Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Post-chemo update (can't think of an interesting title)

Dear Family and Friends,
  Gabrielle here.  I am very pleased to report that after three days of neupogen shots in my stomach last week to boost my immune system, I was able to get my triple chemo day drugs on Friday!  Oh, it was a L-O-N-G day.  It took six hours from start to finish.  First the blood work and waiting for the lab results.  Then the pre-meds--anti-nausea, steroids, things to help me not react badly to the chemo, etc.  Then the first chemo drug.  Then the second chemo drug.  Then the third drug that helps prevent blood vessel growth to feed tumors.  I was blessed to have both Renee and Daniel with me and as you might have guessed by now, we played Scrabble (I won at the very last second by adding an "S" to Renee's word "quads" and it crossed a triple word score.  Woo hoo!).  We also watched the old movie "The American President," which Daniel had never seen.  I came home so happy to have received cancer-killing medicine--but I was truly wiped out.
  Since then I've had a lot of nausea and fatigue.  And still some depression.  It's tough adjusting to all this again, and my days can get long and a bit lonely.  But we continue to do three things:  Keep our eyes on Jesus, order our days well, knowing how precious they are, and look for joy in each day. 
  Today's joy came in the form of a lovely walk/prayer time in the sunshine, and "deep and real" conversations with some dear friends and family members.  It also came in the form of dinner being brought to us by Dean--that we are just now going to enjoy! 
  In closing, remember when I told you during last year's chemo that the chemo kills off hair cells?  Well, the hair on top of my head is still clinging to life, while the hair in my nose is gone.  The hair in one's nose plays a crucial role of keeping the snot where it's supposed to be--in your nose--most of the time.  Take home message--never, never bend your chemo nose over the tray of salsa, avocado, and chips you've just set out for your family for Cinco de Mayo!  Gross!!!
  Thank you for all your kindnesses--meals, cards, flowers, treats, and most important of all, your prayers.  You are precious to us.


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