Hi, everyone. It's been a while since I posted anything. An update - I'm doing fine. I finished up chemotherapy on October 12, and except for the fact that I tire easily, I'm feeling better every day. My hair is coming back, too - it's straighter than it was, and the color is salt-and-pepper. Actually, more salt than pepper, but I've been coloring it for twenty years, so who knows how long it's really been that way. While I'm still under the care of my oncologist and will be for a while, my prognosis is excellent.
I weathered chemo pretty well, but it wasn't fun. One of the more annoying and depressing side-effects was how my mouth went wonky. Chemo attacks fast-growing cells, which is why it used on cancer, but it can't differentiate between good fast-growing cells and bad fast-growing cells. Which is why your hair falls out and your fingernails get weird-looking, and the inside of your mouth turns into a horrible petri dish of inflammation and strange tastes.
Nothing tasted right. And food texture was really effed up. Vegetables tasted like wads of wet newspaper, chocolate like ashes. All I ate for five and a half months was vanilla ice cream, grilled cheese sandwiches (the only way I could manage bread), mashed potatoes, mac-and-cheese, the occasional hamburger with no bun, and spaghetti with lots of marinara sauce - for some reason, the sharpness of the tomato went down fairly well. Since I love to eat, it was pretty miserable.
So one of the joys of coming off chemo is the return of my mouth to working order. After about a month, I suddenly noticed things were starting to taste the way they were supposed to. The first piece of chocolate I ate that tasted like chocolate was a cause for celebration. And each day, things got more and more tasty. You can't imagine how good a salad can be, especially if it's been months since anything green passed your lips. By the time Thanksgiving rolled around, I was almost back to normal. I could eat. And boy, did I. I won't tell you how many plates of turkey and trimmings I had - it's embarrassing.
Now, all I do is shove stuff in my face. It's glorious. Although my clothes are getting tighter and tighter, and soon I will have to be rolled wherever I go, I don't care. Do you know how heavenly a bagel with lox cream cheese is? And sausage and mushroom stuffing with gravy? And a tuna fish sandwich? And a whole bag of Hershey's kisses with almonds? Ohhh, baby.
Getting better is great.