Like… I literally walk at a snail’s pace. It’s hilarious.
I am currently deeply ensconced in my recovery week.
There’s not a lot exciting to report. I spend these days in bed or on the couch, doing nothing. I literally can’t leave the house, I can’t walk anywhere. I’ve got no strength, I’m just so weak. And I need to avoid infection. But that’s ok, I can just sit around and feel sorry for myself which is good. I’m trying to do like… 20 minutes of easy yoga/stretching a day.
The mouth ulcers are driving me mental. I don’t know how to explain the extent of them, my whole mouth is covered. They line my teeth, my lips, everywhere. There are hundreds, they’re huge and mean. I can’t open my mouth because they’re all in the hinge-y bit. Ugh it’s grim. But oh well, they get worse and better. Hopefully better soon! I know, I’ve complained about them before. Get some new material! Sorry.
My body aches, my back is the worst. But I sit with my wheat bag on my sore spots, baths are good, I have codeine for when I sleep, and a bed of nails that I lie on when the pain is bad (I’ll write about that on its own at some point).
This time around, I went rogue and decided to stop taking my steroids (they’re one of my four prescribed anti sickness meds). I’m such a rebel. But the result is that I have been sleeping every night. Proper sleep. It has been amazing. Compare with the 10-60 mins I got for a week last time around… Incredible. Makes a world of difference.
I’m nauseous most of the time, but not throwing up, which is such a relief. These meds are seriously amazing.
I’ve also got a cold at the moment. I’m blowing my nose constantly and coughing up lots of phlegm (lovely), so that’s annoying. Hopefully I’ll shake it soon.
The other fun thing is that I have to inject myself in the stomach every day. Let’s just do that again… I HAVE TO INJECT MYSELF IN THE STOMACH EVERY DAY!! They don’t tell you about that when you sign up. For 10 days after this round of chemo. I know, diabetics have to do it three times a day for their whole life. And I don’t know how they do it. They have all my sympathy. I’m not getting any less scared or any better at it. I had a massive freak out this morning, and it’s the 14th time I’ve done it. But I still do it. Every day. It’s a nice little syringe which is already filled for me so I don’t have to worry about any of that. I pinch a nice roll of fat in my stomach (so much sympathy also for any skinny, older people who have to do this, I imagine it would be a lot more difficult), then I stab the needle in up to the hilt (about 2cm long), have to hold it steady, slowly depress the plunger until it’s empty, then withdraw. Ugh holding it steady when you’re a bit shaky isn’t easy. The injections are called ‘Filgrastim’, and they basically make my body start producing white blood cells again after the chemo stopped it.
So currently my immune system is dead, and these injections force my body to start rebuilding my immune system again. This is the time I need to be super careful not to get any sort of infections. I have to keep taking my temperature to make sure I don’t. I also have to make sure I stay away from children – BUILT IN EXCUSE IF NEEDED. Brilliant.
But the positive side to all this all is that each day I get a little bit better. And I have short periods of time when I’m sort of ok, I just tire really easily. The cold isn’t helping this time around, but hopefully I can avoid that other times. And hopefully I can avoid picking up anything during this time that would land me in hospital. Yes let’s avoid that please.
I seem to be taking longer to recover than I did last time, but I suppose I had three weeks of chemo in a row this time around so it’s to be expected.
Most importantly, I am slowly clawing my way towards MY GOOD WEEK.
And that means everything.