Archive | September, 2012

Humbled

30 Sep

Today is Sunday and I am up pretty early (5:30 am).  So, I thought it would be fitting to speak of how God has been working in my life since this is the Lord’s day.  I finished chemo treatment about 5 weeks ago.  I praise Him so much for getting me through my treatments.  It was really hard at times, but I can look back and see Him walking with me the whole way.  Since I finished treatment, so many people have been blessing me with their encouragement regarding my blog.  I’ve never written about the creation of this blog before, but when we first found out that I had breast cancer Kevan got up in front of our church and asked for prayer regarding this blog.  I wanted to give support and hope to those women out there going through the same struggles.  I have heard from a few women with breast cancer and that they were thankful for my blog.  I’ve also heard from others.  So, God has answered this prayer, but he has answered it in abundance. I am humbled to think that there are people out there reading my long and wordy posts.  It is so sweet.

In the last few weeks I have heard from so many people (men and women) regarding how much they love my blog and how it is an encouragement in their lives as well.  None of these people have breast cancer and many of them I didn’t even know were reading my blog.  How amazing is it that this little blog would have an impact on those not even walking the same journey.  That is how God works.  He is my Father and gives me so much more than I even ask for.  I am so blessed.

Thank you for your cards, texts, emails and spoken words of encouragement.  I received one of the sweetest cards I have ever received last week.  I keep it in my purse now as a reminder of those reading my blog and for encouragement.  I am overwhelmed again in this journey.  I have been overwhelmed so many times before, with all of your prayers for me, words of encouragement regarding my pain or treatment and now I am amazed again at your sweet words to me about this blog.  My prayer is that even though the journey is almost over (once I have my final surgery) it will continue to be a light to you.  That God will give me the words to say, not just for the women out there with breast cancer, but to those that may be suffering in another way.  

Kevan and I were out shopping on Friday and we ran into a friend at the store.  She mentioned how she really liked my blog and that it was so “humorous”.   Do you know what that meant to me?  That someone would think of my blog and not think about the sadness of cancer or the bad things that come with my journey….but the humor.  I loved it!  God has given me grace throughout this whole journey so that I could see the blessings and the humor throughout it.  It is not my own strength, but His that got me through it and is getting me through it. Of course, I had the bad days of feelings sorry for myself….but I am so grateful that they were few.

The night Kevan shaved my head I did start to get a little emotional.  I knew I was going to start to cry, but I prayed and God was there with me.  I didn’t cry a single tear and we laughed the whole time.  He wasn’t just there that night to give me strength when losing my hair, but He is still with me in my hair loss.  Even now I am okay with it and I know it is because He provides the strength.  On the day of my double mastectomy surgery I was in a basement room, alone and scared.  I was waiting on the nurse and doctor to come and give me a shot in both N’s to prepare for my lymph node biopsies.  I was on the verge of tears thinking about what was about to happen.  My life would be changed after this day and I was about to experience one of the most painful things I’ve ever felt.  I laid on the hospital bed and prayed that God would be with me.  I couldn’t do it alone and wouldn’t want to.  I needed Him.  Of course, He was there.  Once I prayed I felt so much better.  The sweet nurse held my hand during the procedure, my surgery came shortly after and I can hardly remember that day now.  I’m saying all this to say that it was the most pain I’ve ever been through and I can hardly remember it now.  It doesn’t matter if you are having surgery, going through a divorce, lost a loved one or suffering in another way…..pray and ask for His help.  Don’t try to do it alone.  Put your burden on Him and He will take it for you.  He also provided an army of others to be with me during this journey (my husband, my family and ALL OF YOU)…again, he answered my prayer in abundance…beyond my imagination.  The reason this blog has been an encouragement to others is because you all have been an encouragement to me.

I am humbled by all of you.  Thank you.  God is so good to me.

I thank my God every time I remember you.”  Philippians 1:3

Having Fun

26 Sep

I know I’m not writing as much lately.  I am doing so much better that there is not much to write about and I haven’t had much time now that I’m back to work.  Plus, Kevan and I are in Florida this week.  So, I haven’t had much time to write since we are running around after work visiting friends, eating at good restaurants and enjoying Florida.  I did want to post something funny though.  Like I said, we are in Florida.  It is VERY hot here compared to Tennessee.  My head is getting so hot having to wear a wig every time we go out.  I was complaining in the car today as we were coming back from our dentist appointments.  I told Kevan I couldn’t stand it anymore and I was just going to drive around bald.  I handed him my wig and told him to put it on and see how it feels.  I wanted him to feel what I feel….hot and sweaty!  

So, Kevan tried about 4 times to get my wig on right.  Lol!  Once he had it on he left it there the rest of the car ride.  As he was walking in the house (with it still on…I wish the neighbors would’ve been outside!  Bald Jayde and blonde Kevan walking in the house!) he said, “You are right….this thing is HOT….and itchy!”  I totally agree.  It is hot…..and ITCHY!  Now he knows how I feel in it!  Maybe he will let me go bald more often….but I doubt it.  ;o)

It sure made for a funny story and a funny picture…see the below before and after photos.  Although…now he wants to grow his hair out.  I said NO!  He might end up with better hair than me!  ;o)


Chemo Care Packages

21 Sep

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about chemo care packages.  So, over the last few weeks I’ve been pulling a list together.  When this journey is over I want to be able to provide those that I know going through chemo with their own chemo care package.  I won’t purchase everything, of course, but a small gift basket with a few items would be helpful.  Here are some things that I’ve come up with.  I thought some of you might also be interested.  Also, I will update this post if I think of any others.

basket

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Praise and Weight Loss/Diet Update

20 Sep

I have a huge praise.  Some of you may remember that about 6 months before I was diagnosed with breast cancer Kevan and I had decided to try and get custody of an 11-year-old boy from foster care and maybe adopt him someday.  Well, we went through all of the preparations (foster parenting classes, home study, lawyer, etc) and then I found out I had cancer.  The day of our custody court date was actually the same day that I had my mastectomy.  Anyway, I found out that he is being adopted!  I am so excited for him that he has found a good home.  They are a great Christian family and already have children so he will also have older siblings.  They all love sports and spend a lot of time doing family activities.  Many of you were praying for him (and us) and God took care of the situation and provided him a good home.  Although, I still would love God to bless us with a child (foster, adopted or biological) someday.  I’m still praying for a miracle! 

Weight Loss/Diet
I’ve lost 4 pounds so far on my diet.  I know it isn’t much, but it is very encouraging to get on the scale and see it a 1/2 a pound less almost everyday!  I’ve had a few people comment on how I should not be on a diet already or “why are you dieting?  You don’t need to lose weight”.  To answer the 2nd question…I may not look like I need to lose weight to you, but I do not feel like myself.  Before my surgery in May my legs did not rub up against each other when I walked.  This DRIVES ME NUTS.  Also, I didn’t sit down and have a roll at the top of my jeans.  This also drives me nuts.  I want to feel more like the pre-cancer Jayde.  I know I can’t fix my scars, breasts, etc….but I do have control over my weight and this is something I want to do.  I want to fit back into the clothes I’ve warn for years and not have to move up 2 sizes!  Also, I’m not able to wear my wedding rings anymore because my fingers are too big now….so I really need to lose the weight so I can put them back on again!  I don’t want to have them re-sized.  :o(

Now, to answer their first comment, “you shouldn’t be on a diet already”.  I’m not really on a “diet”.  I want it to be a lifestyle.  As I was laying around recovering from chemo I watched many cancer and overall health documentaries.  Each of them spoke on the diet of people today.  Some mentioned the “caveman” or “paleo” diets so I started doing some research.  I just want to go back to when people ate whole foods.  Foods that didn’t contain chemicals, preservatives, processing, etc.  They grew it and ate it.  It didn’t go to some factory to be processed and changed from it’s original form.  So, basically this isn’t a “diet” but something I want to move to over time.

I’m looking into finding organic grass-fed meats in our area.  My father-in-law now has chickens for us to get eggs.  I want to eat lots of organic veggies and we already grind our own organic wheat.  I will be staying away from anything that contains sugar though.  If it’s been sweetened with honey or maple syrup I’m all for it, but I don’t need the over-processed sugary foods.  I’ve read a lot of testimonies from people that were diabetic, had high blood pressure and high cholesterol that changed to this way of eating and they no longer have any of those health issues anymore.  I’ve had cancer…I don’t want to have it again.  This is a big motivation for me and I hope I can do it.  Now, I love chocolate…so I am going to find a way to get my “fix”….but until then I will try to refrain.  :o(

I’m doing pretty good so far.  I haven’t cheated.  Also, the first few weeks of this new way of eating I’m staying away from white potatoes and wheat.  I will introduce them in a few weeks.  This may sound hard, but it isn’t.  It just requires planning.  Although, I have yet to find ANY fast food I can eat.  :o(  So, if we go on a road trip it is really going to take some planning.  Kevan is getting a little annoyed with my diet when we go out because there are so many places I can’t eat.  Mexican works…I just get fajitas.  Salads work too, but dressings become a problem.  I haven’t figured it all out yet and who knows how long I’ll be able to eat like this without throwing it to the curb for a Arby’s Roast Beef and fries.  Or a big chocolate ice cream cake.  I’ll just keep praying that God will help me.

