Sunday, 3 January 2016

Holiday Break: Part 1.

[I'm breaking this into two parts because as much as I was hoping for a relaxing/boring break between the last post and now, unfortunately it didn't quite turn out that way]
Happy 2016!!!!!

I hope everyone had a relaxing and joyous holiday with friends and/or family and indulged in delicious food.

I had my second round of chemotherapy on the 22nd. It was fairly uneventful just as I had hoped. Simply a very long day in a very little room. I saw the doctor, reviewed all my medication and the entire chemotherapy process, was given some Benedryl before the first infusion, had a nap during the first infusion, listened to some podcasts during the subsequent three. Isaiah picked up medication I was missing and then we returned home.

We went to NB on the 23rd and spend the following days with both mine and Isaiah's family. We had a wonderful time with everyone. Seeing as last year I was in the step-down unit where they wanted to remove my trach but I had a panic attack which resulted in an Ativan induced Christmas-afternoon nap, being home and cooking some Thai food this year was amazing. It was very relaxing to just be home participating in our ridiculous Christmas traditions.

Leftovers from our pineapple rice. Yum!
We drove back to Springhill on the 28th, between the the snow storms as I had the VON nurse arriving on the 29th for blood work and to change my PICC dressing site.

We managed to relax at home for an entire day when at 3 am on the 30th, my 29th birthday, I woke up with a high temperature. Actually, I woke up from joint pain - I started the white blood cell boosters on the 25th and started having bone pain soon afterward. I took a pain killer and realized that I was also quite warm so with much regret, took my temperature. The thermometer showed that I had a fever but I didn't want to believe it as I knew that would mean having to leave the warm bed and would ruin my birthday plans with my friends so I took it another 10 times over the following 30 minutes just to be sure. I stayed in denial until my rational side kicked in and told myself to get out of bed and go to the hospital.

[When I was discharged from the hospital mid-Dec, I was given the 'cancer yellow card' that explains what to do when my temperature reaches over 38.3oC (go to emerg ASAP). The card also explains to the health professionals in the emergency department that the person holding the card has had chemotherapy and that they need blood work drawn as well as an antibiotic ASAP.  In busy emergency departments it would jump me ahead of most people.]

We (Isaiah) cleaned off the car and we ventured onto the snow packed roads. Thankfully we live just down the hill from the Springhill hospital as the roads at 4am were terrifying. When we got there and buzzed our way in (and by the look of it, woke up the nurse), I showed the nurse the yellow card, told her my white count was very low, and asked for the appropriate antibiotics. Unfortunately, the Springhill department only has a physician on call from 8pm-8am and when the nurse checked my temperature, it was slightly less than 38 degrees. The physician decided that since the blood lab was closed and nothing could be tested, it would be best if I went home and returned at 8am. In the meantime, if I got worse, I was to drive to the Amherst hospital to get everything done there.

To be continued...

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