Let The Fun Begin!!!

A dear friend of mine told me after reading my two blogs that I left out a lot of the awful experiences I had dealing with the VA… I was trying to give just the facts so that none of you got the impression that my blog was just a place for me to bitch and moan and think that I was looking for sympathy… I truly don’t think anyone reading this would ever think that but I had those thoughts so I left a lot out. From here on out I promise I will be totally upfront with all of you and give you the good with the bad… Thank you to all of you that have chosen to join me on this journey… 😍

Last Wednesday and Thursday I had my first two chemo treatments. Wednesday was a very long day because the drug I’m receiving is a very strong medication. They have to dispense it very slowly. On Thursday I thought I was only getting the one chemo drug (the faster one) but obviously my head wasn’t on straight and I was wrong. I did very well with both of them though. No adverse reactions to either… 

The Neulasta pump was placed on my arm after my treatment on Thursday. I didn’t ask a lot about it because I had read up on it so I felt I knew what I needed to know… Boy was I wrong!!!

When I got home Thursday I took a Claritin like I was supposed to. I held off on taking a Tramadol cause I just don’t like pain medications… 

On Friday at noon I did take a tramadol and a Claritin. I was trying to get ahead of the game by starting the pain medication in case I started having the excruciating bone pain that some people have told me they experienced. My plan was that if I took one pain pill at noon I’d be able to take another one at 6:00 right after the Neulasta pump did it’s thing.

The pump started beeping at 5:00 pm to warn me that the medication would soon be dispensed. I felt no physical changes while the medication was going through my body but unfortunately I did experience emotional changes… 

I let my crazy head fill with all kinds of thoughts… Things like, when will the bone pain start, when will I start getting nauseous, will I get a headache, will I start vomiting?

After my brain was filled with all of those thoughts, I couldn’t get them out of my head. Thank God my sister in law Terry happened to text me right when I started having chest pains… 

She took control and told me to call my oncologist and tell them what I’m experiencing and that I have two Xanax at home and ask if I could take one and get a script for more if I need them. 

Once again the real world shocked the heck out of me because it was only about 10 minutes before the oncologist on call returned my call… Unfortunately I declined the call because it was listed as an “UNKNOWN” number and we all know how many of those we get nowadays… Luckily it dawned on me that it was probably the doctor calling me so I called the answering service back and they put me through to the oncologist. He assured me that it is probably an anxiety attack and that I could take a Xanax every 8 hours. He couldn’t call in a script for it though because it’s a controlled substance.

This morning, Monday, I spoke to the nurse, that called me by the way. She asked if I was having any other problems. I have a sore throat and unfortunately my bones are starting to ache… My neighbor is taking me in the morning to see one of the oncologists and I will get a script then. 

Do any of you have a doctor in the real world that actually calls you back that quick and on top of that a nurse calls you instead of you having to call them? I’m not used to how it works in the real world. I’m used to calling the VA, no matter what office, and the phone rings off the hook… I leave a message and then have to call several times again before I either get to speak to a real person or I would get so mad that I’d drive all the way to Ann Arbor so I can stand in front of that persons desk… I am amazed at how it’s supposed to work… 

Terry came to my rescue at 10:00 pm Friday night. I’ve always thought of myself as a person that usually has things under control… Of course there have been times that no matter what I did, I didn’t have control… Friday night was one of those times when I had NO CONTROL!!! And I hate that feeling!!! Thank God Terry knows how to step in and take control. 

I knew I had to get that pump off my arm but one of the things my research didn’t mention is that the person wearing it CANNOT take it off by themselves!!! I couldn’t even reach the area where it was at… Of course at that point I thought ok Terry’s here and I can just have her take it off… WRONG!!! I don’t know what kind of adhesive they use on those pumps but it’s top of the line that’s for sure!!! Terry gently started trying to get it off and it wasn’t budging… Once she had the adhesive part away from my skin, it still wouldn’t budge. She couldn’t find any little buttons that you’d push to release it from my arm and believe me, it was stuck!!! Finally I told her to just start pulling. She pulled and pulled and it was like there was a 10 foot cord sewn into my arm holding that thing on. I felt so bad for Terry because at one point I started screaming “Just Pull!!!” She was pulling with everything she had and it still wasn’t moving!!! I think God finally stepped in and all of a sudden it came off… I have to remember to ask my doctor tomorrow if there’s a better way to get that darn thing off… The only other place it can be placed is my abdomen… I will at least be able to reach it there by myself but I still can’t imagine getting that thing off by myself… 

I haven’t taken anymore Tramadol’s or Xanax since Saturday because I missed my Dad’s 6:30 pm check-in call Saturday night and then again Sunday morning… I was so out of it that I didn’t hear the phone ring even though it was sitting right next to me. My family is now taking over with those calls so if I need to drug myself I can without worrying about my Dad. 

I was a little nauseated this morning and I ate a banana thinking that would help but it didn’t help much. My neighbor Joann, which is also my aide came over and made me some peanut butter toast and that did the trick… 

The peanut butter toast reminded me of a time when I was home on leave and I was at my Aunt Eileen and Uncle Carl’s house. Their daughter Kathy and I decided we were going to have some toast with peanut butter… I got my toast and I swear I put about an inch of peanut butter all over my toast… Kathy then got her toast and she put a dot on her knife and spread it onto her toast… I swear to you it wasn’t any bigger than a pin head… I couldn’t stop laughing… Do you remember that Kathy? 

Today, Monday, I’ve just been laying around being lazy… I’m just trying to wrap my head around all of these changes in my life. I think about my cousin that had breast cancer and all of the things she had to go through. I know when she was going through her chemo I tried to show her empathy and tried to be there for her but now that I find myself here, I have to admit I had absolutely no clue what she was really going through… Another cousin had Ovarian cancer and she went through hell!!! She beat cancers ass though!!! Both of these ladies are very strong women and I am so very proud of them!!! I pray that when I’m done with all this fun I’m having, that I can say I am as brave as they were… I have to be honest and say that at this moment I’m not too sure about that but I’m trying my hardest and I’m taking it one day at a time and I will kick cancers ass!!! 

Please continue to pray for me and all the other people in this world that are fighting cancer and other life threatening diseases… With God by my side I WILL BEAT THIS!!! 

Thank you to all of you that have been with me through everything so far and to those of you taking the time to read my blog. My wish is that after you read my blog, that some of you reach out to others that you know are going through something like this and offer them an ear or offer to go grocery shopping for them. Anything that will make that person feel like someone cares… I am so fortunate because I have that support but I know there are people out there that don’t… 

I Love you all,

Kindra Starr

2 thoughts on “Let The Fun Begin!!!”

  1. Kindra, Jan and I are fortunate enough to have a primary care doctor that gives his patients his cell phone number. When I had a hemorrhaging nose bleed on a Sunday morning he was there for me right away.
    As for you, you always have me no matter what. If you don’t have our new (since December) phone number PM me and I will make sure you have it. I think you have my cell phone number but I will make sure you have that too.
    You can always call me. Your oncologist is the same as my dad had for his leukemia. He really liked him. You are in good hands.
    I love you my friend.

  2. WOWZER.
    Like I said…NO ONE FIGHTS ALONE.
    I do peanut butter like you. My skinny sister does the dot.
    I am enjoying your blog and no way are you complaining.
    If you included all the details, well, it would be a novel, wouldn’t it?

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