Relief

Yesterday was blood work and treatment day. My white and red cell counts are good and holding steady, and blood chemistries, platelets, and everything else is good, too. So I had my 2nd dose of maintenance Pemetrexed. One thing that the nurses pointed out was my red cheeks and neck, which evidently is a side effect from the steroids I’m having to take the day before, day of, and day after my treatment. I was anxious about the CEA level as it was starting to inch up a bit the last time we checked it. But the result wasn’t available until this morning. My PA called to let me know it had gone from 25.1 to 20 – I could have hugged her over the phone!

I can’t begin to tell you how relieved my partner and I are about this reduction. I was really nervous about it, especially since I’ve developed a dry cough and am having to use the Ventolin again. I’m thinking, and my PA concurred, that it’s probably allergies. March here in the desert is usually windy, and this March is no different. We had sustained 15-20 mph winds on Sunday with heavier gusts, and it’s been breezy ever since. The pollen count is in the extreme range, and will stay that way for a while. So I’m optimistic it’s just allergies. My lungs sound clear with no dead spots, no wheezing, just normal breath sounds. And that’s another relief because the primary tumor had caused lung collapse in the left upper lobe that has since re-inflated.

Now because the CEA is going down, and if it continues to go down or remain stable, I won’t need to have the PET/CT scan until after another 2 or 3 treatments – another relief. And I’m glad I picked the Medicare plan I did, because there are no co-pays and no deductibles; those were adding up a lot on my old insurance.

So today is all good news. And my rose bushes are budding like crazy!

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9 thoughts on “Relief

  1. Terrific, all the way around. Interesting that you mention the allergies. Once the wind began blowing last night, I began experiencing the same sort of symptoms — itchy and irritated eyes, a sore throat, a bit headachy. It’s that time of year.

    I came across this article and thought you might enjoy it. It’s well written, and entertaining in the way that close-to-the-bone articles always are.

  2. I can relate to the procrastination part. When I was in grad school, all my research papers were usually written the weekend before they were due. My Master’s thesis was researched and written over Spring Break in my 2nd year – 10 days of 14-16 hour days. Why did I do that to myself? I don’t know. I do know that I seem to do my best work under pressure. And I don’t have to think too much about what I’m writing – especially if it’s fiction. I see myself more as a conduit than an author – if that makes sense. 🙂

Ruth passed away from cancer. Please remove from list

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