Back on the cancer train. Woo. Woo.
Yep, the Lump is back, and has taken residence in a jaw muscle that controls how well I can open my mouth (current status: not very much). After an MRI, PET, CT, and biopsy, the plan was to hit it with radiation.
And then my radiation oncologist decided the area that needed re-radiation was too great (it's considered risky to do radiation in the same spot twice), so now we're doing chemo first to melt it down to a more zappable size.
Which means I get to go back through the entirety of the same treatment as last year.
Which means that I get to have a chemo port fitted. Again. This afternoon.
To understand how little I want this, you'd have to understand how delighted and relieved I was to have the previous one removed last September. It makes me feel like I have an alien implant. I hated it.
But what can you do? The port means I'll be able to have induction chemo at home, which involves being hooked up to a bag of drugs attached to a pump that I carry around in a nifty shoulder purse for a few days. The alternative is a five-day inpatient stay. You may remember how I felt about the hospital food last time.
I've already had one quick shot of chemo. A few weeks back, we tried a different cocktail (more like a wine cooler: chemo lite) to see if it would have an effect. It didn't. Which is a shame, because the side effects were minimal, at least until this week when my hair started to fall out.
The stuff I'll be starting next (and by "next" I mean "tomorrow") will be either the same as last year or a variation on it. Worse side effects, but a better result.
Despite this very crappy news, I'm feeling pretty sanguine. Again, what can you do? Getting upset isn't going to make things better. And while I realize I'm employing selective memory here, I feel like there were good days last time around.
Yes, there were bad days, and painful days, and miserable days. But there were also days I got to be with friends, and days where I played music, and days where I laughed and watched movies and read books and felt like a normal person.
When we first started this whole process again, and were trying to wrap our heads around it, The Boy wondered whether this was like having a second child: The hard work of learning how to cope has been done, and this time we have a much better idea of what to expect. I like that approach.
So I'll be posting about going through this experience agian, but also about other stuff (I still have a million photos from our trip to Spain to post, and there's another insane three-hour meal to tell you about).
Hope you'll stay along for the ride!