4 cycle itch

October 30, 2009 erinmcgrathwo

Let me sum up the past several months as being a weird process of symptoms and chemo.  The ICE chemo is awful. I mean this stuff is so toxic. Even thinking about it now and this ridiculously huge glass bottle the 24-hour infusion comes in makes my stomach turn.

The road has been bumpy. ICE has given me lots of side effects. Lots of vomiting and not wanting to eat. Lots of drops in my counts. My whole life revolves around my CBC and Type and Screen. These are the two blood tests I have over and over again. CBC = complete blood count and the Type and Screen to match what blood I’ll need. I’ve had 3 platelet transfusions, I think something like 5 blood transfusions now. My body has been struggling to make the red blood cells and I’ve been anemic over and over, which means tired and worn out. The last big drop ended up with me having black dots in my vision, my platelet count had dropped so slow the bleeds in my eyes couldn’t be plugged up. This came at an extreme in opportune time, when Sam and I were supposed to go away for the weekend. Cancer has taught me to be flexible. Roll with the punches so-to-speak.

Anyways, its been a series of trouble shooting symptoms, fevers, blood, infections, and postponing chemo so having it a month apart. The ICE has beat my body up, that’s how my doctor put it. That my body is tired and abused. But I am still surviving! Still doing law school, still running the Women’s law group still refuse to lie down and give cancer the upper hand. Screw that.

I have now made it through 4 cycles of the ICE. So I am now approaching the BIG PET SCAN. This scan will show what’s going on inside, how much of the cancer has been killed by the treatment and how to move forward. My doctors are being really positive about the results, I am being cautious. I keep thinking about how my other PET scans in the beginning (May?!) were showing progress and then BAM my body just stop responding to treatment. Its hard to learn how to trust your own body when its tricked you time and time again. I want to feel this positivity but I don’t want to be let down by my body again. What a bizarre thing to have this relationship with your own body.

So after the PET scan we’ll have a good picture of what my treatment will look like going forward, if I’ll move towards stem cell transplant (if my PET scan is clean, meaning no cancer) or do more Chemo and maybe a different kind to keep fighting it. The road has felt very long.


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One Comment Add your own

  • 1. Emilie Manhart  |  November 4, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    Dear dear Erin,
    Thank you for the update…. been thinking about you. please keep us posted on the next test and the rest of the plan. Sending you much love and strength. You are amazing!

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