I’m super excited (and slightly exhausted at the thought) that on Monday, I’ll be having the fourth (and last) of my AC chemo sessions!
This morning, Monique (my nurse) gave the green light to go ahead, based on the assumption that my bloods come back ok. I had my blood test just before I saw her, and by the time I got to her office, some of the results were already back. The most important one is my immune system, which apparently needs to be a minimum reading of 1.0 to go ahead, and mine is currently 2.4 so we’re good on that one! The other results (white cell count, red cells, platelets etc) are still to come back, but based on how I appeared this morning, she’s hopeful these will also be fine.
(UPDATE: stats now in, see below!)
This stuff really interests me; partly because I just like numbers, but also because it’s a metric – an actual number or scale which I can use to measure how well I am. It’s hard to compare one day or week or cycle to the next, because there are so many variables in the mix… how much water I’ve drunk, how much sleep I’ve had, how much exercise I’ve done, what food I’ve eaten, how often I’ve been to work etc. So having a number will let me track my progress.
Monique also checked the lump again this morning, and again found it hard to determine the edges. This is no change from last time, but she did think it felt softer, which is apparently a good thing! We also now have a date for my next MRI (Jan 4th) so at that point we’ll get a real sense of what impact the first round of chemo has had.
I also got more info on the second round of chemo that kicks off on Jan 2nd. There are different side effects with this one, generally less impactful (certainly in terms of sickness) but there’s one main difference, which is that the new drugs will damage my nerve endings. This means it’s likely I’ll loose feeling in my toes and fingertips. We won’t know to what extent this will affect me until we get into it, but the feeling can come back in time, so I’m hopeful it’s just another speed bump, and not something which will stay long term.
Finally (and for me, a biggie!) I asked about surgery. This is likely to come 4-6 weeks after the second round of chemo finishes. So assuming we have no holdups, this will be towards the end of April. You know what’s coming…! Given how good I felt after my US trip, and how it helped me kick off my treatment as strong as possible… (insert further justification here if required!) …I asked if I’m able to go away on holiday between chemo and surgery. Apparently this is something a lot of patients do, for the exact reasons I gave. So yes, that bikini will be coming out again before surgery! Yes, I may squeeze in an F1 race early in the season! And yes, I am VERY happy about all of the above!
So bring on chemo 4 on Monday, and throw at me whatever you have left – you can wipe me out for a day or keep me in bed all week, I don’t care! This is your last hit, and I am still standing! So do your worst, because I WILL beat you again, and will bounce back to enjoy Christmas and start planning my next trip!