09 – Hats, Hats and More Hats!

It amazes me how quickly two weeks can pass by!  I almost feel like my posts aren’t that big of a deal anymore because I’m doing so well…..  but for those of you that want the skinny….. here goes!

St. George was a wonderful retreat for me.  I thoroughly enjoyed it.  It would have only been better had we been able to stay that second week like we normally do….. but…. it was treatment time again!

We actually took the time to go visit our son, Jon on Sunday night after we got back.  Since we weren’t here for his surgery earlier in the week, we needed to go see how he was doing.  He’s doing well.  By now he’s even back to work.  I was so grateful for how supportive my other son and daughter were to him while we were gone.  We’re also grateful that things went as well as they did and that he will need no further treatments!  Life is good!

On Monday, we went out to Centerpoint Theater to see “The Scarlet Pimpernel”.  I’m not going to lie…. I was a little worried.  Our production of “Little Women” was so well done, I knew they had big shoes to fill in order to keep up to that level.  I know that sounds conceited…. but the theater needs to maintain the high quality of shows in order to increase their subscribers and patronage.  I was pleased.  They did a fine job.  It’s such a different story line than Little Women is that you can’t really compare it in many ways, but their show was well done.  It was an enjoyable evening.

My last treatment was on Oct 16th.  Once again, I had a little longer break between treatments with the week in St. George.  We met with Dr. Litton before the treatment so he could see how I was doing.  I told him I really believe that the cancer is gone.  I’ve been feeling so well, I just believe it’s gone!  He said that he wouldn’t be surprised if it was.  I was  a little disappointed with that response from him.  I know that sounds funny….. but I really feel like one of the reasons it’s gone is because of  the supplements I’ve been taking….. so to hear him say that was a little disappointing to me.  I was hoping he would think that it was going to take more time and that he would be surprised if it was gone.  In other words…..  I didn’t expect him to think that the chemo would work that fast.  It seems that if you have to have 12 treatments, that it would take longer.  Anyway…..  I’m fully expecting my imaging next Monday to show it’s gone.  And I still think it’s the supplements… in addition to chemo.  But I KNOW they are helping me do so well.

Anyway…. I asked him….. if it’s completely gone this early in the treatments….. WHY do I need 12 treatments?  I know, I know….. it’s protocol.  But WHY?  I can see having a few more treatments passed it being gone….. but 7 more????  Seems a little excessive to me.  I realize that part of not wanting that many is because I just want to be done…… but I also don’t understand the need to continue poisoning the body if it doesn’t need to be.  I’m going to do some studying about all that.

So…. my treatment went fine.  It’s kind of fun to get to know other patients that are there.  Some are more open and talkative than others, but it’s interesting to hear their stories.  There was an older gentleman in the chair next to me this time.  His wife and daughter were there with him.  We had a nice conversation with them about many things.  It always makes the time breeze by when you are talking with others.

I also met my friend Diane there.  She was there with her daughter in law who is being treated for colon cancer.  Diane is helping me with my 100 Caps for Chemo project.  She brought me several cute hats she had made.  It’s so fun to see this all coming together!  Between the two of us, we left 14 caps at the cancer center that day.  I found out they only treat adults there, so I have a few children’s sizes that I need to take up to Primary Children’s Hospital for the kids.

I’ve been working furiously on caps since then and have several more to take with me next week.  I also have a bag of 21 caps that another friend dropped off to me yesterday.  I’m so excited about these because they were all made by second grade students!  Isn’t that cool?  I thought that was such a wonderful thing for those kids to be learning and donating!  By the time I turn those in with what I have…. I think we will be close to having 50 caps in!  I’m having a great time making them!  I’m learning so much more about crocheting than I ever thought I would.  And who knew I’d enjoy it so much???  Hats, hats, hats!

So back to my treatment….. things went OK.  Pretty normal for a treatment day.  I went home feeling a little yucky, which isn’t unusual for a treatment day.  However…. about two hours after we got home I broke out in the chills.  It took almost two hours for me to warm up.  Then I started with a fever.  One of the things they worry about during chemo treatments is you getting a fever.  You’re more susceptible to things, so that’s something they have you watch for.  It usually takes a few days for those types of symptoms to arise, so for it to start the day of treatment is not normal.  Once my fever reached 102 I put a call into the doctor.  The on call doctor called me back.  When I told her what had happened, she asked if I had a port.  I told her I did and she suspected that somehow some bacteria may have gotten into the port and that’s what the problem was.  Interestingly enough, it was a newer nurse that helped me that day.  The nurse manager was there to help and make sure that she did everything right.  There was a little problem with my port that day.  They were having trouble drawing the blood back out and after wiggling it around a few times, etc, they got it to work.  I don’t know if that was the problem or not….. but I was sick that night!  (The next day when I came back for my shot, I mentioned it to the nurse and she said that she was sure it wasn’t a problem with the port.  Every thing had been very sanitary. Who knows…..)

