Thursday, October 26, 2006

Funny comebacks ;)

Why are you scratching yourself so much?
I'm the only one who knows where it itches.

I didn't ask to be born!
You didn't wanna stay where you were, did you?

I have never been so insulted in my life!
You haven't been out much, have you?

Monday, October 23, 2006

Weekend was rough. The cumulative effect of the radiation has finally made itself known by pretty much burning my tender bits in the irradiated area until I'm raw. Using suggested creams and ointments but they're not managing it. Got a script today though for some Vicodin. Doesn't resolve the root cause of the problem but fixes my brain's pain receptors so I don't care? hehe Actually, even that isn't completely alleviating my discomfort, but it's much more tolerable.

Fortunately, I'm on my next-to-last week! So I'll do what I gotta do to get to the end of this phase. Was prescribed 30 radiation treatments --- only nine left! Only two more batches of chemo and the last one will be shortened to conclude at the same time as the radiation.

New information, at least to me: Vicodin, Lortab and some other 'good drugs' are actually the same thing... hydrocodone with acetaminophen. Hydrocodone is a synthetic opiate (opioid) derived from two naturally occurring opiates, codeine and thebaine (aka paramorphine). Hydrocodone is a Schedule II narcotic and potentially addictive, physically and/or psychologically.

Firstly, I didn't realize that codeine counted as an opiate.

Secondly, I'm being careful with my use of this stuff so 1) I don't have to fight an addiction later, and 2) it will still have full impact after surgery when I will need more serious pain killing.

Thirdly, the only difference between Vicodin and Lortab is 5mg vs 7.5mg hydrocodone. There's another version with 10mg. Not sure why they did that. I mean, I can get the same quantities with 1, 1.5 or 2 of the 5mg.

And finally, I imagine I'm rambling on about this shit because I'm on Vicodin right now! hehe

Friday, October 20, 2006

Four of six weeks of chemoradiation completed! Amazing how fast this seems to be going. I've picked up a side effect, extremely tender skin in the radiated area, but I was forewarned and I'm taking the suggested measures to mitigate that.

This is going so well so far that I'm tempted to ask the chemo oncologist if I'm in some kind of secret control group and only getting a placebo. I mean, I've had no noticeable effects yet which I would attribute to the chemo. The only thing I've seen is a bit of change in my blood levels, but I don't -feel- those. *knock on wood* Hope I get to the finish with so little effect and that the post-surgery chemo goes as well.

I really think attitude is a primary factor in coming through this thing. I still feel very positive about the treatments because I'm -doing- something to get cured. I feel good about the whole game plan, not only for my body but for the household moves, etc.

I just feel good, despite all the associated discomforts that are still there and are developing. I'm not saying I'm up to full energy like a completely well person, but damn I feel great for someone with cancer and getting chemoradiation. My attitude has got to help. In any case, it's easier to live through it all with an upbeat attitude than if I moped around all day dreading what may be next.

I thank my parents for giving me the skills to accentuate the positive. It's about the most valuable coping mechanism I have for all of life, and especially through a period like the current one. It works ;) I highly recommend it.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Half done! 3 weeks down, only 3 to go on the chemoradiation regimen! Then I get a break for most of November to prepare for surgery the first week of December. So far, so good. Minimal side effects, none of it as bad as I've had it for the 9 mos prior... and... this is the road to wellness.

I'm MIA online this weekend because Mom and Dad are in for a visit!! They're checking up on me as well as here to help me get the house shined up for an Open House on Sunday. Great to have them here of course and good for them to see I'm not wilting away. ;)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Completing my 2nd week of rads and on my 2nd round of chemo. That's two down and only four to go ;) So far, so good. As yet I'm experiencing no more discomforts than I had before we started the cure. TMI: I'm able to go better, ie, no longer requiring chemicals etc for the most part. So, there's some evidence of progress. Every little bit helps.

I have a growing collection of cards, letters, email and messages from well-wishers. Also very helpful. More than nice to have a posse of positive support ;)