Monday, February 13, 2012

Sedona success!!!

Life is always a whirlwind in my world. Cancer just throws more stuff into the mix, some really unpleasant and some really great. For all of us life continues to go on, until it doesn't. So I am a motivated metastatic cancer patient.

The good news is that I have decided on a doctor, Dr. Lindquist was the fit I was looking for she is caring, hopeful, and super smart. She understands the specific nature of MY disease. I met with her on Tuesday 2/7 for approximately half an hour. We talked of clinical trials, she wanted to contact her colleagues to present my case to see what they would suggest prior to a final recommendation. This makes sense to me. Gather as much information as possible, then make a choice. While waiting to here from all the who's who in the breast cancer world it is time to prepare for treatment. Dr. Lindquist orders a port, some heart test, and a TON of blood work.

So Gina, my oh so amazing driver for the day gets to watch me fill like 8 tubes of blood. I start of like a champ thinking this is going be just a few tubes. I talk and talk, and then I watch her keep reaching for tubes and I see how many she has left to go. Then my ears start to ring, my vision gets blurry I am cold and clammy. Brenda the plebotomist calls over a nurse, just in case I faint. The new onc office is kind of crowded, there are 2 women waiting to have their blood drawn watching my drama unfold. It feels like there are people everywhere nothing like making a GREAT first impression. I fill all the tubes, staying conscious the entire time, it takes FOREVER. When I finally return to a normal state, I make my way to Richard the scheduler and I am booked to have a port placed at the YRMC Cath lab in Prescott Friday 2/10. Gina and I leave the appointment much closer to a plan and I feel good about the progress.

Thankfully Jerome is strategically located between here and Sedona. We stop at this little restaurant called Quince for dinner. I had the best Ahi tacos, loaded with pomegranate, mango and jalapenos. Spending the day with Gina was just what the Dr. ordered, it takes a special person to walk by your side on a day like this and G well I just love you. Thanks for being there for me.

For two days I return to work, like a normal person.

Friday is procedure day. I wake up take the boys to school, come home, shower, do some laundry and again drink my saliva until noon. Jen is my chariot driver for phase one, she is also my go to for the boys. The hospital was kind enough to warn me ahead of time that they are often behind schedule. This confuses me, why not just schedule me later? This new cath/lab port placement fills me with a little anxiety. What is light sedation, is it like light beer? I go back for pre-op and wouldn't you know I have a super attractive male nurse. Great that will make me relax. Michael does all the pre-op questions, he thinks I am a nurse because I have got this dance down. Then I let him in on the fact that I don't like needles. A gal comes in and draws my blood for some routine tests. He wisely notices my distress and punts my IV placement to Anita the Needle Ninja. Anita strolls in and she is no nonsense. She has arrived on the scene to place an IV and she does it with absolute calm and authority in her voice. The authoritative tone is what froze me to the bed. Her physique reminded me of Olive Oyl from Popeye and she had this beret on and here lips were stained deep maroon. Anita was not a force to be reckoned with so I laid there prone no whimpering or whining. First a little local, then tube placement in vein, followed by tons of tape to keep tube in place....then the icy saline drip, IV accomplished. Why can't I get used to that? We are on our way. Now for the next part, what the hell are the drugs going to do to me? They decide it is in my best interest if I take a couple of Valiums prior to the procedure. Okay if you insist. Jen gets to visit with me after the IV until they wheel me back.

The joy about having a procedure in your home town is that you run into tons of people you know. Jamie wheels me back and we are all chatting about all kinds of stuff. I remember getting names of the other nurses Regan, Kimberly, Cheryl and of course Dr. McNaughty (McNotten), I named him naughty just so I could remember. So I am totally chatting it up with the nurses, and then there is this gap. Regan tells me I nodded off for about 5 minutes, I wake up to feel Dr. suturing my skin. I could feel the tugging, and I didn't care. I just laid there not to concerned . I think I may have gotten off the operating table and got back into the hospital bed on my own. Then they wheeled me back to post-op. Typing about it today it feels a little faint in my memory, but at the time I felt amazing clear headed. Quite possibly one of the craziest things I have ever experienced medically. My friend Anessa comes to pick me up, we stop and get me a burrito as I was starving. Again I feel totally FINE, and I can't get over it. I am able to walk, I am not really sore. This was way better then my 1st port placement, that was so awful I felt like I was hit by a baseball bat. My theory is that surgeons may be more gentle when you are not under general anesthesia.

I am so much closer to treatment.

There is soooo much more, alas it is way late.

Drink water and breathe

1 comment:

  1. As I sit here still in amazement that you are having to write about this once again, all I can think about is how kick ass you are. I do not know what I would do in your shoes. Thinking and praying of you every day.

    Happy V-Day!!!