There’s No Whining in Baseball but There IS Whining Through ACT #Chemo

IMG_2353

I was searching old photos to try to find one of me playing softball or some sort of sport and couldn’t find one. But I did find a bunch of me with some pretty crazy hairdos over the years.

In my last blog post I told you how I was never very good at softball…. that was my sister’s department. She was the star pitcher and hitter I was the stinky catcher who always struck out and almost always missed the ball she’d pitch directly into my glove. Each of us have our own unique gifts and talents and mine definitely was not sports!

But now, figuratively, I’m looking at this Metaplastic Carcinoma breast cancer battle as a game in the game of life. I can either try my best and try to hit back at the curveballs I’ve been thrown, or curl up in a ball, cry and give up.  I think we all know how I’ve chosen to play this game. As Tom Hanks once said, “There’s no crying in baseball.” But, unfortunately, there is crying, and some whining, while undergoing ACT chemo.

I was hesitating to update my blog because I didn’t feel I had anything uplifting or inspirational to say. The last few days have been pretty tough. So far I have had 2 of the 4 A/C part of the ACT chemo. A stands for Adriamycin and C stands for Cytoxan. My doctor said I may have some of the following side effects, but not all. Info from Chemocare.com.

Adriamycin Side Effects:

  • Decrease of white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets
  • Hair loss
  • Mouth sores
  • Nail changes
  • Discolored urine
  • Severe sunburn with sun exposure
  • Nausea, dizziness, fatigue

Cytoxan Side Effects:

  • Decrease of white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets
  • Mouth sores
  • Decreased appetite
  • Taste changes (metal taste in mouth)
  • Hair loss or thinning
  • Changes in menstrual cycle
  • Bladder irritation
  • Nasal congestion/bloody noses

I get my A/C treatments every other Thursday, followed by a shot of Neulasta on Fridays to boost my white blood cell counts.

Neulasta Side Effects:

  • Bone pain
  • Pain in your arms or legs
  • Bruising, swelling, pain, redness, or a hard lump where the injection was given

Unfortunately I have had almost all of the side effects listed for the A/C and Neulasta. I’ve had pain in my back and ribs, mouth sores, and pain in my scalp due to the hair loss. I’ve also been very nauseous and dizzy since last Thursday’s treatment and don’t feel safe to drive. Last night the muscle pain in my legs was really harsh which made me nervous for the next 2 A/C treatments to come.

The doctor prescribed three different anti-nausea meds which, unfortunately, mess with the digestive system. So do I want to be nauseous or have proper digestion? That’s my choice.

Do I sound like I’m whining? Maybe. Do I have the right? My breast cancer sisters say YES! ACT chemo is very harsh and its effects last for over two years in your body even after you’re all done. Anyone who has been through it knows exactly what I am going through and how tough it can be. One woman I spoke with said she used to carry a pot in her car in case she had to get sick. Another said she did nothing but sleep for 18 of 24 hours in a day. I am somewhere in the middle.

Some days it’s hard to stay positive when every part of your body hurts, you’ve gotten 3 bloody noses and your hair is still painstakingly falling out strand by strand. But I know there is a light at the end of the tunnel and I will get through it.

Over the course of the last few months I have met some of the fiercest, strongest warrior sisters who have inspired me to stay strong, keep a positive attitude and keep smiling. Two A/C’s down….. 2 A/C’s to go….followed by 4 Taxol……75 days and counting! Then there’s the 6 weeks of radiation after the 16 weeks of ACT, but who’s counting?!

To support my breast cancer battle on my GoFundMe fundraising page, please click here.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: