Mambo No. 5... Oops, I Mean Chemo No. 5

That damn chemo brain got me again.  Actually, maybe thinking of the Mambo No. 5 is a good pick me up- it's so much more fun to chant "Mambo No. 5"!"

So, yes, Friday was chemo treatment number 5.  In a lot of ways, I can't believe that I'm finally here!  I only have 1 more to go! The road has been a tad on the long and windy side (especially when you're equipped with rubbery chemo legs), and mostly uphill,and I'm pretty sure my feet have been bare, and did I mention it's been a 101 degrees with zero clouds, or maybe those were just hot flashes.  Regardless, there I was bright and early on Friday morning, staring down one more mega chemo treatment in the eye. ...  Kinda feeling a little like John Wayne, without the cool gun and the cowboy boots, and minus the horse....  I will be so glad when this is behind me!  I won't miss these treatments one bit.  Sorry Charlie!

I have a standing date with my oncologist prior to each and every treatment, and this was the first time that there were things that I could check off on the "Complications" list they hand me every time I walk in there: mine is usually blank!   There have been very few snags along my chemo journey until the 4th treatment (Aka the Mack Truck Chemo Treatment), other than the pesky little cold and the rash from the Perjeta, and I feel very fortunate to have tolerated treatment so well.  (And hell, I'm very thankful that most of the issues on that sheet don't even come close to pertaining to me!  With everything else I have going on, I don't think I wanna worry about most of that stuff!) At any rate,  I think she was shocked that anything was actually awry- but my "issues" were really bothering me.  I guess that looking back on the situation, my extreme fatigue (I didn't sleep a wink on Thursday night thanks to the steroids) made everything seem just a bit worse than what it actually was, but shouldn't I be allowed to complain just a tad?   I was probably the equivalent of a tired, hungry, wet 3 month old baby at that point on Friday morning.  (The 1 hour and 30 minute wait did nothing to ease my cranky baby syndrome!  And when you add to it the small fact that we had to leave the house at 7:00 in the morning to get there for the appointment, well I am pretty sure I earned the right to be just a teensy, tiny little bit on the cranky side.)  I know that by the time I finished telling her through my sniffles about the last 3 weeks, that I needed a kleenex.

I was having a very persistent, unpleasant, and annoying tingling in my legs and fingers, it was the kind of thing that was keeping me awake at night, I couldn't get comfortable (and we all know that this breast cancer patient has more than enough issues with sleep at this point).  It's a known side effect, so truth be told, I had kind of anticipated it's arrival, however, that does not mean that I have to like it, nor do I have any intention of accepting it as the norm. I had actually thought that if it hadn't appeared by the 3rd treatment, that maybe it wasn't going to.  Boy, was I mistaken!  I suppose I could have lived with the prickling in my fingers in toes had they not been accompanied by extreme water retention (aka the jelly fish issue) in my ankles and fingers.   Those two things combined, were not a wonderfully warm and fuzzy combination.  Why is it that hearing that something is common only makes me want rid of it more?  I don't want to be "common".  And I want it gone... Vamoosh!  Where's my wand?  (Oh I forgot, I got a cape instead of a wand...)

The tingling and the jelly fish issue, coupled with some of my other teensy, tiny little complaints (sinus wonkiness, rubbery legs, aching finger nails....etc, etc, etc.)  made the doc think twice about our course of action on Friday.  She suggested giving me lasics with my treatment on Friday, decreasing my steroids, and cutting back my Taxotere.  I was very hesitant to cut back on the Taxotere,  and I came right out and told her so.  I was so afraid that cutting back would somehow compromise my ultimate goal. She assured me that this tiny little decrease probably  wasn't going to change anything....  So, that's what we did.

I slept most of the day as my sweet nurse kept filling my veins with the wonderful poison they call chemo.  It certainly makes the day go faster (my treatments are 6 hours!).  And sleep is mostly what I've done since Friday, heck, I had to catch up after that sleepless night on Thursday.  I'm not 20 any more, and even pre-cancer, sleep was extremely essential!  I definitely feel better today than I did yesterday, and tomorrow I will feel even better...


  1. Only one to go - congratulations!!
    Seems like you have great communication with your oncologist, and that's great.
    And it seems like your "wand" could be your sense of humor.. Keep it up!

    Looking forward to reading more from your story... and seeing more pics of your dogs!

    1. Thank you! Yes, I have enlisted the help of my sense of humor to get me through this journey! It's a huge help! Thanks for reading!


Back to Top