Saturday, April 20, 2013

For the Love of Hair

It's been a while since I've blogged.  I think about blogging frequently but then I just don't do it.  Now I'm at the point where I have so many thoughts that I'd like to share that I have no idea where to begin.  I guess I'll begin with what weighs most heavily on my heart.

The cancer center is not a place you want to run into your friends.  Thursday on my way out of radiation I ran into one of my friends.  She has been battling Lymphoma for around 10 years.  Thursday when I ran into her, she had just received really crappy news.  The cancer has returned with a vengeance.

Last summer while I was still pregnant and going through chemotherapy, I came into contact with another woman who was going through chemo during her pregnancy too.  She was the first pregnant cancer patient I connected with.  We went through our pregnancies and treatment together.  She delivered her baby boy in January and had clear scans in January as well.  Two weeks ago she received the news that the cancer is back and has metastasized to her bones.

My heart is broken for my two friends.  I am so angry for them.  They have both already been through enough physical suffering.  They shouldn't have to do this go through the physical trauma of chemo or the emotional trauma that comes along with cancer and treatment. Then there's part of me that worries for myself.  Every little pain... is it cancer?  I don't dwell on those thoughts too much but they are there... nagging at me in the back of my mind.

Radiation is going pretty well.  I finished number 23 on Friday.  I thought I was going to have 30 radiation treatments but it turns out I was wrong.  I'm actually going to have 35-37.  So far I have a large red square on my back and on my chest.  I have a red strip on my neck as well.  They are radiating the entire chest wall on my right side, the lymph nodes in my axilla (arm pit), and the lymph nodes in my neck.  The burns hurt but it's not as bad as I expected it to be.  Then again, we'll see what I'm saying in another week as the symptoms continue to worsen.

Hair is beautiful.  I love hair.  The hair on my head, eyebrows, eyelashes, and even nose hair... I love it all!  You never know how great nose hairs are until you don't have any.  Those are handy little suckers!  I am happy to say that I now have hair on my head, short stubby eyelashes and eyebrows that are growing in thicker than ever.  I wish the hair on my head was coming in as thick as my eyebrows are.  I've never been one to appreciate bushy eyebrows but you won't hear any complaining from me.  Bushy eyebrows can be tamed.

My last rounds of chemo left me with neuropathy in my fingers and I started to get bruises under my fingernails.  Well, the bruising caused about 2/3 of my fingernail to detach from the skin.  It's hideous to look at so I keep my nails painted these days.  The other day I removed the polish and took a picture.  Here are a couple of pictures of the crappy side effects of chemo.

My fingernails at the end of chemo when the bruising had just begun.

Fingernails discolored from chemo and detached from the skin (2 1/2 months after chemo ended)

Brows and lashes almost completely gone.  A few days later the rest of the eyebrow hair fell out.
Zeek has been sick for the past week.  Last weekend he started wheezing so Monday I took him to the doctor.  He had to have a breathing treatment.  It was pretty sad but he did well.  The doctor referred to him as a "happy wheezer".  It's true.  Even when he's sick he is still full of smiles.  He is such a little blessing.

Zeek getting his breathing treatment.
Thank you for your prayers.  Only a couple weeks left of treatment and then I can get back to growing hair and getting sunburns the good old fashioned way.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, Rebecca, I sorrow with you for your friends. It's true...bad things happen to good people! Hang in there with the rads and the nails and hair--one will be over before you know it, and the others will be back before you know it. Praying for you! Katy