Quick update, ’cause if/when I don’t update regularly, people start to think there’s something wrong.
Nothing is wrong. I had chemo last week and it went as well as chemo ever goes, with the exception of a couple of minutes following a Benedryl infusion when I couldn’t talk. My brain just stopped working and in the middle of repeating something back to Dara, my chemo buddy, I forgot what I was saying. Then I pretty much forgot how to talk. I tried to explain that I couldn’t remember what I was saying (which was strange since I forgot what I was saying as the words were coming out of my mouth), but I couldn’t figure out how to put together a sentence that would convey that thought. So other than momentary brain damage, everything is great!
And things are OK, they really are, but I am getting tired. Physically tired. I can’t quite shake it. It isn’t as bad as when I was struck down with strep, but it’s close. There have been a couple of days where I’ve spent more time in bed than out, and I expect there will be more days like this. There have been mornings where I’ve dragged myself out of bed only at nature’s urgings. I know I have reason for feeling like this, but there is this voice inside my head that tells me I’m lazing about because I’m lazy. It annoys me because I know it isn’t true, but I can’t shut the voice up. And the nerve damage in my feet is a bit more pronounced, though not enough to be a source of concern. It is, however, another source of annoyance.
Speaking of sources of annoyance, this “Scientists cure cancer, but no one takes notice” article that’s been making the rounds is really starting to piss me off. First, sensational titles like that rarely suggest the article to follow contains the truth. Second, the actual study carried out involved only five terminally ill, nothing-to-lose human subjects of which “some” experienced clinical benefits. “Some” of five does not a cure make. As this excellent blog entry notes, there is a “germ of truth” to the story, but it isn’t nearly as simple as “scientists discover cure for cancer, evil Big Pharma refuses to fund research” or however you want to spin it. I know a lot of you who read this blog probably posted links to the article, and I’m sorry for taking you to task, but it’s frustrating to see how quickly and thoroughly misinformation spreads, especially when that misinformation strikes close to home.
[Updated to include part of Sandra’s wonderful comment posted below. A few other things to add about that “scientists cure cancer” article: 1. The research was conducted in 2007 and they have since discovered that treating with DCA can actually make some forms of cancers worse. 2. Cancer is not one disease. Cancer is multiple diseases that are super complex and differ from person to person even. So to make such a general statement is simply ignorant! 3. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.]
And now for the numbers portion of this blog. I have (provided there are no more chemo disturbances) 37 days left until I complete this round of treatment. On Thursday, I will inject the first of my $225 shots into my leg to encourage my bone marrow to produce a high enough number of neutrophils to prevent further delays of chemo. I’ll do that for five days; here’s hoping it works. A single course of Neupogen costs $1,225 dollars. Thanks to workplace benefits, I pay $2.50. Just another reason to love my job.