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  • Writer's pictureTeri

Chemo Round 5 Recovery Update

Round 5: my chemo cocktail
Dad and I at Northside for Round 5 Chemo

Omg omg omg omg!! I'm almost done!!! On Monday, February 19th, I'll be having my last round of chemo infusion at Northside!! YESSSSSSSS.

As for my 5th round of chemo on January 29th, which my dad accompanied me to, there were no major complications. However, the nurse had to prick me three times in order to get the IV started. It's getting harder and harder for my nurses to find a good vein. A few months ago, before any of my chemo treatments started, I wrestled with whether or not I should get a port placed in me. I ultimately decided not to for a couple of reasons: 1) I'm only doing 6 rounds every three weeks and felt like I could endure getting stabbed and poked by a needle each round for my chemo and for blood work/labs; and 2) getting a port would require two minor surgery/procedure to get it placed and then also again to get it removed and would result in a scar about an inch long on my chest. However, the benefits of getting a port is that it's easier for the nurse to get an IV started and easier on the patient because you're not getting pricked multiple times. Another benefit of a port is that it helps preserve your veins. These chemo drugs are no joke and can take a toll on your veins over time and potentially leave permanent damage. So far, I've only gotten some inflammation in my veins in my right and left arm which are slightly visible though thankfully not painful. I'm hoping that I made the right choice in opting out of getting a port place and that my veins will get better after treatment is completed!

As for recovery after my 5th round, my last blog post made me realize a lot about my emotional state when I'm recovering from chemo each round. So, this round, I resolved to not let the chemo get me down and to fight against the negative thoughts. I drank more water, walked more, and gave myself time to rest without beating myself up over it. So over all, even though the symptoms remained the same, but because my emotion state has gotten better, this round wasn't too bad. Ha! Take that, chemo!

One other thing I want to mention, only because I've been obsessing over it the last few weeks: When I look at my face, it looks so foreign to me. At some point after my 3rd or 4th round, I lost my eyebrows and my eye lashes. I already lost my hair after the 2nd round. I was OK with the hair loss. However, without eyebrows and eyelashes, my face just looks so different. I guess I didn't realize how much your brows and lashes distinguishes your face. I have gotten better, though, at drawing in my eyebrows and make up helps with faking the appearance of lashes. That'll do for now, but, I can't wait for my hair to start growing back again!

Thank you, family and friends, for all your well wishes and prayers! I'm looking forward to celebrating with everyone once I complete my last round of treatment soon!

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