Taxol and Avastin plus Procrit: spa day with chemo 3.1.3

After my surgery 1/30/09 at UC Irvine Medical Center, they transferred me to a rehab facility. After a few days I found it easier to think of it as the spa than as a rehab center. My lovely room mate and I chatted in the mornings over the Today Show in the background while we put on our makeup to look our best. We welcomed visits to our room as Spa St. Edna. I feel the same about Chao. It feels more like a spa, enriching me physically and emotionally from the moment I walk in to the moment I leave. It may sound silly, but thinking about the experience this way helps to ease the stress associated with going for chemo.

bloodTestKarenQuick rundown of today’s menu. Karen took my blood for CBC tests plus urine sample. After being stamped chemo worthy, I got settled into my assigned room 2, and smiling, sweet Jessica came to take my vitals; all were fine. As usual, we had a nice but brief conversation before she ran off to take care of others in the typically crowded infusion center. Then, Claudia came by to let me know she’d be my nurse today: much to my own personal delight, though I’m sure she gets assigned to me me by drawing the short straw :). Later, I got another visit from Rochelle, who dropped off a prescription for me because my urine test showed bacteria and blood, the first time I’ve ever had any symptoms of urinary tract infection. I know I haven’t been drinking sufficient fluids, so here I go with my water bottle and tomorrow a trip to the store for cranberry juice.

Marvin took off to the cafeteria for our breakfast and returned today without our usual burritos: they had stopped making breakfast burritos for the day, so he brought me some scrambled eggs and a cinnamon roll. And, he brought me a little white bag from the gift shop with not just a gorgeous black and gold abstract patterned scarf but a little crystal peach pin and a crystal studded nail file, one of those girly items you seem to need in multiples.

Claudia, meanwhile, brought the usual prep drugs: Decadron®, Zantac®, Zofran® and Benadryl®.  As usual, she’s always attentive while skipping back and forth from me to her other patients. She came back with Jennifer to do the required verifications for my Taxol® 126 mg and Avastin® (surprise: I forgot the dosage).  Then, it’s just a matter of waiting for the infusions to run. After those two were finished, Claudia gave me an injection to my tummy of Procrit® for the anemia: my hemoglobin was less than 10, the requirement for administering any erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs).

relaxing after chemo with frozen yogurt and books

relaxing after chemo with frozen yogurt and books

We were surprised how hot it had gotten when we left, 93 degrees on the big digital readout we saw on the road to one of our errands. After indulging in frozen yogurt we headed to Border’s to hang for a while with recreational reading material. Marvin closed his eyes and nearly dozed off while finally relaxing. It has seemed like a long week, so the prologue to the weekend was welcome.

Tonight, I’m doing research while Marvin is working on one of our servers. I’m lucky that he takes care of all of that since I have neither the skill nor the patience to troubleshoot on the scale that he does. I love all of the benefits of being married to a geek :). My current favorite: playing our downloaded music on our stereo and being able to view the menu of music on the large TV screen. This is so much better than having to look at the small readouts on an iPod or Sirius gizmo. He’s been transferring to the server our collections of music: between us, close to 1000 CDs, so we have a lot to choose from for tap dancing, jazz dancing, silly dancing (who me?), slow dancing . . .
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© 2004-2009 Donna Peach. All rights reserved.

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