Tuesday, 23 June 2009

I'll be back soon!

Long silence eh? One entry only for the month of June? It is because I'm keeping myself busy as in less than two months, I'll be in my home country! Just in time for fasting month and Syawal or Eid as they term it here.

The environment is not friendly to me anymore especially during the summer as I constantly get hayfever - my eyes turn red almost everyday. I can't be taking antihistamine, the hayfever relief medicine everytime. Who knows what side effects I might have. So the best thing is to go back where I belong. Besides, my husband has to resume work in November; I can't be staying by myself here and manage everything like I did before.

Wherever I am, my work is not affected as I will still continue with my study till the end. This last two month would be a marathon for me as I need to have draft of few chapters before I leave so that I can have a peace in mind embracing Ramadhan and Syawal when I get back. I'm also preparing stuff for the conference in Dublin in August. And right after the conference, I'll fly back.

Friends who know that I'm leaving have been asking about my treatment. Well, I have completed all four cycles of the Doxorubicin and Cyclophosphamide and I'm due for either paclitaxel or ixabepilone when I get back from my course next week. I don't intend to infuse anymore drug as even if I have it, I won't be able to complete it. So, might as well not having it at all as I need the energy for my marathon as well as packing my stuff to bring back home. I haven't told my doctor yet and will do it during the next visit on 6/7/09. I'll be meeting my breast care nurse too as recently she called to find out how I was doing and she was also planning to set an appointment with the surgeon. I guess I don't need one since I'll be leaving soon. The lump is gone and I don't see a need to go for surgery. I read in the article on John Hopkin's update recently that surgery can also cause cancer cells to spread to other sites. As my mother said, "bondo elok buek apo bongka2 (in loghat Negeri Sembilan) I'd better not having surgery at all. Whether I still have it or I might be cancer-free by now, the most important thing is to watch my diet. And back home I have a ceragem massage bed where I can massage my body everyday. I read in the Internet about a lady whose cancer is cured or controlled by massaging everyday and hopefully it works on me too. No worry, Ramadhan is coming, who know I might encounter the lailatul Qadar and my wish will come true...

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

4th cycle today

I had my 4th cycle of chemo this morning. It went well although I was a little bit worried as a new nurse was doing it for me. Yesterday when she drew out blood from me, the blood spilled and stained the pillow as well. Luckily today she was handling it well. I noticed that the doses of Doxorubicin and Cyclophosphamide were reduced and the infusion took lesser time to complete. Thank God this is the last dose of these drugs and I'm responding well to the treatment; the lump has shrunk around 50%. At times I could not feel the lump anymore :-)

My next appointment with the Oncologist will be in a month time. I managed to psycho them to postpone the next one for a week because I need to go for a week course in Warwick. When I come back from the course, I'd have to for more checkups like echo test, ct scan etc for them to select at random of which drug I'll have for the next 12 weeks. If it's Ixabepilone, I'll have it every three weeks which I prefer as I'll have time to go for the conference in Dublin this coming August. If it's paclitaxel, too bad I will have it weekly for 12 weeks, meaning more frequent trips to the hospital. Luckily they are sending a taxi everytime I go to the hospital, as part of the clinical trial deal. Allah is great; when we have no car, He makes it easy for me to go to and come back from the hospital at ease. Every ride to the hospital, I keep thinking how fortunate I'm and for that, Alhamdulillah...

Early of the month, the weather was bright and shiny and my biggest obstacle during this season is hay fever. I cannot stand the pollen, and as the result my eyes were swollen red last week. Now that the weather is a bit cooler, and it rains almost everyday, the pollen is controlled and my eyes are back to normal. I can't take any chances and during my appointment last Monday, I requested for some medication to treat the symptoms of hay fever. I now have Chlorphenamine for that.

All in all, I can't wait til this is over. I can't wait to go back home especially now that it's durian season in my hometown. Will the cancer like durian? I don't know and I don't care, if the king fruit is in front of me, I can easily eat 3 or 4 whole fruit at one go. Imagine how good the smell of the urine will be. I really get tired of my urine smell now - the smell of drugs...