Day 1 – I had to give myself permission to nap
In all my pushes to make sure I’m getting enough exercise, I had lost sight of my need for sleep – or a least a little more sleep than I usually get. I got quite a bit of sleep last night, but by 2pm I was knackered. I had to realize that I should stop pushing myself and just take a nap … so two hours later I woke up feeling refreshed.
We managed to get all the crazy stuff sorted for the nuelasta shot, and I now have it sitting in my fridge. We will do it when Scott gets home – as I don’t want to be alone. I’ve taken the recommended allergy meds (in my case Reactin) and an NSAID – which were both recommended by my oncologist.
I am finding that the advice via different people is very variable. Nurses tend to provide advice on the extreme side of things (absolutely no alcohol, no swimming, no biking, etc). They tend to provide advice based upon the worst case scenario, but also discount the mental health benefits in the treatment. The need to exercises (bike and swim) are important to my mental health, which is just as important in my healing. The Oncologist was good – he explained the chemo cycle – and said it was OK to swim the first week, but as my counts get low to stop swimming until the counts return. He said it was OK to have the occasional glass of wine, but don’t get fall down drunk cause they are worried about low platelet leading to excessive bleeding. So, there is a period in the middle when infection is of greater concern then otherwise, and that is when I need to be careful – I don’t need to be overly careful of the time, especially at the cost of my mental health.
In other news, one of the packages I received yesterday was my new RoadID. These are shoe tags that say who I am and provide emergency contact information. I added to these that I’m being treated at the Stanford Cancer Center, which would provide EMS folks with enough information to get my medical information in the case of emergency. So, when I’m out biking, I now have a road ID tag for each pair of my shoes. They sent me an extra one because of a mixup in the order, so now I need to decide where to put it. Might add attach it to my purse.
I’m not sure yet if the chemo smell is still something that I’m experiencing from the inside or the outside. Scott doesn’t have a strong nose for scents so he doesn’t really notice. I decided to wash the bedsheets and anything I wore yesterday, to see if the smell clears. I know I’m not at the 48 hour mark yet, so I could still be excreting the smells, but i figured washing the sheets couldn’t hurt.
I do notice the flavour of things having changed and this can be directly related to the smell. I sent Scott out for a bottle of ginger ale (Canada Dry to be specific as that is the specific brand that I like). Turns out it tastes nothing like ginger ale – almost revolting actually … hopefully I’ll get those taste buds back in a few days!
I think the nausea is starting to abate a bit. I’m controlling it, but it isn’t pleasant. Yesterday, I certainly felt the crash after the steroids from the pre-chemo treatment wore off. By about 5pm I was dragging and feeling flu-y. I’m going to have to learn that when I feel that way, I should just nap for a couple of hours (assuming my temperature is OK) it often coincides with more nausea which is also helped by sleeping, as it may be the new way my body has of telling me it’s tired.