I hope you all have a wonderful day.  Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.  I’ve started to work on something that has been on my heart for some time…a local breast cancer support group…so if you think about it…please pray for me as I want to be a light and hope to those ladies around me that need support as they go through the same journey.  I’m not yet sure how I’m going to go about it, but I’ve started to type out some things, started a presentation and keep thinking up various ideas.  But, hopefully one day it will be a blessing to someone.

So Many Blessings!

16 Sep

Today was such a blessed day.  Actually, the whole week.  I was blessed by so many that I work with this week.  They told me how happy they were that I was back to work.  It was so wonderful to hear.  I was scared they might realize they didn’t need me and I’d be out of a job.  lol!  I guess I really am needed!  Feeling needed is such a nice feeling.  Being back to work has made me feel like less of a cancer patient and like things are normal again.  I actually can forget for several hours now.  If I don’t walk into the bathroom and see my bald head or start getting tired it is easy to forget what has happened over the last few months.

Yesterday, I attended a Beth Moore conference with 5 friends from church.  We had a great time together.  Beth Moore was wonderful, as usual.  Her message really spoke to my heart and it was just great to be a part of it with the other ladies from church.  I’ve done several of Beth Moore’s studies (A Heart Like His (David), Jesus the One and Only, Breaking Free) and one day I want to do her Daniel study.  This was the first time seeing her live.  Well, she was actually live in Pennsylvania, but a local church an hour away from us was doing a web simulcast so we went and watched her live there.  It was great.  There were over 150,000 women in 50 states, 96 Canadian locations, 21 International locations, 5 military basis and 2 women’s prisons watching it.  That is just AMAZING!  I really did think that it was going to be weird because it was a simulcast, but it was great.  I can’t wait to go to another one!

Then, today….church was pretty awesome!  Kevan and I were asked to do a bible study discussion this morning since our normal teacher was out of town last week.  We picked our topic and since I had already done a similar study with the ladies group I updated my Power Point Presentation and Kevan led the actual discussion.  I have been stressed out ALL WEEK because we had to do it and I wasn’t sure if the content was “perfect enough”.  I prayed and walked through it with Kevan several times.  Kevan is never worried when he has to speak.  I don’t know how he is so calm.  I freak out if I have to speak in front of others and I wasn’t even the one that had to talk today.  lol!   It really has opened my eyes to the amount of work our normal teacher (Willie) goes through.  It takes a lot of time to pull it all together.  (Thank you Willie!)  Anyway, I should not have been worried.  Kevan did a great job with the help of the Lord, of course.  We had so many slides though that instead of rushing through it the class asked us to come back another week and finish.  They loved the content.  So, we were even blessed that they want us to come back and do more!  Then, worship was AWESOME today (I included one of our worship songs below because it really spoke to me today).  Church service was just great all around.  I’m so glad we’ve been blessed with such a great church and so many great people that share their testimonies.  There are no perfect people in this world.  Sometimes, when you are in a church you feel like you can’t get close to people because then they will know that you aren’t perfect, but the people at our church are so open and honest.  They have a past just like I do.  They still struggle with things, just like I do.  Being open and honest is what makes us such a great church family.  We can be there with them in their struggle, praise the Lord with them when God blesses them, help them if they need something, cry with them when they are hurting, etc.  But, it requires us all to open up and not be scared to put ourselves out there.  I love our church!  Okay….I’m done.  I just wanted y’all to know what a great day we had and how blessed I feel.  I also need to remember this day because some Sundays Kevan and I fight all the way to church, we are grumpy and tired through the service and we just don’t feel good.  I’m glad those days aren’t that often.

Below is the song that spoke to me this morning as well as yesterday at the conference.  I’ve also included the scripture that I think inspired the writer of the song.  The last two verses are my FAVORITE verses in the bible.  I’ve underlined them.

With the song…Kevan says that where it says “if our God is for us”….change it in your mind to “since our God is for us”.  Since God IS for us.  :o)  He loves us. 

