I have had severe diarrhea for SIX MONTHS without more than a day or two break every month or so. There is a lot that can be managed with adult diapers and medication.
And,of course, avoiding anything that resembles PNW healthy (leafy greens, whole grains, raw foods) definitely helped.
But sex and swimming were both activities that never really became a reality.
My scans still read “stable” — but crazy high tumor markers and some deeply experienced based intuition on the part of my oncologist say let’s-stay-ahead-of-this-and-switch. Both Xeloda (my current chemo) and Halaven (my next chemo) are chemos you aren’t even allowed to take until you have enough “chemo failures” under your belt. So this definitely isn’t some sort of celebration. Both Xeloda and Halaven have 11% response rates. But I got 6 months on Xeloda. I might get lucky on Halaven, too.
Halaven causes CONSTIPATION!! WHOooooooHOOOt!! And NO HAND/FOOT SYNDROME! Swimming! Sex! Long walks without sudden explosive emergencies!!
Yesterday my podiatrist, while repairing the THIRD ingrown toenail I’ve had in two months, mentioned that I remind him of an old car he had once which kept having the same expensive issue come up time after time. Yeah. Thanks, Xeloda and your Hand/Foot Syndrome!!
Speaking of cars, I realized this morning that I am in LOVE now with my beat up minivan. I love the old peeling bumper stickers, the tears in the carpet, the stains of past kid-disasters and now, the deep, acid, fruity smell of dog treats.
And you know, I really do rock those diapers. What a funny thing to have this bleeding, tender, boobless, diarrhea ridden tired body and be so dang PROUD of it. We are alive, people!
My body walked through that “you could die” prognosis and found an unlikely, rare skinny trail to continuing. Every step now is a bonus, a gift. Go BODY!
Yes, I might lose all of my hair again. Yes, this chemo might not work. But we’ve found some paths out of dark forests before. And the view of swimming in the sunshine and having sex with my husband (kids are going away next week, by the way!!) is just pretty dang good.