Daisypath Anniversary tickers

Daisypath Anniversary tickers

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Stepping Stones

I reached a small milestone yesterday:  my first hair cut in 10 months!  Woo hoo!

Don't misunderstand:  my hair is still very short, but it was shaggy and messy enough that it needed trimming.

The normal color is starting to come back so trimming got rid of some of the white ends.  I was liking the all-white look, but having a lot more brown back won't be a bad thing.

Getting a haircut may be a small step, but it was a significant one to me. 

Haircut Happy Dance!

Monday, February 15, 2010

And The Beat Goes On...

... and the beat goes on.  La de da de de, la de da de da...

My heart beat, that is. 

Thank goodness!

I'm on a beta-blocker for my heart.  Hopefully that will strengthen it and all will be well at some point and I can cease and desist with heart meds, but it's entirely possible I'll be on the beta-blocker for life. 

Meanwhile, my cardiologist thinks I should have an angiogram just to rule out any other possible causes of the heart damage besides chemo.  Not a bad idea, but I'm putting that off for a short while until I regain some energy.  My body has been through enough over the last 10 months; I need some time to rest and recover before I subject myself to more trauma, even if it's relatively minor.

And also meanwhile, my orders for limited exercise continue:  no aerobic exercise, no heavy lifting, no shoveling, etc.  But I can walk as much as I like and as much as my body can tolerate, as long as I don't walk too fast.  I'm also getting back into yoga.  Although it's frustrating to have limitations on what I can do physically, it's also OK.  This is all small stuff after what I've been through.

And the beat goes on... and the beat goes on!

Saturday, February 6, 2010


Yes, sometimes all this feels like some kind of crazy dance.

Lately (and into the immediate future), it's the scan-scan.

Thank you, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec,
for this image that somehow captures both the French can-can,
and how I feel about all the scans I've had lately.

I still have a couple of tests coming up, but here's the results from what I've had so far:

DXA scan results (DXA measures mineral bone density.  I'm now on a daily estrogen-blocking pill that can affect bone density, and of course chemo can also alter bone density.  The DXA was to establish the baseline as I start the estrogen-blocking pill): normal, normal, normal!  That's the good news.

Muga scan results (muga measures the percentage of blood the left ventricle is pumping out into the body; 50% and above is normal.  Below 50% is not good.  They monitor this for heart damage from chemo, radiation, and Herceptin):  I went from 46% three weeks ago to 45.3% this week.   That's not good news.  I'm officially off Herceptin although I was supposed to have it until June or July.  I'm comfortable with that -- one, I certainly don't want any more heart damage. What I have now has tossed me back down in the trenches, so that's quite enough, thank you.  And two, there's some research that shows that one year on Herceptin may not be necessary, that 13 or as few as 9 weeks may be just as effective as one year.  I've had 26 weeks.

My oncologist still feels the damage is from the aftermath of Adriamycin (which, granted, is part of what saved my life, but it's one nasty treatment) and Herceptin and thinks my heart will improve; in the meantime, I'm seeing a cardiologist this week.  Hopefully he'll have some good news for me in terms of recovery.  I'm so blasted tired all the time, I can barely function, and I hate it.  This fatigue is for the birds.

For now I've been ordered to stay away from aerobic exercise or any strenuous activity.  I can walk, gently, but that's about it.

Because it wouldn't be much fun to get all through chemo and all the lovely stuff related to that, just to drop dead from a heart attack.

I and my heart appreciate all your thoughts, energy, and prayers. 

Stay tuned.   Still happy-dancin', but not strenously :)