A few months ago, my friend Liza told me about an essay contest sponsored by the Ladies' Home Journal. The essay topic was "the day that changed your life" and all entries are due tonight at midnight. For months, I have thought about writing an entry, and on Wednesday during chemo, I finally started to draft something I wanted to submit. Just now, I printed off my final draft.
I was going to publish my essay entry tonight, but having read the fine print of the contest, I realize that an essay can't win if it's already been published. I doubt that posting on my blog means my essay has been "published," and I'm darn near certain my entry doesn't have a snow ball's chance in Hell of winning, but I'll hold off so at the very least I don't jinx myself.
Since I last wrote, Brian and I had our first adventure with Neulasta. Neulasta is the $3,000 shot that Brian gave me in my stomach last night so that my white blood cell count doesn't plummet to zilch like it did last time. We were so nervous for this fail-safe at-home procedure that after we set up all of our equipment (i.e., alcohol wipes, the little syringe-made-of-gold, and the bio-hazard box), we both totally forgot to wipe the injection site with the alcohol. Of course, we were scared after we realized that, because we're both crazy. Still, we were relieved that the shot was over. I sat back down on the sofa to work on my essay and try to keep my mind off of thinking that my body would reject the shot like it rejected the Taxotere.
As expected, the good ole chemo symptoms have already set in. I even took an hour long nap today (my second one I think!), although I would say it was far from restful because my heart still feels like it's beating out of my chest. At least I know the symptoms will subside. In fact, since my next treatment is December 27, I hope for an awesome symptom-free Christmas. Perfect timing!
This morning was also somewhat eventful because I got my boobs inflated to their final size. To heck with stopping at one inflation; a few weeks ago Brianne convinced me that I should inflate away. You're in your thirties, she said. When you hit your forties, you can make them smaller. I always listen to my best friend's advice so today, the magnet and the huge needle emerged and my boobs grew with saline. Dr. Chun also told me about the surgery that I will have sometime in March or April to switch out the tissue expanders with silicone implants. She'll go right through my mastectomy incisions and I'll need no more than a week to recover. Relatively speaking, it all sounds pretty simple. Since that surgery has nothing to do with the spread of my cancer, it doesn't scare me in the slightest.
The garage door just opened and in a minute, Brian and the kids will walk in from hockey practice -- Annabel cold and Teddy sweaty. When the kids go to bed, I'll proof read my essay and email it in. I'll post it sometime in February. In the meantime, it may be interesting for you to think about the day that changed your life. You may be surprised what you come up with. I know I was.