Pretend you can hear me screaming (I mean singing) at the top of my lungs:  “Our God is Healer!  Awesome in Power!”

Romans 8:31:39 –

“What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:

“For your sake we face death all day long;
    we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”




Chemo #4 Day 14: Started back to work

11 Sep

Today was a great day.  I started back to work!  Yay!  I’ve really missed my team.  I was a little scared that it was going to be hard after so many weeks off of work, but it was really great to feel like my old self again.   I am still a little slow brain-wise, but I’m sure it will all come back to me little by little.  I hope!  I didn’t sleep well last night (about 4-5 hours) because I was so anxious about today.  Hopefully, I will sleep better tonight.  Today was the first day in 2 weeks I haven’t taken a nap…so I should sleep well tonight (between the hot flashes).

Kevan and I went for a walk after work today.  I was able to walk about 1.5 miles and I had to go up a hill which was a little hard for me, but it felt great to do it.  I’m going to try to start walking everyday.  I also started a little mini-diet to see if I can get back in shape and lose a few pounds.  I didn’t want to go on a full fledged diet since my body is still healing…so it is just a “mini” one.  lol!  I REALLY want to get back to my pre-surgery weight…maybe a little less.  I’m really praying for God’s help.

Below is a picture of my arm.  It actually looks a little better today.   You can’t see in the picture, but the skin is red too and it burns and hurts.   A couple days after my chemo my arm started to burn like it does when I’m having my chemo IV.  Then, a few days after that little red blotches were appearing.  Now, it just looks like I have acne on my arm and little parts of skin are peeling.  I called the doctor last week and the nurse told me that this can happen with Taxotere.  It has “leaked” from my veins and caused the skin to burn.  If I take a bath or shower it hurts pretty bad when it hits the water.  They told me to put hydro-cortisone cream on it.  I guess it will go away eventually.  I tried to research it online, but haven’t found anything on it.  If you’ve had Taxotere and went through this as well will you please comment your experience?  I’m hoping it is done spreading and will now be going away.  REMEMBER – if you have to have chemo….GET A PORT!

I know it’s a bad pic, but it is hard to take a pic one handed.

Well….I’m feeling a bit normal today.  If I didn’t look in the mirror and see my round face and bald head….I might actually forget that I just had chemo.  It’s been a blessed day! 

Thank you Mom & Dad!

7 Sep

Today is a sad day.  My mom and dad left me!  They came to take care of me one month ago and now that I’m doing well they are headed back to Michigan.  I can’t believe it’s been a month.  There is just something about having your parents to take care of you….you can whine and they don’t get irritated with you.  lol!  I know it is time for them to go, but at the same time it has been really nice to have them here.  My mom has helped me so much with the house cleaning, laundry and meals.  I haven’t had to worry about any of it.  I don’t know how Kevan and I would’ve ate without her help…let alone had clean clothes.  :o)  It was so nice to climb into a bed at night that was made earlier in the day.  Since going through this I haven’t been making my bed and that one thing is so comforting at night.  My dad was here to drive me to my appointments and do grocery store runs for us whenever we needed anything.  He was known for running to THREE different stores if I was craving something and he couldn’t find it at the first two.  It was very sweet of him….I kept telling him he didn’t have to do that.  He mowed the lawn several times for Kevan since he’s been so busy with work.  Each little thing was such a blessing to us.

Also, I’ll miss my mom saying, “Do you need something to do drink?” or “You need to keep drinking.  You need to get that chemo out of your system!”  or “Did you take your medication?”  It is always nice to be worried about.  lol!

When my parents first decided to come I had a list of things I wanted to do with them before they left.  Cooking and baking with my mom, sewing with my mom, taking my dad to see The Hermitage, visit a friend’s farm, etc.  Well, we didn’t do any of it.  I just haven’t felt up to it.  I guess when you are a cancer patient…you really are a cancer patient…I just don’t have any energy.  This last chemo treatment has really kicked my butt and I’m having a hard time bouncing back.  Also, when I went out on leave of absence from work I had all these hopes of getting my house organized while I recuperated.  That didn’t work out either.  I actually had to recuperate and didn’t have any extra energy to do much.  I start work on Monday.  So, even though they were here a month it really was taken up with Jayde having to “get better” and we didn’t have much time for fun.  We didn’t even have a game night.  But, I really appreciated everything they did for me.

