I have to keep hope alive.
Peace. – T