ok…I might as well get this right out there.
My hair is gone.
It was literally falling out in clumps and I was beginning to look like the poor dog with the mange in the movie “Steel Magnolias”
So my sweet Christine hair dresser, grabbed her clippers and came right over to my home and cut it off.
I call that defensive Chemo.
I was not shocked when I looked in the mirror and I did not cry, I was thankful to have it gone.
Ladies!!!!! Just so you know, it is liberating not to have to comb your hair AND washing it is a piece of cake. Just saying.
Further to my journey…I said I would keep you informed.
So on my second Chemo treatment….I was back in the Cancer Center and I am paying more attention to what was going on around me.
Remember I told you I have to have 4 different Chemos on the first day of each treatment.
This means the nurse changes each bag on my IV carrousel when it runs out.
I noticed when one of my bags run out of fluid (poison)…a little buzzer type thing starts to sound.
AND a little blue light flashes at the top of my IV stand.
You know where this is going don’t you?
So as the blue light is flashing and buzzing….I ask the nurses what prize, bonus or special am I getting.
You know, like the blue light special at K-Mart.
And the cancer patients sitting around me…laugh and smile….and they all chime in with… where is their prize?
I know, it is silly but if it brings a smile to anyone of these dear sweet cancer patients…then I am happy too.
Another way that makes the nurses and patients smile is when I don my red wig to get my treatment.
Each time I enter the Cancer treatment center, I receive one of those little paper bracelets with my name and birthdate.
And before a nurse will give me ANYTHING…she asks my name and my birthdate….Plus she looks at my wristband.
Of course we know why that is and it is their way of knowing who they are giving what to…. and that is a good thing.
So after giving my name and birthdate for the umpteenth time one day….I decided to say something different.
‘Name and Birthdate” says the nurse.
“Ann Margaret, age 29” says I.
The nurse looked at me and smiled.
“That is not what your bracelet says.” she replies sweetly.
“Then it says Jill St. John!” I quip.
The nurse shook her head and said…“no, it doesn’t say that either.” as she is holding my hand.
Then she surprised me by saying….“IF it doesn’t say Ann Margaret and it doesn’t say Jill St. John, what other name might be on your wristband?”
I looked at her and with a loud sigh, exaggerated my begrudged acknowledgement of my name.
I said…“Then it probably says Kari Rogers-Miller”
The nurse flashed me a great big smile and said…“you are right, but we know who you really are.”
And again more smiles and laughter around the room.
Let me just take this moment to tell you that these nurses are the most wonderful and patient people on the planet.
I adore them and when this is over, I will NEVER forget their kindness.
Today, I am exhausted, tire very easily but otherwise feeling ok….but tomorrow is the beginning of 3 days of Chemo Drip.
Those three days of Chemo really knock me around a bit.
Imagine you have the flu and are nauseous like a pregnancy nausea….And you just got off the tilt-a-whirl.
And that feeling lasts for about 8 days.
Then on about the 9th day, I begin to come out of the stupor…not completely, but enough to feel like I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
Of course the light at the end of the tunnel is not relief, but another round of Chemo.
The good news is the day before the start of the Chemo…I ALMOST feel normal.
And so it goes.
One of my readers said she wanted to know about each step of my journey so she would know how to “help” someone.
I am so fortunate because the Captain has been my “fetch and carry” and one of my twins has been helping.
Many people battle cancer by themselves and I marvel at how they manage.
I have to make myself eat…food does not interest me, nor does liquids.
I have had to have fluids administered through my port when I get dehydrated.
I have had my son hold a spoon in front of me, begging me to take one more bite…or one sip of water.
(talk about going full circle)
Little Jesse James stays close to me.
My daughter texts me daily inquiring what I had to eat and how many spoons did I eat.
I lost 9 pounds in 7 days.
Many days, I do not want to talk…but my friends know they can text me or call and leave a message and if I feel like responding I will and if I don’t…I won’t and they are okay with that.
I do love reading those texts and cards and letters and emails.
It helps me to know….my friends care and I am not forgotten.
Sometimes a message may say…just thinking of you today…. and that is enough for me.
But my dear readers….the up side is I have God holding my hand and I am encouraged to eat or drink knowing that in the end…His Will will be done.
I recite the 23rd Psalm almost hourly…and studying the Word of God brings me peace.
The verse, “‘yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For thou art with me”. gives me such comfort.
Thank you for your cards and your encouragement.
I love all of you.