Hello there!  Been awhile hasn’t it? Yeah I have been a bit slack with the posting but things just get in the way. But hey here I am.

So on Monday I had my last cycle of chemotherapy. Here is me waiting for the train to take me there.

I still have to go through the side effects of this cycle unfortunately. I also have a follow up echo-cardiogram to see ensure that there has been no damage done to my heart and I am a bit worried about this.

After my first cycle of Docetaxel, I noticed that I was getting out of breath just walking up the stairs at home; two small flights. Hubbie even noticed this when I went up a slight hill. I also started to get neuropathy (nerve damage/pins+needles sort of things)  in my hands and on the bottom of my feet.

So when I went for my second cycle, I mentioned this to my nurse who then grabbed my Oncologist. They were a bit worried so they sent me off for a CT scan to ensure that there wasn’t a problem with a clot or infection in my lungs.  This came back normal thank god. My Oncologist believes that due to the amount of steroids (dexamethasone) I have to take, I am getting a build up of fluid and my heart is just struggling to push it around my body – lets bloody hope so.  These are the side effects of this medication.

My treatment was delayed until the next day and they reduced the strength by 25%.  This made a bit of difference to the neuropathy but not to the shortness of breath. I have noticed the neuropathy again already this treatment and no decrease in the breathing issue. They gave me the reduced strength again this time but not sure if it is too early to tell.

God I hope there isn’t any damage, but I will find out Thursday week.

Assuming there is no damage, I have surgery booked for the 26th of April.  This will be my lumpectomy.  I am not sure if I have to have another scan of the lump or any other scans prior to surgery.  Must remember to ask my surgeon if I need to do anything beforehand.

This is normally a day surgery, but they like to keep you in overnight to make sure everything is ok. And to charge you like a wounded bull.

So other than getting through my chemotherapy I have been up to a few things.  I am currently testing a sewing pattern for a small company and I have picked up my embroidery again along with my knitting.  Unfortunately the neuropathy makes it hard as I get bad pins and needles if I do either of these things for too long.  Even typing now, I can feel the tingles.

But really the days are just melting away. I have tried to do some exercising but with the shortness of breath, it has been hard. We do walk when we can during the week; usually go for an afternoon walk to the local coffee shop. (The worst thing is that I got bad oral thrush with the Docetaxel, so everything tastes bloody awful, but it hasn’t stopped me from eating).

I finished sewing up a bag that I started ages ago.

I am a little bit disappointed in that it isn’t as stiff as I would like it.  I followed the instructions to a T but it is quite floppy when it doesn’t have much in it.  I have a book that I have had for awhile by a Melbourne lady Nicole Mallalieu, who is a bag maker and her book takes you through all the different types of interfacings, etc so I will see what she has to say.

But I am off bag making for awhile.. I need to fill the wardrobe up.  Now that there is a change in weather, I need to rethink what I want to make.  Mmmm the choices.

I am off to Ballarat over Easter. My older sister and I are flying down to visit my other other sister who lives there.  We decided about 2 years ago that we will go away every Easter, just the three of us.  We went to Auckland last year and had a ball but with me being not well this year, we decided to stay with my sister.  If anything goes wrong, there are exceptional hospitals etc there and Hubbie feels better me being there.  Next year though!!!

There are a few sewing social events coming up which is something to look forward to. We are also off to see  “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” next month at the Sydney Theatre Company, which we are very much looking forward to. We saw Hugo Weaving in a play last year and he was so gooood; can’t wait.

Now that this part of treatment is over, I need to get a few things checkout. My eyes have gone bad, and my poor old feet.  Chemo has not been nice to either, so optometrist and a podiatrist appointments to be made.

Hopefully the hair will start to grow as well.

Speak soon

Stephanie xx

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