Monday, March 31, 2014

Stable is my new favorite word

I had another lab draw on Thursday.  This one was meant to determine if I needed the blasted Neupogen shot (which I did).  It was also my sort-of-monthly CEA check.  Needless to say, I was nervous.

I've gotten to the point where I look at the results of the lab work online before I go into the meeting with the care team.  It helps me to process the results prior to the appointment, and that way, I am not focused on a number....I am, instead, focused on what they are saying.  It also helps me to feel like I have some semblence of control in a situation that is decidedly out of my control.

My CEA came back at 7.8.  I was ecstatic.  I was sitting in the main hallway (I think they call it the Gallery at CTCA), talking with my friend Stephanie, and got the good news.  My CEA has been stable (within 1 point) for three months now.

I was over the moon.  Absolutely over the moon.  Shaking, crying, was an amazing moment, and I am so glad she was there to share it with me.

Going in to see the care team was easier, too.  I knew what I was facing, and I could focus on them and their thoughts, rather than worrying about when they were going to hand me the lab work results so I could find out where I was headed.

Good news.  Good news indeed.  We decided to change up my arsenal for combating the rash this week.  There may be a bit of medicine fatigue happening, and so they took me off of my antibiotic and hydrocortisone stuff and put me on Epiduo, which is actually an acne cream.  I will let you know how it works - right now, it is definitely having some effect, because it is causing some dryness, some sensitivity, and some tenderness on my skin.  I held off on using it last night (they said I could start out using it every other day)....and, I am hoping to give my skin a break.  I expect tonight will suck when I put it on, but hey - if it works....I am all for it.

What else?  I had chemo on Friday.  No big deal.  I am actually driving myself to and from chemo now, if you can believe that.  It's crazy when I think about it, but in a good way.

I went to the gym for the first time in too long today.  I didn't do much - 22 minutes at a slow pace on the stationary bike.  I want to try to work and build up my stamina.  In addition to that, I have also been having issues with sleeping the past few nights.  I am hoping that I can wear my body down and force it to sleep.  I am certainly tired enough.  I just haven't been able to shut my brain down.  It was on a roll last night, just jumping from random topic to random topic.  It was driving me nuts. I took an Ambien.  Didn't help.  I then resorted to taking an Ativan (which finally helped), but it made me so tired this morning I almost missed getting the kids to school.  *sigh*  We'll see how this progresses.

I think that's about it.  We scheduled my CT scan for next Thursday, with results on Friday, unless they post them online and I look at them first.  I think I am going to hold off and wait until Friday's appointment to get results.  I can look into things too much and misinterpret what is said, and thus, freak myself out.  I am not as concerned (today) as I could be.  I may get super nervous next week, but it helps knowing that my CEA has stabilized.  Admittedly, I would prefer it stabilize under 3 (which would put me in the normal range), but I'll take this.

For now.  :)


Carol Pack Urban said...

Awesome news!

Joan B said...


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