Sorry for the delay in posting -- I can't believe how much busier my schedule seems to be when you add an afternoon trip to the hospital everyday! And with me hitting the sack at like 8 pm every night, well, that doesn't leave a lot of free time during the day.
So it turned out that what I thought was Day 1 of radiation on Tuesday was really Day 0. The first day, the radiologist just wanted some films done so the folks behind the radiation can accurately pinpoint exactly where the radiation needs to hit. So day 1 was actually Wednesday which now means I have three of them under my belt, with another 30 to go. Thankfully, the technician told me that they will take more X-Rays every five days but from now on, they can also do the radiation treatment so I will only be one day behind the schedule I had already imagined.
So how does the radiation work? Well, when I come in the office, I sign a clip board letting folks know that I am here and then I immediately go back to the dressing room to take off my top and bra and put on a hospital dressing gown. Once I have done that, I take a seat in the radiation waiting room and wait to be called. The first day I was there by myself but ever since then, I have bumped into the 2:00 PM and 2:30 patients (I am the 2:15 girl). It's been nice to talk to other folks about this experience -- but both of these women are almost finished so it's tough being the newbie.
After I am called, I go back to the radiation room and I am placed in my "cradle" (the thingie those folks made last week) -- then the technicians make adjustements to the machine and I am moved around a bit. Then the docs leave the room and zap -- one side of my right breast gets the treatment; the technicians come back in and make some readjustments, leave the room again, and then zap -- the second side is done. The moments when I am on the table I have to lie perfectly still -- and wouldn't you know it! I keep getting a nose itch every single time! But the whole process on each side is just a few minutes. When I am done, I hop off and change and that's it. The drive to get there (Chesterfield) is definitely the suckiest part -- I seriously need to download some books onto my iPod. It's about 45 minutes from work and then the drive home (back to downtown) varies by the darn traffic.
I was told that one side effect is feeling tired but with the chemo I am already getting, I haven't noticed a difference yet. But my breast is already swollen and sore to the touch. Not happpy that this has already happened three treatments in but I am hopeful that this will be as worse as it gets.
Today Jim and are off with friends to see "High" at the St Louis Repatory Theater and then we are meeting other friends at the St Louis Poetry Center Trivia Night. And somewhere along the way I need to finish reading some essays!
PS: As a note any of my ENG 102 students who have a research scavenger hunt due tomorrow (the Dianna Seach Assignment), one of the answers is that I taught at Canterbury Christ Church University in Caterbury, England, in 2007!) That is the toughest one to find since the original web page is no longer available. Who will be smart enough to check this blog?!