The doctor had me start on the antibiotic that I keep on hand for such cases.  I also took some tylenol to try and help break the fever.  After a fitful night and waking up pretty wet from sweating, I felt much better.  In fact, I was surprised how much better I felt the next morning.  And I was so grateful…. for many reasons, but mostly because I wanted to attend the Hale Center Theater Birthday party that night!

My son had invited me to be his ‘date’ since his girlfriend/friend….. (whatever they are right now….) was in New York.  I was excited to go since I didn’t get an invitation myself.  They only invite the actors that have been in a show there for the last year and since I hadn’t done one for a couple of years I didn’t get a personal invite.  So I was happy to go with him.  It’s a ‘black tie’ affair and it’s fun to dress up!  At least I think so!  I’m only mad because we didn’t have anyone take a picture of us!  I didn’t even think about it!  And they even had a photo booth there!  I just didn’t know it!  I think I looked pretty good considering I’d just had a treatment!  At least that’s what people kept telling me!  It was a very fun evening and it was great to see so many theater friends.  They were all so kind and concerned about me.

The next day we dropped off my son, Nate at the airport.  He was headed to NYC for 10 days.  Lucky him!!  While we were up north, we drove to Bountiful and got an adjustment at the Chiropractor and then stopped by to visit my Mom for a while.  On the way back home, we stopped at NPS.  It’s an overstock warehouse place that sells outdated and surplus things.  I was hoping they’d have some wigs there.  That’s where my friend buys all hers for her theater things.  However…. they didn’t have any in.  I was just curious if they did and what styles they are.  While I love and am very grateful for the ones that have been loaned to me… I was hoping to find another style or even another color!

My days since then have been pretty boring, or normal.  I made a trip to JoAnn’s to buy more hat patterns and found a couple of remnants of fleece to use for them for a great price.  I crocheted several hats over the weekend…. many of which were time consuming but they are cute!  I probably wont repeat those time consuming ones for this project, but I learned a lot making them!

We went to church on Sunday and we actually stayed for the entire 3 hour block.  That’s the first time in a long time I’ve done that.  It was nice to finally get to Relief Society!  Later that day, Jon came over for dinner.  With Nate in NYC and Mandy doing Frightmares, Jon was the only one available!  Even Ali was in California…..  but it let me make him a nice dinner.  We had a good visit, he’s doing much better and is ready to head back to work!

Wednesday, I decided to try and put a full day in at the temple as a worker.  It was my first day back since I’d been on hold.  It was so good to get back!  I missed those ladies!  They were all so kind to me!  Everyone is so concerned!  I did OK… but I didn’t sleep very well the night before, so I don’t think I had quite the energy I needed.  One of the assistant coordinators came in to relieve me part way through both of my initiatory sessions, but it was good to get back and get that verbiage back in my head!  Such beautiful blessings!  I was number 2 on the session that day and by the time it was over, I was ready to come home!

Yesterday, I helped with a ward Relief Society project.  We were making sanitary kits for girls and women in Africa.  Basically, those women don’t have the modern conveniences we do here when it comes to feminine products and those monthly needs!  We put together a package of things they could use and reuse.  In other words… modern ‘rags’ that could be washed out and reused.  I can’t even imagine what it must be like!  We are SO spoiled here!  It makes you realize how blessed you are.

As you can see…. other than the bout I had with chills and fever the day of treatment, I have been doing well.  I’m confident that things will continue to be good.  Today I’m off to discovering what kind of recipe I can use for the Ward Halloween Chili Cook off party tonight!  Then I’m sure I’ll be making more hats this weekend!!

Quick addition to this post……. (updated 10/31/12)  If you’d like to see a few of the Hats we donated…. check out my Facebook post with pictures here.

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2 Replies to “09 – Hats, Hats and More Hats!”

  1. My friend, I love to read your blog, you are inspiring every time you write. I know people who go through chemo and during the whole time, they stay at home, they need meals, they can’t seem to do anything but wait to either get well or die. You on the other hand are just going along living your life and taking a littlle time once in a while to fit in the treatment. You are controlling the treatment instead of the treatment controlling you. I love you for this and so many other things.

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