Early on I wrote that hearing you have cancer is really surpassed when you hear the word that comes next. In my case the word was “chemotherapy.”
I had my second treatment Thursday, May 21, and had a pretty awful weekend. I should add the disclaimer that the thing has been overblown. Now don’t get me wrong, Chemo is awful, debilitating, sickening and more. But modern medicine has come a long way in minimizing the side effects.
Nearly everyone had me convinced I would spend 2-3 days wrapped around a toilet vomiting and fighting diarrhea. That just hasn’t happened. And the more I get into this the more I’ve learned the oncology world has learned how to minimize some pretty awful side effects.
That said, the nausea is awful and I had my worst day of the process Saturday – all day. Sunday was slightly better – then Monday was worse, though not as bad as Saturday.
If I can break it down – you feel terribly tired, toxic, mild headache, nauseated, and yuck mouth. Yuck mouth is an extremely dry mouth condition which leads to nothing you eat or drink tasting normal. It does not go away easily. I continue to deal with that other condition that is very uncomfortable – that I wrote about previously.
Yes, I am using Biotene – a non-alcohol based mouthwash – and it helps the yuck mouth. But frankly, it doesn’t last very long.
I just wrote my co-workers this morning explaining I failed to learn a lesson from my first round of Chemo and that is a routine helps. I laid around all day Monday feeling awful, alone, but not necessarily sorry for myself. I have refused to do that.
What I remember is I did best when I had a routine. My days always seem better when I get up, have coffee, take a shower, do some tasks around the house, take a walk – or just do what I can do. So I’m back on that kick today.
Yes Chemo sucks – you just can’t let it win.