Saturday, April 10, 2010

Cancer Fighter Realities - Really Helping

More on how to help from a friend who went through cancer fighting...

How do cancer fighters feel about visits? It really depends on the chemicals they are using. What kind of cancer? For me I had 6 rounds 21 days apart. (Karen will have 4 rounds 21 days apart). The hair falls out on day 17....I had mine shaved ahead of time.

I would have treatment on Tuesday (Karen's will be Wednesdays), by Thursday I started to feel bad. Friday was the worst day then by Saturday I would feel better. Mine caused a great deal of bone pain...kind of like the flu...just achy all over.

Over time your white blood cell count or your 'numbers' goes down so the more treatments the more tired and run down you feel and the longer it takes to bounce back. I worked as a school teacher during my treatments except for the week of treatment.

As far as visitors go, I didn't mind fact the day before treatment I LOVED having a small group come and worship and pray over me. It brought great peace and allowed them to feel a vital part of my treatment...which they were.

The only days I really didn't like company were the bad days when my bones hurt so badly. Later in treatment I also had a hard time because I could barely walk across a room without being out of breath. It is hard to have a conversation at that point, but I had a transfusion and was much better.

My symptoms were manageable for the most part. I had stomach issues the same time as my bone pain...I never threw up but I had other issues. So having certain things to eat or drink was helpful.
Smoothies were the only thing that tasted good for the first few days. So taking some fruit or yogurt from time to time might be helpful.

One thing that Bill [her husband] did for me that helped a ton, was take me for rides through the mountains on my bad days. His theory was we know its not the flu and laying in bed just makes it we would get in the car and ride. I'm not sure I would have wanted to do that with anybody else, but it was wonderful for the two of down and fresh air.

One thing to consider is that her immune system will be low and too many people also brings many germs. I had two infections that prevented me from having chemo so it delayed my treatment. The longer she goes the weaker she will be. With chemo many times it is the complications that cause the difficulty...not always the cancer itself.

For me was my blood counts were too low and I had several infections which can be very dangerous. It is like a domino effect and one body system affects all the others.

I am glad Karen has a good support system. It really helps more than you would know to have many in your corner pulling for you.
Praying for courage is a critical at the beginning, at least until she gets to her new normal.
So Crosspoint, let's keep praying, serving and loving.

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