Cancer Diary Page 6

 Dec 19, 1996
I see that it's been a month since I last updated my diary. Not much happened in the first 2 weeks and then I started my last chemo-therapy and I have felt and done very poorly ever since. I developed a sore mouth and throat that has prevented me from eating any solid food. I have been existing on Ensure and the like for 2 weeks. I lost 9 pounds in 1 week and the Dr. has decided to stop my treatment for 10-14 days so I can get some weight and strength back. I am down to 137 pounds (from a normal 155 in August.) I am also very weak and sleep 12 - 14 hours a day. A month ago I was only sleeping about 4-6 hours a day. What a change. Last Friday was to be, I thought, a major mark in my treatment. I finished my last chemo-therapy, marked the halfway point of my radiation therapy and have the tube in my chest removed. All that happened and I also started some new therapy at the University of Washington. I also threw up and started feeling miserable. I was ok that weekend but threw up again on Monday. Tuesday, when I had my weight taken I was down 9 pounds and feeling rather poorly. I am feeling better, however I cannot eat any solids yet. Hopefully, In another day or 2 I will be able to eat. And when I start back on treatment I will have some of my weight back. THE last stint will will only be 9 days at Overlake Hospital and 5 days at the U. I will do the University treatments in the afternoon and the other treatments in the morning. The reason for this is because I am going to receive a higher, and more concentrated treatment in my neck. It will not get the lymph nodes but the University has a treatment that is less powerful and will get the lymph nodes without hitting my spinal column. The side effects from the radiation are as I mentioned, sore throat and mouth, plus the skin around my neck and face is the color and consistency of old dry leather. I have a lotion to help this. Emotionally I am feeling quite well and upbeat. Kinda looking forward to Christmas, but disappointed that I can't eat all the goodies that are popping up around the house.Oh well, next year. I was told that my taste buds will come back 3 months after treatment ends. My birthday is in May, so I am hoping for a birthday dinner of turkey with all the trimmings.