Gym -- Week 1 Recap

Monday -- If you haven't already, read about Day 1 here.

Tuesday -- Man, was I sore when I woke up this morning!  It was good, though!  I went down to the gym after breakfast.  My goal was five minutes on the recumbent bike.  I downloaded a new book on my Overdrive app hoping to distract myself from the timer on the bike and it worked.  I ended up going for 30 minutes!  My legs were a little wonky for the rest of the day; thank goodness for the walker, lol.  After taking an afternoon nap (inactivity) my legs were even more sore than earlier.  I needed to use the lift chair (recliner) for the day as I had trouble standing from a sitting position.  I know that the soreness will wane over time.  Not stopping.

Wednesday -- Not so sore upon waking this morning.  Yay!  Managed to up my game on the recumbent bike from the 30 minutes yesterday to 45 minutes today.  I'm sure it looked weird, but I took my knitting with me.  I have a book downloaded on my phone, there are tv screens on th…

Gym -- Day 1

I joined a gym today.  I've been wanting to for awhile.  You see, I've tried to do this on my own so, so many times.  Call it laziness or whatever, I just can't seem to push myself to get on the bike or walk every day.  With my health issues, it's become a necessity, not a luxury; a need versus a want.  One of the medicines I'm on (Herceptin) is known to cause heart issues.  I have an echocardiogram every three months to monitor my heart.  Once my heart function deteriorates, it's time to switch medicines.  We want to delay that as long as possible.  In the metastatic cancer world, there are limits.  We are on a medication until it stops working, then we try something else until it stops working, and so on until there are no other options left.  So you can see why we want to do everything in our power to stay on the same medication for as long as we can.  In this case, that means me doing what I can to keep my heart healthy.

Another reason is this -- this is m…

06/06/2019 Oncology Update

I had my regular, every six week oncology appointment today.  I left the house at 7:45am and checked in for my appointment around 9:40am for my 10:00am appointment.  Traffic was good up until I got on 295, then it was heavy the whole rest of the way.  It was a good drive, though.  Traffic moved steadily, just very slowly.  It was a pretty stress free drive.

Hardly anyone was in the waiting room when I arrived, just one other lady with her husband and grown son.  As I pulled my knitting out, she came over to chat.  She's been knitting for just over a year and loves it as much as I do.   She admired the shawl I had with me, and the share of blue I'm using for a baby blanket I'm currently working on.  She told me about the sweaters that she's making for her granddaughters; they have to be identical so the girls won't fight over them.  😊

During the appointment with my oncologist, I inquired about increasing the dosage of my anti-depressant.  I'm on a pretty low do…

On Being Tired

I'm tired.

I'm tired of pretending to be brave when really, I'm not.

I'm tired of not being able to go places and do things because I'm exhausted or feeling sick.

I'm tired of pretending to be happy and joyful when really I'm sad.

I'm tired of trying to figure out if the person asking "How are you doing today?" really wants to know, or is expecting the "Doing well, how about you?" answer, and usually getting it wrong.

I'm tired of explaining to people that even though I "look" better, I'm actually never going to get better.

I'm tired of being worried about money, and being able to pay bills.

I'm tired of how sickness has changed our family dynamic.

I'm tired of making the drive to treatment every three weeks, every other time alone, and of feeling bad when someone does come with me, that they're so bored.

I'm tired of being so tired when I get home from work that I do nothing but go to bed.


Loss of Independence

Please remember, and keep in mind -- 
I don't post these things to gain your sympathy or your pity;
I post them so that you can see what the reality is for a person
living with a terminal or chronic illness.

In the past, I've talked about things that cancer has taken away.   Today I'll talk about the loss of independence.

From the time I went to college at 18, until I got married at 31, I was pretty much on my own.  I lived with my parents for a while, then rented a room in a house that a friend owned.  After awhile, I bought my own house; lived alone for a few years, did everything on my own.  Then I met the man who would become my husband.  Once we got married, we learned, like every married couple, how to balance out the chores and how to live comfortably together.  Some things we still did on our own, but most things we did together.  Once our first child was born, I …

Notes From the Infusion Chair -- April 2019; Slight Change in Treatment

Oncology Appointment

My latest CT scan and echo, that I had this past Friday, are good.  I usually skim the report, and hone in on the bottom line.  For the CT scan, it says, "Impression:  Stable exam, no evidence of metastatic disease."  For the echo, it says, "In comparison with prior study from 1/25/2019 there is no significant change."  We also look at the Ejection Fraction, which is noted on the report as 60-65%.  These are good numbers.  Great news!

In addition to going over my latest scan and echo results during the appointment with my oncologist, I talked to her about the neuropathy in my hands and feet getting more pronounced and a little painful.  I told her that the foot massage I get during my monthly pedicures helps immensely, as does holding a hot cup of coffee in my hands.  She explained to me that these sensations (pressure, heat) supersede the pain sensations in the nerves.  So, these kinds of relief, as well as pain meds,  would just mask the nerv…


We all know that music can have an impact on our lives -- on our emotions, on how we feel.  A song can change your mood in a heartbeat.  I use music to help me to fall asleep at night, to calm my nerves, to energize me, to give me strength.  Today I'd like to tell you about three songs that have had an impact on me.

A few years ago, I went on a road trip with my son.  As we were driving, a medley of songs came on the radio.  He told me then that these songs reminded him about what I had been going through, was then going through, and would be going through in the future.  I've grouped them into a YouTube playlist here if you'd like to listen as you read.  All songs are by Rascal Flatts.

The first song, Skin (Sarabeth) tells the story about how it feels to learn of a cancer diagnosis, of dealing with the side effects of the chemo, and how family and friends are so incredibly supportive.

The second song, Feels Like Today, reminds me of the end of harsh treatment, and the pro…