Healthy Living in the Carolinas

Chemo #3 (Oct 11-Oct 24)

Chemo #3 (Oct 11-Oct 24)

Chemo #3 is complete. Nothing eventful happened the day of and I was grateful.  It took a hour longer than it should have because of a delay in my first medication arriving to the nurses due to a new system. That was frustrating, but luckily I was working on a group art project given to me while there so time passed quicker. I sure hope that is fixed by next time. A friend stopped by between meetings for a visit and we had a nice chat.

I was blessed again with 2 weeks of very little to complain about.  God is good. My neutrophils were back up to 2.9 (from .10!!!) thanks to the shot. So I wasn’t given the Neulasta shot after this chemo round and I was grateful for that.  I anticipate them tanking again and getting the shot after my #4, but time will tell.

I have dry mouth for a couple of days after chemo, but it’s manageable. I use zylimelts as needed (I’ll link at the bottom). My biggest issue is managing my constipation. Sorry, TMI, but folks I want to share this journey in hopes to help others.  I’m getting the hang of what works and working hard to make sure I am getting enough fiber. There must be a lot of constipated people in the world because there sure is a lot of medications for this issue to choose from.  The thing that worked best for me was warming about 6 ounces prune juice and adding in a 1 Tbsp of coconut oil and drinking it in the morning. This warm prune juice advice is something my late grandma swore by and then I added in the coconut oil. I double like this because it is an all natural way to “get things moving”.

I’m consuming my 80-90 ounces of water a day. I find it VERY important, even if you don’t have cancer!  I drink high ph water with electrolytes. I find it goes down much easier too. Nice and smooth!  I have become a water snob and it’s only a little over a month in. I don’t wanna be a snob, it just happened. HA!

I continue to do all the proactive things I mentioned in previous posts. They seem to work so I will continue.  I really haven’t had much of the fatigue yet I keep hearing about. I sleep well 99% of the nights and don’t require naps, just “rest” times (which for me is a big deal because I was always go go go with full energy). I find I do get tired come evening time. If I haven’t done my workout I do it them which gives me a little boost and then chill for the remainder of the evening.

My daughter turned 14 on October 20th. She’s amazing! I am grateful for her love and support through this.  I never thought in a million years that all those teachable moments I worked so hard to create over the past 14 years would end up serving me greatly during chemo.  She is filled with compassion, positivity, kindness, humor, awareness of others and love (and trust me I could go on and on).

Train up a child in the way (s)he should go: and when (s)he is old, he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6

 

Many ask how our kids are coping with this news and I can’t speak for them, but they seem to be doing well.  I decided to tell my son I have a bad disease that requires strong medication vs using the word CANCER.  He amazes me too and often has something positive to say to me if he knows I need a little cheer up. So proud of the man he is becoming.  He asked me if I would keep my short hair after all of this because he likes it better. I told him I am never going back to the super long hair. Speaking of hair, I still have “some” hair. I haven’t even buzzed it all down yet.  I’ve worn my wig twice. I don’t mind the super short hair.

After a rocky start to the new school year due to hospital visits for testing, visitors in town and a cancer diagnosis we finally found our groove. My husband has been helping out a lot with the organization of the school work for our 4th grader.  I am very thankful for that.  He prints a weekly “to do” list on the marker board each week to hold my son accountable (and us!). Who knew if you don’t study for a test or quiz you don’t do well on it? HA!

I am very proud to report they both made straight As this grading period. My son’s teachers know our situation and will alert me if they see him struggling emotional.  I must say not a lot has changed since I was diagnosed.  I think that helps our family dynamic.  I remain pretty positive most days. Of course there are some emotional days mixed in, but it’s more about how proud I am of them and sad I have to miss out on things because of protecting my immune system.  It’s WORTH IT though to play it safe in my opinion.  Stress and worry only cause problems so my plan is to stay on top of things and acknowledge them and move on. #notTodaySatin  I am grateful for my new “lymphomies” (HL friends) that can walk this road with me.  Oh, what a blessing they have been in my life.

I remain focused on doing my treatments and following the Lord’s guidance daily. I don’t look too far into the future or it can be overwhelming. I tend to focus on one chemo to the next chemo.  I still pick my son up most days from school pick-up line and hear all about his day on the way home.  I miss all the hugs and kisses I used to get, but it’s temporary to protect my health.  I make up for it with little notes of encouragement and praise.

I still cook most dinners. I love to cook, so if I am able I  am doing it! I know harder days could be coming. I know good or bad news could be coming.  If anyone has went through chemo they know you must take it DAY BY DAY because every day has it’s own challenges, chemo related or not.  Like I have always said, “don’t take a single day for granted, it could be your last”. I continue this mind set and enjoy each day. There are many days I think to myself “am I really doing chemo?, do I really have cancer?” but the PET scan shows I do.

Thank you so much to everyone that has texted, sent me cards of encouragement, sent me gifts and prayed for me. Even the dog’s Instagram family sent me a care package. WOW!  I only know these owners and their pups online, but we are an online family just like this blog.  There is good out there online along with all the bad. It’s a matter of making sure you have your life linked up with the good. Pay attention to what you let into your life and mind daily.

I have made it my mission to pay it forward for these gifts.  It feels good to get snail mail.  I get Amazon packages weekly from myself, but that’s different. The smallest of gestures have meant the world to me.  If you find you’re struggling with something, please send me a private message and prayer request. I want to pray for you. Many still ask for my address so I will list it again here:

Angie Osborne
26 Old Fox Trail
Lake Wylie, SC 29710

My nephew made this sign for me for chemo #3.

Thanks Jackson!

Continue to pray for God’s complete healing in my life. xo Angie

 

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