Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Ice Cream and a Snoogle

Well...it's been a couple of days since I took my fanny pack off and I've taken stock of what the new cocktail means to me.

My neuropathy is definitely gone...for now. That means that I have a ton of options for nutrition that I didn't have for at least a week each time I had previous infusions. How do I get a bunch of calories in a small volume?  Ice Cream!  I can once again put a nice cold spoonful of wonderfully sweet, creamy goodness in my mouth without feeling like it's full of crawling bugs. Yes!  My neuropathy being gone also means that I can touch things that are cold and actually apply pressure with my fingers. This will make getting into work so much easier. I had a heck of a time with our card readers and pin pads before Christmas. 

My abdominal pain isn't gone, but it has evolved. I've had to sleep on a bed wedge that raises my head about 7.5" just to be comfortable in bed for the past two months. The only problem is that I don't sleep on my back well and the wedge keeps you on your back whether you like it or not. So sleep has been elusive. It had gotten so bad that I tried different solutions to sleep and still not wake up in searing pain. One of those was just sleeping in bed like I always have...15 minutes was all I lasted before I was in unbearable pain. The pain comes from my abdomen where all the tumors and atrophied muscles are. They don't like to be stretched and without some sort of support they make it very clear how unhappy they are. My old team at Schreiber Foods surprised me with a get well card and Amazon gift card for Christmas.  With that card I bought a Snoogle. We had gotten one for Tami when she was pregnant and she loved it. It really does provide a bunch of different support positions and is pretty darn comfy.  So there...I'm buying canes and pregnancy nursing/sleeping pillows. The Snoogle was great but I still couldn't use it because of the abdominal pain caused by the chemo drugs. I'm happy to report that I tried it last night and got the best night sleep that I've had in months. Yay sleep!  Another positive change for the new drug. 

I-Run-To-The-Can is a cruel joke. I was expecting some serious movement in my gut with the switch to Irinotecan. As odd as it sounds, for someone whose had a hard time...um...going for weeks on end, I was actually looking forward to this side effect. The first night it hit as expected, so I went off my Miralax (no need to help it out right) and then it disappeared like a shadow in the night. It's been 3 days since my last...confessional...and Father, I don't feel well at all. I'm back on the Miralax and hope to see something today. I'm pretty sure not too many people pray to God with a little tear in their eye and ask for a good BM.

I've heard a lot of people celebrating the demise of 2013 and hoping that 2014 will be better.  No doubt, it hasn't been the best year.  I have a bunch of friends and family who have had some pretty crappy things happen to them this past year.  Maybe I'm the exception here but, until my diagnosis in November, my year went really well.  I got my dream job, a huge raise, a bunch of certifications and got to be closer to my family.  Even after my diagnosis, which admittedly put a damper on the end of the year, I found out that I had made a difference in so many peoples' lives that there was an overwhelming outpouring of prayer and positive thoughts.  I found new friendships, fostered existing relationships and just saw the beauty of humanity in general.  All in all, I think the year turned out pretty good.

When you look back at the year at this time for reflection, look for some of the positive aspects of it instead of the negative.  It will help you to determine what to focus on in the new year.

Thank you to everyone who made this year memorable.


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