I had my first chemotherapy today, so far it was pretty noneventful:
1. They weighed me.
2. I took the steroids and nausea medication.
3. They got the IV going, which took three painful tries. Then they rinse it out with saline, pushed the chemo, another rinse, and sent me on my way. The infusions did not hurt very much, two of them made my arm feel a bit cold but nothing serious.
4. During the infusion I met the pharmacist who went over all the medication, and what to do about side effects (when and how to treak at home, when to call the clinic, when to go to the emergency room).
One thing that was nice was the woman sitting next to me was my age, had done the same protocol as me, and had actually worked on the same schedule I’m planning to work. (she was already done the chemo and radiation, and was doing the Herceptin, something I won’t need). She gave me a lot of good information about her experience, and it was quite encouraging to hear about somebody who had been able to work for the most part through the chemo.
Right now I feel a bit weird, kind of wired and weak at the same time, like I had too much coffee on an empty stomach! Evidently things will get worse after tomorrow, because I am having a shot called Neulasta, which may cause some bone pain for a few days. On the good side, it helps me keep up my white blood cell count which is important for immunity, especially since I have school-aged kids and plan to be working!
UPDATE: of course I was hoping I would just keep feeling mostly OK, and sail through four months of chemo with nothing to show for it but gorgeous wigs. A bit unrealistic I know. Around 4 PM I started feeling mildly queasy and achy and dizzy and it just kept increasing. I hit my absolute worst at 8 PM, queasy and dizzy and hot and cold and just miserable. Like food poisoning but nothing gross actually came out of me. I took a stemetil (prescription antinauseant) and started feeling better pretty quickly. I still don’t feel awesome and refuse to even attempt at an upright position, but nowhere near as miserable as I did a little while ago. They said to only take the stemetil if I need it…I guess I do!