Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Allies Rule

For the last two nights, I have written about today's plan and the vision I had for how I had hoped it would go. I described my vision of walking into Dana Farber feeling proud, healthy, and strong. Feeling ready to welcome my Allies into this war. Today, I was again blessed when that hopeful vision became an even better reality. 

After three hours of sleep last night (proof that the steroids definitely overpowered the Ativan), nine hours at Dana Farber, and almost two hours of commuting, I'm tired (and my favorite TV shows are on). Of course, there is so much to share, and I will do so at some point soon. But tonight, I thought I'd share some photos we took from my infusion space. I think these photos provide the perfect proof of the day's positive energy and huge success. Most of all, I hope that these photos reveal how comforting Dana Farber's chemotherapy suite can be, whereas before, I thought it would be absolutely terrifying.

I'll end with one quick thought that I came back to several times today as my Herceptin, Taxotere, and Cytoxan flowed by the bags full into my veins. (Yes, finally I got up the courage to learn the names of the drugs I received, and I even Googled the spellings just now. Still terrifying, but progress nonetheless.) Back to my thought of the day ... No doubt, my cancer diagnosis shocked me. I am such a regular person, without any family history of cancer, without having done anything that would put me at a known risk for the disease, and without any warning signals besides a tiny lump that I discovered on my very first self-exam. But today, what shocked me even more than that diagnosis, was the strength that a regular girl like me somehow found when she never ever thought it existed within her. Sorry, cancer -- you may have had the first shock, but I'm going to control the rest from here. So take a look at these smiles and know that you don't stand a chance.  

After my blood was drawn, my veins were ready for an easy insert of the I.V. (thanks to all that water!). Here we were waiting for the lab work to reach Dr. Bunnell and the infusion nurses so that they could give the final green light for treatment. Obviously, they did!

A few of my treasured gifts of hope.

Looking up at my Allies.

Wrapped in love.

"An apple a day keeps the doctor away." Since real apples didn't work for me, maybe these Apples will! 
Battle Mode.

Thanks to Sean's iPhone 5 (pure awesomeness), we got this panoramic photo of our room. I should mention that we somehow lucked out with the best room in the house today, and they don't all look like this. But the other ones were great too! From what I saw, the rooms all have TVs with DVD players. And kind people bring around a lunch cart with sandwiches and snacks. Who knew?!? Not me!

Taking a bathroom break after the first infusion -- a successful 90 minutes with my life-saving Herceptin. Incredible that we could just unplug that whole unit from the wall and roll it down the hall with us.
(It's battery-powered, too!)
By 4PM, we were getting itchy to go home. But not literally itchy, like after my surgery, so that was nice.

After receiving nearly seven pounds of liquid, a great treatment day comes to a close. Next treatment -- Halloween Day. I think I'll wear my pirate hat!


  1. Tara - you have NEVR been a regular girl! You have always been an outstanding example of women. I have been following your blog aand listening to you, learning from you. Keep fighting to victory! Be well, Ellen Rainie

  2. You look wonderful!! Very proud of you! Great pics :)

    I hope you are doing well today!!

  3. Good thing there are breast surgeon long island available for you, Tara. Keep up the good faith and enjoy life!