Friday, March 4, 2011

Another Day, Another Battle

Today Alexis spent a good portion of her day fighting nausea, a metallic taste in her mouth, loss of appetite, & fatigue. When she arrived at Huntsman this afternoon to visit Dr. Glenn the doctor was worried about her vital signs, particularly her low blood pressure. They changed a few medications and added a couple new ones. After about an hour they released her to go home, and she reported feeling better then she had all day. Hopefully this will improve the rest of her weekend and week as well. It is a good start!

Approximately 24 hours after each chemotherapy treatment Alexis will receive an injection of Neulasta. She needs this medication because chemotherapy's job is to kill all the fast producing cells (like cancer cells, hair cells, white blood cells, etc.). So this Neulasta is given to help produce new, healthy white blood cells, which will consequently help reduce Alexis' risk of infection. The side effect they talked to Alexis about is a feeling of soreness in her bones, because it is in the bone marrow that white blood cells are produced. She can expect this soreness to start tonight and into tomorrow, according to the medical staff.

Alexis continues to be strong through every symptom, every hour. We talked a little about fatigue today. It made me think about how we have all experienced times in our lives when we are completely exhausted. When we are "running fumes." It is a physical battle to keep moving, keep functioning. With cancer, Alexis not only is exhausted from not being able to sleep, but her body is working all the time to get rid of this intruder. It not only tries on her physical energy, but her mental energy as well. I imagine it is level of fatigue you have to experience to fully understand how extensive it is. Fatigue wears on our ability to function, to think, to be patient, to feel, to know what to say, do, or feel. It is an all encompassing challenge. Alexis continues to handle all that this cancer brings her way, including her fatigue. I (like many of you) am amazed at how she pushes through each and every little battle in this war. That smile we all love persists!

1 comment:

Mildred Watts said...

Dear Michelle and family,

When I heard about Alexis, I thought of my wonderful friend, Janet. I remember a song at her funeral. I think it was sung by the grandchildred -- I imagine Alexis was there.

Some of the words...

"I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me
In our darkest hour
To teach us how to live
To teach us how to give
To teach us with the light of love"

I remember someone saying, "Your Grandma will be one of those angels."

I have cheered for Alexis from a far, and I am cheering for her once again. She is a fighter. I just feel badly about all she has to go through to beat this cancer.

My Nancy went through chemo about 11 years ago. I remember the red one. It seemed the toughest to handle emotionally.

Go, fight, win!!

Mildred Watts