Well, clearly this crowd loves to party! The RSVPs are great – keep ‘em coming, we’ve got a guest list to tally and waive around in cancer’s face! Also, it looks like we’ll be needing to up the tequila order.
Speaking of poisons and elixers, I am off to chemo again tomorrow. This new schedule is a two-weeks-on /one-week-off cycle, where I get both gemcitabine and cisplatin one week, just gemcitabine the next, and a week off before repeating the cycle. The cisplatin + gemcitabine day is tomorrow, and it’s a looooong one because they have to dose me up with so much fluid and diuretic to protect my kidneys. This is because “cisplatin can be incredibly hard on your kidneys.” I love it when they say things like that. Another recent favourite was that “these drugs can cause permanent hearing loss.” When my doctor told me that I said “Pardon me?” She didn’t get it.
So, my schedule tomorrow begins at the clinic at 8AM and involves a lot of IV action until about 4PM. Then I go home and, instead of crashing, I run rampant and eat everything in sight, since I’ll be hopped up on steroids. A day or two later, after the steroids wear off and the side effects begin to kick in, then I crash. And how!
But I don’t mind. My friend Libby had inoperable pancreatic cancer and this combination of drugs erased it. Knocked it down to the point where they could in fact operate and, yes, she spent six hours on the operating table getting rid of the scraps, but the point is that she got rid of it. All of it. More than a year ago. I don’t know about you but I’m impressed. Also hopeful.
Eight hours in the chemo ward may not be anybody’s idea of a great day, but it doesn’t mean it’s not a day well spent. Bring it, I say.