Monday, July 26, 2010

Update 7/26/10 Working & Working Out

I got up at 5:45 this morning, about 30 mins later than I usually wake up.  This was a concession on Julie's part, she had planned a longer run for Bica and herself since we had a system come through on Sunday and lower the temp a little.  But I was feeling better Sunday night and wanted to give a short run a try, but I also wanted to sleep in a little.  Julie didn't mind, of course, she was just worried I wouldn't be up to a run, even a short one.

By 5:45 I was really already awake.  I slept most of the night soundly, but woke up sometime before the alarm, probably 5:15 (the time we would have gotten up normally) feeling a little nauseated and out of  it, but not bad.  Bica stirred as I drank some water, but didn't come to bed as she sometimes will when it's close to wake-up time.  I fell back asleep and when the alarm went off the nausea was gone.

I did go for that run with Julie and Bica, and it felt good.  Temperature was much more comfortable than it had been, and being laid up had rested my weary legs.  We didn't run far, 2.5 miles at the most.  But I ran it well, and took Bica on a romp through the grass to chase an angry flock of geese.  When we got back home I did my usual stretches, although not as hard as usual, and couple of sets of push-ups.  Any stretch that engages my stomach muscles would cause me to feel a little nausea and to burp, but otherwise it felt fine.

I showered and shaved off my 5 day beard, had my normal cereal & fruit breakfast (but with just one cup of coffee instead of my normal 4-5 cups), then got ready for work.  I didn't feel bad, best I've felt since the chemo really, but I knew I'd get tired before the end of the day.  Work wasn't bad, everyone was happy to see me and asked how things were.  I told them I was likely to go home early, and sure enough, by 1 pm I was fading fast.  I stuck around until almost 2:15, then came home and walked Bica for several blocks.

I suspect my schedule will be that way the rest of this week.  Upcoming events are as follows:
  • Wed (7/28) I have to go to the drs office in the morning to have blood drawn.  Should only be a little late for work
  • Fri (7/30) I have my first follow up drs appt at 3:15 to see how my blood looks, and how I'm feeling overall
This next part could have been its own post, but I'll just throw it in here to cover the last few days.

Sat afternoon (when I wanted meatballs) one of our friends in VA offered to pick up Peruvian chicken from a place by them that Julie & I love. I was feeling so sick, but still somewhat hungry, so I said yes to that so long as they didn't mind just dropping it off. I didn't want to see anyone.

Well they brought over a whole chicken, fried yucca, plantains, and beans & rice. Julie went downstairs to pick it up from our friend, and I set up places to eat and queued up the most recent episode of Burn Notice on Hulu. Julie set the food down in front of me and went to go get drinks, while waiting I ate one piece of yucca and immediately felt horrible; I was sure that was all I was eating of that meal.

But then something happened, the feeling passed, and I ate with gusto. More than 1/2 a chicken, 1/2 of the yucca, a few plantains. All went down, and not just down but I really wanted even more, but I could tell it would be a bad idea, I didn't want to push my luck.

I didn't feel 100%, but significantly better. Later than night I ate half of the leftover beans and rice for dinner. Sunday morning I felt decent, but a little queasy.  Breakfast was again cheese eggs, but this time Julie fried up bacon too.  Normally I love bacon, but this time the smell really put me off, I'm not sure when I'll eat bacon again.

Sunday night Julie finally got me the spaghetti & meatballs I'd been asking for since Saturday (Peruvian Chicken preempted my meatball craving) and I ate all of that & a little pizza too. Food was now going down much better, and I was seldom feeling any nausea.  Went to bed early Sunday night.  And well, you know the rest from my update at the top of this post.

I still burp and make other nasty sounds, it will be a while before my stomach is back to being completely normal. The part I hate now is not knowing what is next, and I really don't think the drs/nurses know what to expect either.  They can tell you what to expect when you are on a chemo course that lasts several weeks or months, but just one dose?  I don't think any of them have any experience with this.  The Dr did not think the symptoms would be bad because the chemo won't be building up in my system the way it does for people who get several doses, every week or so. 

But I'm always aware (and the doctor stressed often) that my chemo was a huge dose comparatively.  The doctor & nurses repeatedly told me it was a big one, and that the symptoms could be bad.  While I was waiting for the chemo on Wednesday (I left this out that day, so my family reading the blog wouldn't worry even more than they already were) I could hear the nurse whispering to the doctor in another room about how much chemo this was; NURSE "this is a really big dose, are you sure?"  Doctor "we have to follow the guidelines laid out for treatment."

Not what you want to hear when you are sitting down to your first (and I pray, last) chemo treatment.  So the nausea might be leaving, but who knows what is next?  Mouth sores?  Low red/white blood cells?  Much worse fatigue?  The ever-present in my mind hair loss?  We'll see, I'll keep updating.

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