Happy Saturday, friends! I feel like I have been gone from here for far too long, so sorry! This week has been quite busy. Here are a few updates of this past week…
This week’s checkup was similar to the previous one. There has not been any changes to my tumor or lymph nodes so it isn’t growing (yay!) but it isn’t shrinking either (boo). Since it isn’t growing, we are continuing on the current path to finish the next 2 treatments that include Perjetta and Herceptin before moving on to surgery and radiation. If it were growing, we would stop treatments and move right into surgery. Though I am disappointed that the shrinking seems to have stopped, I still have faith that I will be cured at the end of this journey!
I asked why my cancer seems to be an outlier from previous HER2 positive treatments. I learned that my cancer is not a “simple” (I use that word lightly) HER2 positive case and that my cancer contains additional features that could be delaying the tumor from shrinking. I asked about the details of those features but the medical jargon was lost on me. Knowing that my case is not standard helps me to better understand why the tumor is hanging on tight. With two more of the aggressive treatments to go, I am confident it will lose this battle and start shrinking again!
An interesting side effect has become a daily nuisance – watery eyes. The oncologist noticed my eyes watering at an appointment a few weeks ago and informed me that it is a side effect of treatment, recommending cold compresses to ease it a bit. I hadn’t really noticed the eye watering at that point but my goodness it has become a regular thing now. All day I feel as though the tears are going to spill over and I will start crying without warning. Though this is not a severe side effect, it is super annoying. Just a head’s up if we’re chatting it up and I look like I might start bawling!
They draw blood and review my counts pretty regularly throughout treatment. Each week, the doctors continue to be amazed that I am still within the “normal” range. While this is a new normal and lower than normal for a healthy adult, it is great news that I am 4 treatments in and not anemic. My white and red blood cell counts, as well as my platelets, all look good. If they didn’t, there would be the possibility of delaying treatment until the counts were brought up. I am thankful that my body continues to stay strong throughout this journey!
To add to the typically hectic work week, yesterday daycare called because little man suddenly came down with a 102 fever. An afternoon trip to the pediatrician diagnosed a double ear infection and the cold virus. He has only been off of antibiotics for about a week since his last ear infection. That makes 6 total since March – poor little guy! Next month we visit an ENT to figure out why he keeps getting these. Thankfully, the antibiotics are working fast and he is back to his energetic and smiling self this morning! Knowing that my blood cell counts are good makes for some worry-free snuggling too.
With the holidays fast approaching, I hope that everyone has a fun filled weekend with family planned. Enjoy this beautiful day!