“There will come a time when you believe everything is finished.That will be the beginning.”
― Louis L'Amour
― Louis L'Amour
We were crazy late getting out the door today and I don't know I if ever got my head completely on straight. It was just a glimpse of how the day was going to go. So many things coming at me all at once my head was swimming before I even sat down. So I sat with my pager waiting for my turn at the lab and trying to collect myself. When they finally paged me, they took me back to a station with 6 tubes for blood and one pregnancy test waiting. The study wants its final samples from me as a parting gift. But it meant I got to see Kathy, my research nurse again and hug her, so it was a good trade off. It may be awhile, but I am sure our paths will cross again. She also graciously offered to take calls with questions from me, so in a way I don't really feel I've lost her completely.
Dr. Panwalkar was his usual- in a good mood but ready to get down to business. He carefully showed me my scans. In my lungs, instead of just 1 small spot, I now have about 4 spots, but they are still quite small which is good. My lymph nodes under my arm have also grown a bit. And the spot in my brain, grew just a smidge. But since I am off the study, and the lymph nodes under my arm are probably impinging on a nerve causing pain in my arm, we are going to zap those pesky buggers away! In fact we are going to zap my brain, my back and my lymph nodes with some targeted radiation. Is it crazy that I feel a little relieved/excited that we may just get rid of them altogether?
So I am losing my research team, and gaining a radiation team. In fact, one of the nurses that works in radiation is another hockey mom/friend, and the radiation scheduler, is a dear high school friend! Could I be in better hands? Seriously? While all three doctors come highly recommended, my sweet friends chose one to work with me, called him about me already, and have me all lined up to see him first thing Monday morning.
But before we even get radiation underway, I started a new chemo today named Eribulin. I will have chemo once a week for two weeks, then have a week off. Its a newer drug thats been on the market for a couple of years, but has been known to shrink if not melt lung mets away. I will also do my "Vitamin H" or Herceptin, once every three weeks.
Of course it comes with a bit of a drawback. Initially Dr. Panwalkar mentioned trying Xeloda, which is a pill you take every day, and it has few side effects. But its several thousand dollars a month, and my insurance won't cover it since its a pill. The insurance, will however, cover infused drugs.
So I decided, I will go with the insurance covered Eribulin, and be willing to lose my hair instead. I am neither happy, nor sad about the whole thing. It just is. It happens differently for everyone, so I have no idea how much or how little hair will come out, or when.
Dr. Panwalkar did ask me why I didn't call him back. I told him I just trusted him and have felt such calm and peace knowing I could leave it in his hands, and in HIS hands. All week last week, my prayers were pretty simplistic- I just needed God to show up. And I can't help but feel, in the beauty of how all the details came together, he was behind all of it.
The rest of the day has been a blur. I had people in and out of my tiny chemo hole, oops, I mean room, all day long. The remodeling being done is creating makeshift areas for infusion and crowded waiting areas, and chaotic hallways, but we are all just doing the best we can. In many ways, whether its cancer, or an upheaval in a work situation, or a divorce, or some other burden being carried, we all long for the same thing... for the hope of something better on the horizon.
I continue to be inundated with texts and emails and I haven't been able to respond to them at all! Please know they comfort me, support me, and continue to lift me up and keep me going. Love to you all...