Aug 282015

Radiation-maskEver since I woke up this morning, my eyes have been flying at half mast. I didn’t sleep well last night, mostly because I was having endless dreams about medical tests, procedures, and diagnoses, and I spent the entire night trying to put the various pieces of the puzzle together in my mind to no avail.

When I woke up, I crawled out of bed, took a shower, did a little bit of work, and left for the morning.

I’ve still been having trouble with my sodium. The cancer clinic checked it the day before yesterday and the kidney doctor wanted to send me back the ER when he saw the results yesterday morning (120), but the oncologist talked him into waiting for new results. At 125, yesterday’s results were an improvement on the day before, so I got to go home.

Today’s first stop was at CVS to buy a new thermometer. I have several, but they’re so old the batteries are all dead. It’s amazing how difficult such a minor task can be when you feel like you’re walking through fog. But I was finally able to make my purchase and left for my 3rd day of chemo.

First thing this morning, they took blood again and sent it over to the hospital lab. Then they started my chemo. It lasted about an hour and a half, but I slept through most of it.

My labs came in right after my chemo. My sodium was at 130, so no hospital today. They scheduled me an appointment to have some sort of shot to boost my immunity tomorrow, and they scheduled a follow-up appointment with the oncologist on Monday morning.

After a quick trip home for lunch and a short nap, I went to the radiation oncologist’s office to do my mask setup for my radiation therapy. A woman came out and called me to the back. We went into an office and she told me she was with billing (here we go). Everywhere I go now, they’re starting to ask me for money before they even file my insurance even though I do not have a co-pay. Although I’ve been doing pretty well keeping up with the bills that have already gone through insurance, that won’t continue if I start paying all these others in advance. And I had to drop some of my work because I wasn’t going to be able to keep up with my deadlines and all of these appointments. For now, we agreed to have another discussion next week.

Following the billing inquiry, they took me back to do my radiation mask setup. It’s a good thing the oncology nurse had warned me about this because it was actually pretty scary. They strap you to a hard table so you can’t move your arms, your feet, or your head. Then they melt a plastic mask, put it over your face, and mold it to your skin. It wasn’t real hot. It felt like an elastic hand towel stretched across my face and then snapped down around all sides of my head. They probably left me in the mask for about 10 minutes while they moved the table around and did what they needed to do. Just about the time I was ready to start thrashing, they finally let me get up.

I thought my radiation therapy was supposed to start on Monday, but the woman said the doctor would have to develop a plan first, which may take a day or two. They’re supposed to call me early next week to give me a schedule.

 Posted by at 9:14 pm

  5 Responses to “Another busy day”

  1. Julie, they are putting you through the wringer! I know you are strong, though. Everything they are doing to you is only temporary. Praying for positive outcomes.

  2. I know you are going through alot and I wish I could be there for you for moral support. I know you are strong and will get through this you have so many friends who are thinking of you and praying for you. You are on my mind constantly. Big hugs!

  3. I just thought I would reach out to my favorite sister-in-law and tell you that I’ve been keeping up with your ordeal through Karen. It’s been quite a rollercoaster ride! The good news is that you are able to understand so much about what’s going on with your treatment regimen. The bad news is that you are able to understand so much about what’s going on with your treatment regimen. Personally, I think I’d prefer knowing too much rather than nothing at all!

    I hope you are able to draw strength from all the people who love and care for you. In the times when it just seems more than you can handle, use your “phone a friend”. IMHO a friendly voice trumps a blog post.

    Love you, be strong!

  4. I am so sorry that things are so rough for you now. I Ihope the prayers of all your loved ones will help. Love, Aunt Betty

  5. First sorry I am just getting to read this as I have been traveling the last couple of days. Second be strong, I don’t think I could have held still for two minutes with out freaking out. So you are doing very well by my standards. Third, Medicine seems to be about money, sorry you are caught in what I refer to as a nightmare with medicine. They want to give you all possible treatment but hey we want our now, wether it works or not. Sad if you ask me but…

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