Friday, March 7, 2014

A big scare, new motivation and mobility devices

Today is my eighth treatment and I can tell you, I didn't want to come this morning. The particular drug that I start with makes me feel horrible all day. By bedtime I'm more than ready for the day to be over and already dreading the next two days. Thankfully the weekend is a bit better now that I have a cocktail of chemicals to stabilize things. I've already pulled a couple of movies for the weekend. We'll see if I get to them. Top Gun, Terminal and Office Space. Tami also has the final part of the Twilight series coming....

So today was another day that reinforced the concept of expecting the unexpected.  2 weeks ago I got switched to a different drug in my chemo regimen.  2 weeks ago I had no reaction to the drug.  But today I had a very real and scary allergic reaction during my treatment.  This is always a concern with a new drug and today it was realized.  30 minutes into a 90 minute infusion I started to feel sick and my entire head turned lobster red and started radiating down my neck.  This all happened in a span of 3 to 5 minutes.  At that point Tami called a nurse and a team of amazing women sprang into action.  If you read my FB post, you'll know that the offending drug was cut off and I was immediately pumped full of steroids and Benadryl.  After an hour of monitoring and stabilizing, it was decided to restart the drug infusion at the same dose but half the rate.  That seemed to do the trick and after another 90 minutes, started my last drug.  It's very important to note that I was just minutes away from a rapid response team and a crash cart, but thanks to Tami recognizing the need to get the nurse and the team's fast and focused response, that didn't happen.  I owe a lot to these wonderful women.  After 8 full hours at the hospital we finally got my fanny pack and went home.  It was a long day to say the least.  But I'm better now and ready to move on with my weekend.

But enough drama...I had several appointments with some very smart people this week that has given me a renewed sense of motivation.

On Tuesday I had an appointment with an exercise physiologist who gave me a band workout that won't eat up too many calories and will hopefully remind my body that I actually need those muscles and it's not very appropriate to eat them.  He also turned me on to a new start-up called Green Growlers.  Tami and I had been looking for a way to start Green Smoothies but were a bit intimidated.  This company delivers growlers full of organic green smoothies to your door once a week.  This is going to be a great way to get introduced to the concept and I'm really excited about it.

On Thursday I had an appointment with a registered dietician who gave me clear and concise direction on a meal strategy.  I'm going to increase my milk consumption, start putting protein powder in things that I never thought possible and eating more veg.  I'm excited.  I am also motivated like mad.  I ordered a new set of bands, a different kind of sugar (dextrose vs sucrose or fructose) that is going to be easier on my liver and we're going to start with green smoothies this week.

Another motivating factor is today's CEA number.  106.1  That's a wonderful number.  As this chart illustrates, the trend that began with my last lab result continues to head in the right direction.  A drop of around 34 points!  I'm really interested to see what my next CT result says and if it correlates with the CEA number.
In the line of thinking that you have to take the good with the bad...I'm still losing weight.  Albeit only 2 pounds in the last 2 weeks, so that's good.  But, with the weight loss and mix of drugs, I'm losing some mobility.  I showed off my cane a couple of months ago and today I ordered something that will enable me to walk a bit further and rest when I need to.  Even if it does make me look like an octogenarian.   Now, this isn't an everyday device, but if I want to walk more than 5 to 10 minutes at a time I'll need it.  It's the Rollator by Hugo...or as I will call it from now on...the McRocknRoll.
Yup...I've now got a walker.  But as one reviewer on Amazon put it...It's a man-sized Rollator.  That's right.  8" wheels instead of a puny 6".  Reinforced aluminum frame with a seat bag AND a saddle bag.  When I'm not tearin' up the pavement (or any other moderately graded terrain), I can sit back and relax on the padded seat and backrest.  Manly comfort.  ;)  And to top it off, I got a sweet water bottle holder that bolts on to the frame for maximum hydration.  Oh Yeah. 

So...when life gives you lemons (or eats away at your muscle structure) find a way to adapt and overcome...even if it means getting a totally manly and rockin' Rollator.

Keep rolling my friends.



  1. Love it!! I bet everyone will wanna borrow the rollator :-D

  2. The McRocknRoll definitely needs flames.custom paint job by the kid, at least.