Even though we didn’t have “fun” during their visit I am grateful for them.  They gave up their whole month for me….leaving their nice house in Michigan, their grandkids and my other siblings to come take care of their sick kid.  I love you both.  I will miss you!  I thank God for you both and that He blessed me with you.  My prayer today is that you have safe travels home.  That it is an uneventful and speedy trip.  Lord, please keep them safe.

Last night we made a last minute trip to my Father-in-law’s farm to introduce my parents to his new “ladies”.  My mom wanted to meet his new chickens before they left today.  The hens are adorable!  I could hear them before we made it to their coop…..chatting to each other.  I loved it!  As some of you know I was getting chickens earlier this year, but once I was diagnosed I decided to wait.  It would’ve been too much.  So, it was a real treat to see the girls last night and think about having my own soon.  They’ve laid 4 very cute brown eggs so far.  I did wear flip flops though and one of them decided it would be fun to peck my pink nail polish.  Ouch!  I’ll have to wear close-toed shoes next time!

Here is a picture of me holding one of them.   No one else wanted to be in the picture. 


White Blood Cells (Chemo 4: Day 8)

4 Sep

White Blood Cells (WBC)…something one doesn’t think about often, but they are sooooo nice to have.  They are keeping me out of the hospital during these last few treatments.  I had my Neulasta shot last Thursday and haven’t thought twice about it until last night.  Yes, I’ve been taking my 24 hour Claritin everyday to help with the bone pain, but other than that I forgot about the possibility of the “bone pain experience”.  The Claritin helps, but doesn’t take it away.  

I couldn’t keep my eyes open last night…still feeling bad yesterday and being short of breath if I just walk across the house.  So, I went to bed early.  I had my normal night of hot flashes and didn’t sleep well.  Then, woke up at about 4am with the bone pain.  Ugh!  It is so bad.  Don’t get me wrong….I’m happy that my body is creating WBC’s….but, boy, is it PAINFUL!  

Be thankful for your WBC’s and that you aren’t feeling them being created.  I’m trying to find a position where I’m not in pain and try to lay like that for as long as I can.  The slightest move and it feels like my spine and hips are being torn out of my body.

This was my last chemo!!!  I won’t have to go through this again.  PTL!

Chemo 4: Day 7

3 Sep

It has been awhile since I’ve posted.  Mostly, because I have had chemo brain and have not been able to do much.  So far, today is the best day I’ve had since Day 3.  It is still early, but I can tell that I’m doing much better.  I woke up at 2am with a hot flash and couldn’t do back to sleep.  So, I got up to take a bath.  It helped get me tired again and then I slept on the couch until 7am (waking up every hour with a hot flash).  I have good news.  Before I took my bath I weighed myself and I have lost about 4.5 lbs.  That was so great to see.  I still have about 20 to go, but to see that this morning was very encouraging since I have not done anything yet to lose it.  :o)  I’m going to try to start my diet in a few weeks and do some walking to see how hard it is going to be to get back to my pre-surgery weight.  I’d like to get back to it before I have my final surgery and before I start tamoxifen.  Which is still, “if” I take tamoxifen (I’m still praying about it and I am still thinking “no”, but everyone else (family, Kev, doctor) is saying “yes”. 

I was able to go to church yesterday.  We usually go to Sunday School as well, but I did not have the strength, but I decided I could probably sit through church service.  When we arrived I thought I had made a mistake.  I made it to my seat, heart racing, music loud and was having a hard time.  I couldn’t stand to worship so I just sat in my seat.  I actually even had a hard time staying awake during the music…which is odd since it is pretty loud and we sit pretty close to the front!  It was also the first time I’ve showed up for church on a Sunday without a wig!  I just had a head covering and it actually didn’t cross my mind until I was leaving.  I barely got dressed and ready….a wig was not on my mind yesterday.  I may or may not have woke myself up from snoring (Shhh!).  lol!  I thought about going home, but I just don’t feel right if I skip church.  My week feels strange….I feel like I’ve missed something in my life and I didn’t want to feel that all week along with everything else.  So, I stayed.  Then, our wonderful worship team started singing the MercyMe song, “Bring the Rain” and I just felt like this song was for me.  Tears started streaming down my face (thank you CR for the tissues!) and I knew I had made the right decision to come to church.  Here are the lyrics that spoke to me….I included a youtube video at the end if you want to hear it.  It really spoke to my heart yesterday and confirmed everything I’m going through.  That this is all in His plan for me…He is here with me, this is for His Glory and He continues to bring me joy and peace through it all.  I felt so much better after this song and really enjoyed the sermon…glad I got out of the house, got myself ready….even when I didn’t want to.  It really blessed me.

