After that little pondering session in my last post, I was still clueless about what might come, running over me like a dump truck.
I was waiting for the doctor to call with results but figured what with the weekend and then a holiday, it might be Tuesday before I would know.
Sunday, early afternoon, I was watching this great show on T.V. when the phone rang. Unsuspecting of anything, only mildly curious who it might be (I canceled caller ID since it’s over $10.00 a mos.), I heard a long-forgotten voice of my former local doctor. He asked pleasantly how I was doing. He’d given up Private Practise to work at the hospital, so I didn’t even know he was still involved but then, he been still listed as my Primary Physician and he got the results. He always works on weekends at the office, clearing things up.
He told me, he as looking at the result and it was NOT good. At this point, my breathing became shallow. He continued to say that the tumor had increased and pressing on that veine and it would cut off my blood supply to legs. Worse, the return of said blood supply would be near impossible and legs would fill with fluidds and that would be disastrous. My CA 125 blood test had risen to 159. Nearly 2.5 times higher than previous. Alright! He now had not only my attention, he had me scared to death. All I could think of was: I already booked a flight to Seattle and then a flight (with frequent flyer miles) to Germany.
He said I could not go because this tumor was creating big problems and I had new ‘spots’ on my lung and liver. He urged me to have chemo. He said that I would be fine, that a lot was different than last time. That I was in good shape and that my Immune system was great and I could live ‘forever’. (Now there’s a lie 🙂 I said I didn’t want to live forever but a little longer.
When we hung up, I was shaking and my brain was truly fuzzy. I nearly hyperventilated with fear of CHEMO! I called my son who told me he would come.
I cancelled my flights, barely being able to talk. I thought I was in a real dangerous place and my system kicked in with that ‘flight for life’ response. Only, I wanted to run away. (Yea. And then what??)
Cameron arrived and then called Oncologist’s answering service for her to give us a call back.
I called my family and told them I could not come after all. Set off this upsetting motion.
Then everything went very fast. Hardly time to think. Met with the Oncologist Tuesday, early morning. When she came in, the first thing she said, was “Who scared you to death?”
Although things do need to be dealt with, she was NOT as dire as my local doctor made things out to be. I was really angry that I fell for this, in the end. He’s been trying to scare me into chemo for nearly 3 years and now, that’s where we are. But, for these reasons. The tumor on that vein does need to go. We can’t do any other localized treatment because there are a few spots and they need to be gotten at once. I do not want to have to worry about this on and on and on. She promised that this would be ‘gentler’. Funny, that. To use in the same sentence as ‘chemo’. We will do a lower dose of carboplatin and Toxil, same stuff I had last time. Once a week but for longer. I ‘may’ have constipation or diarrhea. I may be nauseated, I may get neuropathy (very painful) but all in all I will be fine! (In what way has chemo changed?? Sounds like the same horrible side effects I had!) Except this timeI have marijuana for the nausea. A few, little pills she had called in are $91.00. Pot is cheaper, better with no side effects. It is a NATURAL plant.
I had finally got the Diverticulosis under control where everything worked well. But, I do have pains in my lower back now, where tumor sits. So, I am now symptomatic. This bitter cup does not pass me by. I can’t be ignoring things just because I want it to be different. Could I have waited another few months? Possibly but then, perhaps would have had more unpleasantness to deal with.
Friends are gathering with their love and support, like a beautiful coat. My son will be
here this time to help as well.
But look, I say. How many things I have done those last 3 years, while running away from chemo? Germany, Holland Venice. The following year, Camino de Santiago. Wow! Would have never done this except for cancer. Cameron says, there will be another camino now. The North Route. It’s just as long, perhaps even a little longer. But, I don’t have to do the whole thing.
I am calmer now that the decision is made. At the same time, I started to juice Marijuana leaves. Went to Dispensary and got me some fresh leaves. I washed them and juiced them with a little apple juice to sweeten the bitter taste. Only a couple of ounces. I would have needed 40 days for this treatment. There are lots of great testimonials about this.
I made a wholesome Lentil stew with Kale leaves. Then drank my juice. It was pleasant. The name not so much. This strain is called “Agent Orange’. Good thing I am not superstitious.
So family and friends, we have started a new journey. A detour I had not planned and am so reluctant to go. But, I can’t fight the chemo otherwise it’ll be that much harder to tolerate. Friday morning I will go to the hospital to have to port placed (in my chest.) They put you into a Twilight sleep, as they do with Colonoscopies. Tuesday then, is my first chemo.’
( It occurred to me, that maybe I need to change blog name? camino not chemo only fitted for 3 years.. Now, that I have to have it, what name can I choose?)