As you know by now, every day is an adventure when getting chemo. I never know what new symptom will reveal itself each day. For the past few weeks, I’ve def felt the fatigue catching up with me. We live in SF and our house is on a slight (by SF standards, anyway) hill. In the past three weeks, I’ve noticed that the climb up the hill leaves me pretty winded. Since my first Taxol infusion last week, it’s only gotten worse. I officially feel “cancer-y” — and, I hate to admit it, but I look sort of cancer-y as well. Especially when I’m just hanging at home without make-up on.
In addition to really feeling the fatigue, the latest is that I’ve been running a low-grade fever every night since last Thursday. The weird thing is — I’m totally fine during the day, but at about 5pm every evening, I get the chills and the fever sets in. Tonight is no exception.
Paul has been getting a good laugh out of this because I add layer upon layer to my body to try and get warmer — I look like a complete bag lady! In the past few days, I’ve been known to wear two robes and have a third draped over me as a blanket (all of this is in addition to layers of real blankets and comforters). Oy!
We checked with Garrett and he says we don’t need to worry — we will be seeing him tomorrow for my second Taxol infusion and he’ll check my white blood cell counts then (though he doesn’t think they will be the culprit as much as your standard cold virus). In the meantime, the RX is “steady as she goes”.
Anyway, the whole point of this post is to divulge the most disgusting thing that’s happened to me yet. You know how when you get the chills your whole body sort of tightens up, shivers run through it and your muscles involuntarily flex? Well, that’s been happening to me every night for 5 nights. At first I didn’t really notice anything weird, but last night it dawned on me — underneath all my layers — every time I shiver, I feel my expanders tighten and rise up (like, noticeably rise up). So this morning, after I took a shower and was getting ready, I stood in front of my mirror and tried to flex my chest — to my utter dismay, my breasts literally flexed. I can flex each one independently of the other like a male body builder WTF?
As if I’m not already dealing with enough body-image issues, I now have to add this to the list?
I called Paul immediately. I was in a complete panic. He tried to laugh it off and joke about it with me — which I erupted at. Once he realized how distraught I was, he changed his tactic and tried to plant the seed in my head that I can flex right now because it’s just my expanders and not the real implants. This approach was a little more effective.
I’ll ask Julie and Dr. Hong about this the next time I see them and report back to you. For now, I’ll just take a lorazepam and try to get out of my head about it.
As I mentioned above, we are off to chemo again tomorrow. Maybe I can convince Paul to do a post while we’re there and I’m in la la land from the benadryl!
Final thought for this evening — a fellow BAYS warrior, Meaghan, is having her mastectomy tomorrow. Please send all your healing vibes and strength her way.