Friday, June 1, 2012

Radiation Over, Moving Forward

I have taken the past few weeks off from blogging basically because I was a little overwhelmed with everything and needed a break. Now I am back and will catch you all up with everything that has been going on.

I have had my 14 sessions of radiation. The last one was this morning, and I got to keep the mask (which is currently sitting on my desk and I am debating what to do with it - paint it, target practice, or bonfire - you can log in your suggestions as well :) The treatments went quite well and the side effects were minimal. The only real issue I had was a sore throat and that was expected. Hopefully it will go away in the next few days. I was not tired or worn down like many are and I was able to keep doing everything I have done at work and with my family. Overall it was not a large change, just an extra trip to the hospital every day for three weeks.

A few days ago I started having some headaches as well. They are not as bad as the cluster headaches that I get, but they are annoying. The worst part is that they make my mind wander as to what could be causing them. I think it is more likely that I am anxious to get back on my new pill and start that leg of the treatment.

As for the pill, I meet with my medical oncologist next Tuesday and I am fairly certain that I will start the pill then. I am looking forward to this stage because it is the treatment that holds the greatest hope for me at this time. I have heard many positive stories about it and so I am anxious to get going with it. It will also take 2 months before I know how it is working. They need that much time for the drug to do what it is supposed to, so it will probably be in August when I have my next PET scan.

Some of the emotional stuff that has been going on is trying to be organized for the "just in case" moments. I am one who likes to be prepared for anything, and so I have been putting together files and folders for what might be, and that is emotionally exhausting. Hopefully all of that will be done in the next few days and I can leave it behind me.

I also try to find more ways to spend with family during this time. I am looking at ways to make some lasting memories and take lots of pictures, especially funny ones with everyone smiling or sticking their tongues out. These are the moments of joy that help when the moments of struggle come.

And I am still planning things for the future, both for the church and for my life. I am looking at some trips to take, maybe coming to the Cities to see people again later this summer, and some creative ideas at the office. All of this excites me and keeps me focused as well.

So I will update again next week after I meet with the doctor, and please let me know what you think I should do with the mask!

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