...When Others Aren't
I was in good spirits, the morning of my last chemo! Don and I are were in festive, not exactly matching get-ups. I mixed it up with my embroidered Mexican blouse from a thrift shop 20 years ago, a Guatemalan scarf and moccasins. Don was straight western from boots to hat to bolo tie. We were happy to go get started.
But before we left, I scrambled to gather something for the other patients. Don had ordered a huge box of these wonderful lemon drops... after some research for best treat for soothing chemo mouth. I tagged them with pink hearts, so I could offer something to the patients who might need a boost.
We arrived at 9 and the office was hectic. My dear friends at the desk were working overtime. Poor Lala wore a surgical mask... shielding us from her cough. My happiest team was tied up on phones and looking rushed.
The lab nurses were in decent spirits. One said she used to do embroidery just like the designs on my blouse. We jibber jabbered so much, that I forgot to warn her I needed extra blood work done for my med study. This lead to lots of fretting 20 minutes later when my study nurse came in and they tried to get samples before chemo and my veins weren't cooperating. I had 2 more tries, including the most painful on my hand, before they switched nurses for a fresh attempt. The 4th poke of my morning, was a winner.
The woman next to me couldn't thank me enough. A couple of men spoke little English, but offered smiles and I saw one nibbling, right away. Don sipped on coffee and I gulped down my water, while we killed time. We couldn't possibly be frustrated at the wait when we looked around us.
I was cleared to go, but it still took forever to get hooked up with my "cocktail". There were so many with special needs around me.
2 different men left the room to be sick. One woman had concerns that she would need a transfusion and her upcoming surgery would be delayed. Another woman was weary, but smiley. It was her last treatment also... she had had 14... and I had only endured 4! I ached for these people.
I didn't even care how long the day dragged out. I was almost done with this chemo stuff. I did't even fret about the rough days that were ahead. I'm game to lay low a while before I start getting back to normal. And mostly I was content to spend quiet time in my funny recliner (that likes to catapult me if I'm not careful with the lever) I flipped through the most incredible book of New York photos and I worked with Puzzle Man Don on a 6 sided puzzle... while at the same time, those drips entered my bloodstream to zap anything bad that might possibly be left in me!
5 hours later, I was given the little bell to ring, for ending my treatments! Dr. P and his wonderful nurse practitioner, Alicia, came out to congratulate. Other nurses and staff rushed in to cheer me on. I'd been told about dancing, and wasn't sure if that was a joke. But I did a half minute, subdued jig and cringed at waking a few patients from their dozing. But a few clapped and wished me well.
Chemo is done. More lies ahead with return visits and starting up radiation. But the thing I feared the most is over!
I started this complaining list/blog, in May 2016. I posted 200 gripes about my breast cancer and then I was done.
On March 13, 2020, I started venting all over again, when another disease (starting with a C) interfered with my life. Only this time, it was affecting more than me. I ranted for a year, until I got my vaccine in March 2021.
Coronary Artery Disease was the reason I restarted this blog on September 26, 2021. This time it was Don who was dealing with a worry that started with the letter "C".
Coronavirus and Cancer, Coronary Artery Disease! All are evil, but none can totally get me down... if I vent! I usually end up feeling a little more positive at the end of each post!