Tuesday, 19 July 2011

The Unprolific Blogger

So it's coming up on two months since I was diagnosed and wrote my first blog post.  I wrote the first entry in a flurry of emotion and bursting with the need to record all that I had experienced in those hellish first days. Since then, I've thought about writing another post a lot but just haven't and since "you cannot plow a field by turning it over in your mind," here I go again.
Since arriving back in Canada on May 26th I have:

-had a mammogram, breast ultrasound, another core biopsy, abdomen ultrasound, chest x-ray, MRI, bone scan and an angiogram. 
-found out that the cancer has not spread anywhere else as far as the scans can see. No lymph node was large enough for a biopsy so we don't know about those but the MRI didn't show anything.
-been annoyingly aggressive and obnoxious in securing appointment dates and times in order to get into the BC Cancer Agency system PRONTO. 
-met a lovely general surgeon who surprisingly recommended chemotherapy before surgery.  His reasons were a) my age and the fact that pre-menopausal usually have much more aggressive cancers and b) the tumor is big and it gives time to shrink it right away before the surgeon and plastic surgeon can coordinate my surgery.
-finally gotten into an oncologist at BC Cancer.  I say "finally" but, really, in retrospect, it all moved very fast even though at the time it seemed I was waiting forever. My oncologist is super rad and kick ass awesome. I heart him.
-started SIX MONTHS of chemotherapy.  Already done two doses and have lost all my hair. The first three months will be once every three weeks of Cyclophosphamide injection and Doxorubicin and the second three months will be once a week of Paclitaxel.

I'm somewhat over the initial shock and horror of it all and am now in a much better place. Thankfully, I found a book in the very early days that really helped me a lot, Crazy Sexy Cancer Tips by Kris Carr. She is so positive and amazing and smart and really just very funny and real about the whole thing. Having her attitude as a model has been a life-saver.

I've got two super-wicked-awesome wigs, one red, one blond, that I will be enjoying and also enjoying the medicinal marijuana, thank you Canada.

Right now I'm on PEI, where I grew up, and enjoying some beach bumming, lobster eating and family visiting and loving. Life looks much better than it did last time I wrote and I'm in a great place.

Oh! Two of my very very good friends shaved their heads with me the night I finally had to let go of the hope that my hair would defy expectations and not fall out. Who could hope for better friends than that?


  1. I think you both look beautiful. She was so awesome to do that with you.
    I think you are so brave. I don't know if I tell you enough.
    I love you.

  2. You look beautiful. It is good to hear you are doing as well as can be expected. When I first heard your story a few months ago, I could not believe it. What a horrible first experience with something so damn frightening, even in the best of circumstances.
    Know that the chemo shrunk my tumors 80-90% before surgery. Still a large area, but even after the lumpectomy you would not know it to see me clothed. I'm happy so far although they say that radiation my shrink my breast a bit more. If need be, I'll have a reduction on the "healthy" breast to even them out.
    I am now 12 sessions into a 33 round of radiation; every day M-F for nearly 7 weeks. It is a walk in the park compared to chemo, for sure, but still a scary situation.
    Love your entry about the book. I recently did some research on Femara, the drug I am to take for 5 years once rads are done. Talk about scaring the S_ _ _ out of you. I guess this is what we will be up against for years to come. Thankfully there will be "years to come".
    Hang in there... stay strong... try to stay positive!