Well, that’s it done. My final chemo session was on September 11th and I’m simply over the moon! That’s all folks; that’s all. There’s still more to come, to get rid of this naughty tumour, but having the chemotherapy out of the way is such a massive weight off my shoulders. I can now move forward without dreading every third week of treatment. Also, the weekly visits to the hospital to have my PICC Line cleaned are no longer needed because they removed it on the same day… My body can start its recovery process and I can once again take a soak in the tub. Hurrah!
Over the past few weeks, I’ve noticed that the treatment has really been taking its toll. Aside from all the usual side effects, my legs have been feeling really weak, and the slightest gradient in a road has me huffing and puffing and struggling to walk. I’ve lost feeling in the ends of some of my fingers, and most of my nails are tender to touch and continuously hurt. I’m finding it totally impossible to open lots of things, and boy is that tough, as my appetite has gone through the roof and much food needs to be opened!
Life is not at all unbearable, but it has all sort of crept up on me and I dare say it will take a while for me to get back to normal. I’ve heard that fingernails can drop off up to eight weeks after the final treatment (chemo just keeps giving), but in my case it seems to have worked a treat so far, so I’m not going to grumble. *grumbles *
I’m also currently suffering badly with dry eye – another side effect of the treatment, which isn’t helped by the fact that my eyelashes haven’t grown back yet. My eyes are continuously streaming and as a result, the skin under them is not in great condition. I’ve taken to walking around with a pocket full of cotton buds to dab the tears away with, but my lids still get wet and crusty, which makes it hard to blink comfortably. It’s another one of those strong looks that I’m channelling as well as I can.
My hair started to grow back a month or so ago, and I decided to shave it off again the other day. On the advice of a few other cancer patients and my hairdresser, Alex took a razer to it and got rid. The sides were growing back much faster than the top fluff, and shaving it all off after the last chemo is said to help the re-growth. I wasn’t too upset when I lost my hair at the start, but now my body feels like it’s falling apart, I actually can’t wait for it to grow back. I’m now at a point where I really feel like a cancer patient, and there doesn’t seem to be much I can do do glam it up. Luckily every day I get a step closer to the end goal.
Next up, I’ve got my Lumpectomy (October 9th), but before that I’ve got about a zillion other appointments at the hospital. They apparently haven’t seen enough of my lovely face – MRI’s, ultrasounds and God knows what else… I literally can’t keep track and am hoping I don’t miss any of them with this chemo brain of mine!
The good news is that I’m off on my Willow Special Day on Monday. We’re heading to St Mawes to stay in a lovely hotel by the sea. I’m hoping I’ve got my taste back by then because I could really do with a gin or three.
Until next time x
Alex was quite ill in bed on the day of my last chemo, but he arranged this little surprise for me the day after. It’s only a bloomin’ flamingo balloon!
As you can see, Betsy is still living the dream whilst I spend quite a lot of my time in bed!