Thursday, June 22, 2006

Five Down, Two to Go

I had my fifth infusion of Gemzar this week. My blood work showed that my red blood cell count fell below the borderline of anemia, but only slightly. So I was able to do chemo #5 and not have a shot this week. My CA19-9 tumor marker was back up to 2500-something a week ago. It was as high as 3600+ before I got off the clinical trial and fell in the 900 range a few weeks ago. Since it is elevated again, my oncologist wants to add another chemo drug to the mix, possibly Xeloda which is taken in pill form.

I have two more chemo sessions after this, then off one week. I'll be in Taos for a writing conference during that week off.

I got to attend the first hour of my support group last Tuesday, so I enjoyed that.

I realized this week that the oral medication that I take before chemo is a steroid which is supposed to help with nausea. I had trouble sleeping Tuesday night after my chemo treatment which was the case last week. So I'm going to see if it's okay to take Ambien on those evenings to help sleep.

So far this week, I have not had the queasiness I had last time, so I am grateful for that. My energy level is holding up well so far.

We had a good time last weekend in Colorado Springs where I had lived back in the 70's in an old house on Colorado Avenue on the west side of town. My girlfriend Alana and I went up to Manitou Springs (a little further west of where I had lived), and I bought a couple of blouses in a hippie-clothing shop that was playing music from the 70's. It was like I never left Colorado Springs. I also bought a pair of turquoise blue crocs - couldn't resist the new color.

Just up here in Colorado, occasionally dressing like a "damn hippie" (my father is muttering to me from his grave) and wearing those brightly-colored crocs!

Sincerely, Caroline

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