While the last chemo was brutal, the recovery from chemo has been a world of difference from the first time around. After two days of hell and two bad days, I emerged from a cocoon on the fifth day following chemo, coming back to life. By Friday, I took two walks with the dogs and told Alan I was stir crazy, something I could not even have imagined the day before. The weekend was even better. I practiced the whole primary series of Ashtanga, a 1/1/2 hour practice I thought I could never do after the first chemo. I felt strong, and just made sure my practice was slow and steady. On Saturday, not only did I visit my mother, but I went to my niece’s for her daughter’s first birthday, and enjoyed visiting my family. They saw my new “hair” for the first time and loved it. They were happy to see me looking healthy. On Sunday, Alan and I went to a matinee performance of The Book of Mormon and enjoyed it. A few days before I could not imagine going to, let alone sitting through, that performance. It was no problem.
My appetite also came back after the fifth day. Food not only tasted good but I have cooked some food, again something I could not have imagined after the first chemo. This is a huge difference from after the first chemo, when even at the second week after chemo food was not tasting good, I had little appetite and I had to force myself to eat. Now I am trying to gain back some of the weight I already lost and I think I am succeeding. Ice cream has been very appealing to me. Unfortunately, there is a Dairy Queen close to the house. Alan loves Dairy Queen and is ALWAYS willing to go there.
My hair loss, however, continues, and I am losing it in clumps. While I thought before the weekend that it was slowing down, I was wrong. When I practiced yoga this weekend, I wore scarves. Otherwise, my wig was on at all times except when I went to bed. The hair I am losing is from my head, not from places like my legs where I would be happy about the loss. Figures…. So far, I have a little hair, and when I put on a scarf or hat, I pull out my bangs and look like I still have hair. If hair loss is all I have to deal with, c’est la vie. Better losing my hair than losing the battle with cancer.
Now that I see how recovery goes after this new protocol, even though I know chemo is brutal, I know it has an end. I know I will suffer greatly for two days, and suffer somewhat less for two days after, but then will emerge and feel good. My next chemo is next week. While I do not look forward to the brutal days, I am ready. I know I can handle it. I know the suffering is finite. I am ready for the continued battle…bring it on.