A Week of Chemo – Infusion 3

On Friday, December 29th, I had my 3rd infusion of chemo. The process each time is pretty much the same. Do the blood work and then start the IVs.

This time, I talked to the doctor about the anti-nausea meds. We’re going to try dropping the pills that make me feel like I’m recovering from anesthesia and see how it goes. If I can’t make it without the Devil Pill, so be it.

Day 1 – Saturday
Along with my chemo, I also got an acupuncture treatment today. Last time I did it the day before. We’re shooting for reducing or eliminating the nausea and hot flashes. I think it’s helping with the nausea. Not as much with the hot flashes. I feel like I’ve had more of them instead of less, but they also seem less intense. Maybe. At least I didn’t have to wring the sweat out of my PJs this time. Otherwise, I still feel pretty normal.

We ended up eating out for dinner. Because this chemo essentially kills my immunity, I’m wearing a face mask while out of the house. When I get to a restaurant, I have to ask to be seated away from other people. Mostly, the hosts/hostesses understand and try to accommodate. Our server was really nice about it, too. That said, I try to stay home and cook as much as possible so that I don’t have to be out around people, especially during cold and flu season.

Day 2 – Sunday
Today, I got up and took just the Dexamethasone. The one unfortunate side effect of this one is blurred vision and maybe the headache. So far, I haven’t felt like I’ve needed the Devil Pill. We’ll see how it goes. My energy is dropping, and I need a nap again. Although this could also be because I have company for the next 10 days that I’m not used to. Just kidding. It’s the chemo.

Well, I made it to bedtime before I needed more and different medication, so I took my other anti-nausea med, which worked for the night. It seems to have fewer side effects. I’m kind of afraid to just use it instead of the Devil Pill. I didn’t quite make it to midnight but gave it the old college try. I toasted the New Year in with a bottle of ice cold water.

Day 3 – Monday
Happy New Year! I felt okay when I got up this morning. I took the Dexamethasone on schedule, and then ended up taking the Devil Pill in the afternoon and one before bed. I can’t say enough how much I hate this stuff and how it makes me feel. Even with only 2 pills I had some feeling of woozy/coming out of anesthesia. It wasn’t as bad, but still there.

Day 4 – Tuesday
I had another acupuncture appointment this afternoon. We are still striving to cut down the nausea and flush my system. The nausea seems to be better controlled. The flush also seems to be *ahem* working. I didn’t feel like or get a nap today. I am taking only the dexamethasone today and then am done with these meds for a week until I start the cycle over again next week.

Day 5 – Wednesday
Felt normal enough today. I took the parents out for a drive up to Leavenworth. It was a long day.  I was tired but not worn out when I got home from the day’s trip. I found that I really do need to keep up the fluids. We were out and about and there weren’t enough opportunities for me to stop and drink something. By the end of the day, my mouth was dry and sore and there are a bunch of canker sores trying to form. Rinses with baking soda a few times a day and using Peroxyl mouthwash both help. I need to be better about those.

Day 6 – Thursday
Today was one of the last days this week the weather was supposed to be remotely dry. Because it’s the middle of the week, I drove into Seattle so my folks could see Pike Market and the Needle. I was tired but did it anyway. Not my best idea. It was busy but not too crowded. Thankfully, people tend to avoid me with my mask on.

I think it was a rough day for all of us. We were all tired at the outset and everybody was beat by the time we got home. By the time I got to bed, I was exhausted. I slept decently well – only got up twice to use the bathroom and went right back to sleep after both. Excedrin PM is still helping with sleep. Doing what I can to drink more fluids. Water still tastes awful and I don’t want to go overboard on Gatorade. I don’t need the electrolytes that badly.

Day 7 – Friday 
I overdid it the past couple of days, so I’m not going out anywhere if I can avoid it. I slept longer this morning and have been tired and sluggish all day. I don’t feel run down per se, but I don’t feel like doing much, either. I sent the folks to Snoqualmie Falls this afternoon so I could rest and have some “me” time. Getting them home for dinner was a bit of a cluster in the rain, but we managed. Needless to say, we all went to bed early.

Day 8 – Saturday
Another road trip day. I took the parents up to La Conner for breakfast. On the way back we saw a field or two full of snow geese. We stopped and took some pictures. We found a few barns along the way, too. Next was to take the ferry to the Peninsula and go to the CB’s Nuts factory. That was a big hit. We walked around Port Gamble a little. The homes there are all preserved from the mid-1800s. Next up, Poulsbo. Another historic town on the Peninsula. Similar to Leavenworth, this one is themed Norwegian. IMO, it’s not done as well as Leavenworth, but they try. Dad was hoping to find a true Norwegian there. Luckily, I found him one. LOL There are a lot of little shops here. One of the main attractions is Sluy’s Bakery. Another place I try to go is the Marina Market. Their claim to fame is being the Licorice Shrine. By the time we got there, it was raining and starting to get dark. We hit a couple of stores and the bakery and were off to find dinner. We found it at Anthony’s in Bremerton. The folks had been jonesing for some fresh seafood here on the “coast.” Anthony’s not only obliged them with some fresh seafood, but they were awesome in accommodating my seating requests and making a subtle change in one of our orders. The folks were over the Moon!

As far as how I felt all day… I could have packed and consumed more fluids. I had some tea and some juice with breakfast. We had a snack on the ferry. I got a couple of sips of orange Fanta. I had water and a beer for dinner, and then drank a full liter when I got home, which helped.

Day 9 – Sunday 
We stayed pretty close to home today. Getting things packed for the parents’ trip home. We were doing some house cleaning, too. I get hot and sweaty and need to take more breaks when doing housework. I’m in the process of trying to find a cleaning service that will come and help me for free. Cleaning for a Reason is a non-profit who’s mission is to provide free cleaning services for women with any type of cancer. They have a few providers in my area.

Day 10 – Monday
Today was get up and get the folks on the way back home. Dad and I ran a couple of errands before coming home for lunch and then picking up Mom and heading to the Amtrak station downtown. The train left on time at 4:40 pm. I was back home and resting about an hour later.

I have one infusion with this chemo cocktail at the end of the week. I’m hoping to minimize the nausea issues in a similar way to this past infusion. In two weeks, I start the other type of chemo. I’m hearing it’s better in some ways and similar in others. I will learn a lot more on Friday when I go for my last AC treatment.

About Pink Ribbon Road

This blog is about receiving and living with a breast cancer diagnosis.
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3 Responses to A Week of Chemo – Infusion 3

  1. Renee Gjerde says:

    I am playing catch up with your messages. Did you ever find a free house cleaner? I sure hope so. What a great service for those who really need it.


  2. Janet Oswald says:

    I have had you in my prayers Lori! Thank you for sharing! You are an awe some writer!


  3. Gail says:

    Nice that you were still able to get out and about with your folks and see some sights! Hang in there and stay away from the cold and flu.


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