8 Oct


Taking chemo wasn’t as hard for me as I expected it to be.  As a first course of treatment, I was offered the option of choosing between a mix of Avastin and Interferon (an intravenous treatment) or Sutent (pills).  The doctors couldn’t give me an estimate on which drug would work better, but for me, it was a no-brainer.  Needles terrified me, even before I saw the “Criminal Minds” episode where the unsub, a mentally challenged woman, keeps her victims imprisoned by hooking them up to IV sedatives, fixing their hair and makeup and dressing them in clothes that she had hand-made in order to make them resemble the dolls that her father had stolen from her when she was a child.

The Sutent didn’t cause as many side effects as I thought it would.  When most people think “chemo”, it conjures up images of nausea, vomiting, and hair and nail loss, but the biggest problems I had were exhaustion and sores in my mouth and on my feet.

Because it was a pill, I didn’t mind taking it so much.  All I had to do was pop one before breakfast every day for a month, then take two weeks off, then start the cycle all over again.  My mom, on the other hand, always had a hard time watching me take it, especially on the first day after a break.  I had to remind her that taking the medicine sure as heck beat the alternatives – getting sicker or having to have the chemo pumped into me at the hospital.  As much as the idea of IV treatments made me need to crawl under a rock and hide, the thought of having a port skeeved me out even more.

My chemo experience was so different from that of other cancer patients that I didn’t always feel like I belonged to the club.


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