Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Radiation - week three

I have reached the half way point of radiation - only 15 more treatments to go. It is incredibly tiring going to the hospital every day, but they are getting faster at positioning and radiating me. Yesterday was the fastest time - 37 minutes. The waiting room is full of patients all who are at different stages of their treatment and some who are incredibly ill. It makes me very sad to see these patients, but I am also grateful that my treatment is going well and things are on track for a full recovery.

I am currently sporting a very distinctive radiation tan, but only on the upper left quadrant of my body. It looks as though I have a desk job which is next to a window and only get sun on one side of my body. It isn't so bad when you look at the tanned section by itself (it looks like an over cooked bread roll with a nipple on the top), but it looks strange when you compare it to the other slightly more pasty side. When you compare the two, it looks like a Benetton ad, they are very different. According to Antiques Roadshow my street value has plummeted, because as soon as you damage one of a matching pair the value drops. I am fortunate that I haven't broken out in a rash, blisters or had any skin breakages. So far, so good. Overall, I am feeling pretty good. I can feel my energy returning and it is nice not having to deal with the side effects of chemo anymore. I saw an old friend the other day, who I haven't seen for a while. I said hello and when he asked me how I was, I said 'yeah, I am fine, really well'. He looked at me with a rather quizzical look and asked me if I had been sick. I am not sure whether I think that everyone knows about my diagnosis, or if I was feeling so well, I temporarily forgot that I was sick.

I had my make-up done this morning for a photoshoot. It was strange to have that much make-up put on me, it has been a very long time. The photoshoot is for the cover of a local publication, but I am not going to go into any more details just yet. The photographer was great and made me feel very comfortable. So comfortable that when he suggested I take off my scarf for some photos - I did! I haven't had any photos taken of me with my bald head. In fact, I can't remember the last time I had a photo taken. I felt confident that with the excellent make-up job, that I didn't look like Uncle Fester, so that is good. Of the 3478934789 photos that were taken, I hope they don't pick a baldy one for the cover......

I had my second solo Herceptin infusion on Monday and am feeling like an old man (stiff joints) and am currently battling off a cold. Apparently it is a side effect of Herceptin, but I suspect it may have something to do with hanging out with my nieces and nephew on the weekend. The kids are divine, but are also petri dishes of germs. It was great to spend time with them, as I haven't seen them as much as I usually do. George picked me a long stem red rose (it was taller than him and included the roots), it was beautiful, but was from a public park where you are forbidden to smell, touch or steal the roses. I put it in the car quickly to avoid damage and George being arrested.

In other news, my eyelashes are slowly returning, but the eyebrows continue to be awol. It's like the eyebrows started growing enough for me to see them and become excited, but have gone on strike and are not doing anything else. The hair on my head also continues to grow. I am waiting for it to be long enough to colour back to my usual colour. I am not keen to revel my Lee Ling Chin hairstyle to anyone! Which makes it far more curious as to why I had it photographed today for a publication cover!!!!!!!!!!!! Perhaps it was a poor decision, but I am blaming chemo brain.


  1. Actually Karen I don't think it was a poor decision, I think it was a brave decision and one that you will hopefully come to appreciate down the track. I think the fact that you have a photo as a "baldy" is something that you will be able to look back on as a mark of where you have come from, as you continue to get more betterer. (deliberate mispelling so that I don't sound sooky or preachy)

  2. Sorry Karen silly computer has picked up Grant's google account. That was from Jimmy's mum Ruth (not so often) at the dog park