Wednesday, September 10, 2008

New friends in the waiting room at Emory

Happy Birthday, Mom! (September 10)

A lot has happened since I wrote last, but it's too late tonight to catch up. So here's a picture I took in the waiting room on September 9. Here's Joya, me and Heather, waiting to get our radiation treatments. How on earth did all of us wind up with cancer?!

Joya has breast cancer, and she had to go through chemo as well, but is doing great. Heather has a type of sarcoma too (it was a low-grade sarcoma that was on the front of her leg for at least six years!) Neither of us needs chemo, but Heather will need another surgery after radiation since her doctor did NOT expect her tumor to be malignant, and they need to go back in and scrape out her leg to make sure everything's gone. Again, I'm just so amazingly lucky that Dr. Oskouei (and apparently Dr. Maxa, since he referred me to Emory) suspected sarcoma from the beginning.

Although the drive downtown every day is tedious, it has been really interesting and encouraging getting to know other people who are going through this at the same time. Without exception, every other patient I've spoken with is extremely optimistic about their prognosis. We ALL feel very blessed.

Bye for now. I'll have to backtrack a few days to put some pictures on from Bubba & Aida's visit during their evacuation from Hurricane Gustav during Labor Day week, and then I'll post some more pictures of people who work at the Emory Winship Cancer Institute, including some pictures of me on the table preparing to get my treatment. (So be sure to look BACKWARDS in this blog to Labor Day week since I didn't actually get around to posting that stuff till 9/16/08.)

So far my only side effects are some swelling at (usually at night) which started on Saturday night, and what looks like a faint sunburn at times on part of my thigh. The skin around my incision is darkening, and I had them take off the "plus sign" sticker that's nearest my incision in the crease of my knee because it was bothering me and I was afraid it would eventually start to hurt. They painted my skin with silver nitrate which will last about 2 weeks. It has felt significantly BETTER today, and I can put the XClair cream on it, so I'm a happy camper today. SIX treatments down, 27 to go. This picture shows what my marks looked like on Sept. 9, 2008, BEFORE the silver nitrate change.

Tomorrow is 9/11. Hard to believe 7 years have passed since the terrorist attacks. The choir is singing at a special Mass, and then we'll practice for the weekend after that.

1 comment:

Heather said...

Hi Helen,
Thanks for posting this information and the picture! I have forwarded it on to my family and friends. I will see you tomorrow! Heather