Bring The Rain lyrics

I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I’ve gone through
The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You

Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It’s never really ever crossed my mind
To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times
So I pray

Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free


Bring me anything that brings You glory
And I know there’ll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that’s what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain

I am Yours regardless of
The clouds that may loom above
Because You are much greater than my pain
You who made a way for me
By suffering Your destiny
So tell me what’s a little rain
So I pray

Holy, holy, holy
Is the Lord God Almighty

Hot Flashes
The worst part right now are the hot flashes.  The doctor gave me something to take at night to help, but it hasn’t helped at all.  I wake up about every 45-50 minutes burning from the inside out.  I’m drenched in sweat….I throw my covers off…take off my head covering….fan myself for about 10 minutes to get cool again and then pray I can fall back to sleep.  I get up 1/2 through the night to change my pajamas (which are drenched and I’m freezing) and then try to go back to sleep.  It is M-I-S-E-R-A-B-L-E.  I spoke to a friend over the weekend who is on Tamoxifen and she said the first 6 months were miserable as well, as far as hot flashes.  So, if everyone else gets their way regarding the Tamoxifen, I guess I won’t be sleeping well for a long time!  Grrr!

Brain Fog
My brain fog started early during this chemo.  Normally, I do well until Day 6 or 7, but it started on the 3rd day this time.  I can still feel it and cannot think real clearly on Day 7, but it is much better.  I hate this part of chemo so much because I literally cannot do much.  I lay around, can’t comprehend movies and  can barely hold a conversation.  I also had a hard time staying awake.  SEC football started over the weekend and I slept through most of the games….and I snored!  Which is not normal for me.  I’m unsure if it is the extra weight or the chemo.  I hate it!  Luckily, the sound of the game was so loud I don’t think very many heard me.  lol!  Just my hubby. 

Intestinal Issues
Finally, after 4 chemo treatments I think I finally figured out what was best for my intestinal problems caused by the chemo.  It has not been as bad at all this time.  I started eating a handful of raisins and 4 prunes on the day of chemo (after I ate my last meal for the day) and EVERY day after chemo (after my last meal).  I drank quite a bit of apple juice (maybe 12-16 oz a day) to stay hydrated and to help with this as well.  It listed apple juice in my Chemo 101 book as a good thing for this as well and I love apple juice and hate drinking water so I was happy to do it.  Things have gone a lot better.  Not perfect, but better.  I didn’t want to take Senokot (which is what is suggested in my Chemo 101 book) as it creates a lot of pain for me and I end up lying in the floor in the bathroom for HOURS.  So, I was just trying to work with the raisins/prunes this time.  After this, I’m not sure I ever want a prune again.  lol!  But, if you have to go through chemo….try the raisins and prunes!

Hand/Feet/Arm Pain
I’ve had a lot of fingernail pain (hands and feet) the last few days.  This is normal…along with the bad taste-buds and raw tongue.  I try not to let my hands or feet in my hot bath water if I take a bath as the heat seems to make them worse.  I so love baths though…so it hasn’t stopped me.  Also, you must wear gloves if you wash dishes or it will get a lot worse.  In addition, I’m having burning pain from where the IV was in my hand and it is radiating up my arm (I don’t see anything on my hand though…it is all inside)…a lot like the pain I have during the actual Chemo infusion.  I’ve only had it about 2 days and I’m hoping it will go away.  If I still have it tomorrow I might call the doctor to see if there is something I should do to make it stop.  Also, I’m having my feet pain already, which I don’t normally have until the second week.  My hubby gave me a foot massage yesterday and it did help.  Not sure what causes this.

Hair Loss
I still believe the hair loss during chemo is a blessing for me.  Maybe I could’ve just cut my hair short, but not having to worry about my hair during all of this (washing, conditioning, drying, styling) has been such a blessing.  I know that probably sounds crazy, but after my surgery, early chemo and in the hospital it was such a burden to have to deal with.  It has been nice to not have that as another thing to deal with.  I am now looking forward to it growing back though!  We will be buying some Biotin tablets (my oncologist said it was okay) and I’ve heard it will help the hair grow back faster.  I’ll keep you updated!  I do have a little peach fuzz, but I don’t know if that will fall out or not since I’m only 7 days out from Chemo 4.