Oh yeah day two of chemo, Jen is signed up to be my DD. I wake up exhausted...late night blogging, steroids, chemo, the emotion everything involved with day one left me feeling like my body was a war zone and it was not pretty. So I make my smoothie, get my supplements and we hit the road. After the completely crippling effects of day one I have no idea, how I got out of bed, and decided to return to Sedona for day 2. I just do, I can not explain it but I just go.
We show up a few minutes late......that's okay because I am not really in a hurry today. We explain to the Dr. my horrible day and night so she switches up the meds a bit. Then I proceed to doze off and on for the rest of the day. I read a few magazines. Jen heads out to get lunch. I nap a little. We eat lunch. We chat some more, I nap some more and before you know it day 2 is pretty much over.
The change up in drugs seems to work I am groggy as hell but I am not puking...three cheers for the pharmaceutical company.....rah rah rah. We decide coffee is in order for the ride home. So Jen and I head into Sedona, we come across a cute little coffee shop near the post office. We grab our lattes to go and stroll around. After chemo the simple, normal things feel priceless. So we wander into a hip little boutique and peruse the sale rack. They happen to be doing card tarot card readings in the back room so I sign up for one. When you are in the vortex it seems like the right thing to do. Sadly I have chemo brain and don't remember all the details. I believe I pulled 4 man of world cards (There apparently are only 4) one related to feelings and how I must allow myself to feel everything, another had to do with masks...I would be changing them often...I needed to always remember which one was the real me....one had to do with organization and accomplishing any task...another for some kind of transition....then the universe card...another big change...and for the life of me I don't remember the last card. I wish I had taken a picture of them.....It was kind of fun, it surely beats puking my brains out and I needed a little encouragement from the other side :)
So Jen and I head home, I think we go over the mountain. I am not even sure the drugs kind of just created a blank spot in my brain. We get home around 4:00, Steve drops the boys off sometime later. I really don't have much recollection of that night at all. I think Amy came down to help with the boys and we all pretty much turned in. I can't believe how vague this day is in my memory. Maybe it is like childbirth....if you don't remember the details it will hurt less when you revisit that space.
The 3 days following chemo I return to work. The Wednesday following I wake up slow and plod through my day....it is like my brain has been turned into soup and every simple thing requires all my concentration. I had no appetite and a splitting headache. Thursday was pretty much the same only in addition to the other side effects I also had puffy eyes, always a nice touch when you work with the public...no I have not been crying all day even though I look like I have been. Friday, I almost called in....but my weekend was around the corner....I made it through with a little nap on the booth. I could not shake the extreme fatigue, it was never ending. The boys were scheduled to be with there Dad for the weekend. So I rented a ton of movies to prepare myself for some extreme couch surfing. The headache is what really wears me down....fall asleep with one and wake up with one just sucks. That headache was accompanied by low level nausea...the kind that says you might need to puke. This combination prevents me from drinking my smoothie or taking my supplements (I manage about half of them). I just listen to my body and ride it out. I manage to squeeze in some gentle yoga on Saturday in hopes of centering my body and mind. It feels good but the headache persists. I spend the remainder of the day on the couch.
On Saturday (2/25) I was an emotional mess. The weepies returned I did not want to be sick, and home on the couch. Thankfully Kate popped over at the right time, I cried some more. Apparently it is more effective when you cry with someone, or at least that particular cry doesn't get stored inside but is set free. Somehow shared tears lighten the load a bit. So we run out for some more movies and a little Chipolte and it is back to the couch for ...ready....set....heal..........
Sadly it doesn't quite happen that way but a little company goes a long way. Amy pops in later to watch movies with me and I doze in and out of my films.
So I forgot to mention a totally amazing part of the longest week ever. My support system has been working overtime. Layla comes and refills my water bottles for me. Melanie and Leslie come to my house on Friday while I am at work and do all my laundry and clean my apartment. I come home Friday to a clean apartment, laundry done, healthy food in the refrigerator, and flowers on my table I am so blessed. The extra help allows me to come home and rest in complete peace, no mommy guilt of chores not being done.
The next amazing part of the longest week ever is a healing meditation that I organized for Sunday. I am working with a woman that practices Chinese medicine. I had a session with her early in the day, it is a combination of chi gong and acupuncture and some other things that I just don't have the language quite yet to explain. Then we had a group energy ceremony with some of my close friends, in a guided practice we gathered "chi" and showered it on me. All I can say at this point is that love and intention are very powerful things and by Sunday afternoon, I felt like I was on the mend. I went home after my session and really rested.
Monday and Tuesday I felt stronger and stronger. By Wednesday of last week I was ready to get out on my bike for the 1st time in 3 weeks. Oddly I felt just like me it was like a switch had been flipped and I was back to normal. I am tired in the evenings....I am a single mom....that is the norm.......We had our last weekend of YMCA Basketball for the boys. That of course means party at Peter Piper, which of course can wear down the heartiest of parents. Corbin has another cold/cough so we were at the doctor yet again. The good news is his cast has only a few more weeks. Life has a magical way of pressing on.
I managed to squeeze in a ride over the weekend as well. I am honored to have such an amazing riding community. For those that don't know my friend Tina, with the help of others has designed a ladies riding jersey, with all profits from the sales going to help my family during this time. If you come to P-town for the Whisky Off Road you will see a bunch of amazing women sporting these jerseys, or maybe you will just see them out on the trail. I am humbled daily by the immense out pouring of love that is showered on me and my family.
I have chemo again on March 12th and 13th.......not quite the ski trip I had planned for spring break, but it will do.
I am filled with so much gratitude for all the people that are sharing this journey with me.
Drink water and breathe.....