As Promised — NEW Treatment Update

I promised last night to write about how it came to be that I am finished with chemo!  I can’t believe it…I am finished with chemo!!!  It still seems a little bit surreal.

Before I get started, here’s a picture because this is gonna be long!

My little goofball!

This past Friday morning Brandon and I headed to Durham for our 7:15am appointment.  I’d had an awful night on Thursday, with lots of pain that seemed to appear out of nowhere.

We checked in as usual, and it was way less crowded than it had been at my previous appointment (on which day, the schedulers told us that my clinic was scheduled for 180 appointments …180!!!!  The waiting room was literally overflowing out into the hallways…).

Anyway, as we sat in the waiting room I posted a quick update on FB and was so overwhelmed by the immediate outpouring of support and encouragement for my treatment.

My friend Ruth wrote, “…I hope it goes better than we all dare hope…”  — I was thinking the same thing, because I didn’t know how much more my body could handle.

Things moved along pretty quickly and I still thought it was just business as usual…weight (gained.  boo), blood pressure (kinda high.  boo), access the port (oww.  boo), had to see a new nurse (we missed our favorite oncology nurse. boo).

Why do I feel discouraged, why do the shadows come…?

As we talked with my oncology team that morning, we discussed my ongoing side effects…namely the neuropathy and muscle weakness.  We discussed the heavy dose of steroids and other medicines I was requiring just to maintain comfort after a treatment, and we discussed the fact that because of those side effects, I couldn’t walk without my knees buckling and I still had significant numbness in my hands and feet.

When Jesus is my portion, a constant friend is He…

Then they suggested it…suggested that maybe I didn’t need any more chemo!  They hadn’t been able to feel the tumor for weeks now and said I had already had such a favorable response to the 6 chemo treatments that I didn’t need to have my last 2 treatments!

His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me!

I had not expected to hear such good news.  I was a little scared.  I had prepared myself for 8 treatments.  I had it in my head that 8 treatments would be required to “kill the cancer” – ultimately though, the oncology team convinced me (in about 2 seconds 😉 ) that I really had had enough, and that surgery and radiation would take care of anything else.

They also warned that continued chemo may cause irreversible side effects and they really did not want to subject me to additional chemo that they didn’t feel was absolutely necessary.

Isn’t God merciful?!

I know He would have seen me through, but I can not imagine being any weaker than what I was.  As it is, I’m 17 days post-treatment and still hobbling around like I’m 90 years old!!  I trust that none of my current side effects are irreversible…just trying to be patient as I get stronger.  Would you pray for complete healing (both from the cancer and side effects) from the chemo I have already received?

**********************

So what’s next? (One of Cadence’s favorite things to say!)

I know this picture is out of focus, but I love her sweet profile!

As if God had a hand in all of this or something, the surgeon was in the clinic and available to meet with Brandon and I about 10 minutes after the decision was made not to proceed with chemo!  He confirmed our decision to stop the treatments and confirmed that he also could not feel the tumor.  He also assured us that in his experience, genetic cancers did generally respond really well to chemo, and he felt like I had already had a full response.  That was reassuring.

Then we had to talk about surgery.  Not my favorite topic.

At any rate…all my worries about the timing and what not…I don’t know why I bothered worrying…He knows just what I need.

The surgery is scheduled for December 1 – after Thanksgiving, but long enough before Christmas that I can hopefully be “recovered” on some levels, and enjoy time with my family.

I will have one more appointment before my surgery, but I will not have to have any more MRIs or body scans right now.  Basically the surgeon said they will be analyzing my breast tissue and lymph nodes  very closely after the surgery in pathology and if they see any indication that there is more cancer, they we would discuss additional chemo at that time.  But he feels like that is highly unlikely.

***********************

I think that about catches everybody up on what’s going on with my treatments.

As for how I’m feeling – better.every.day!  I think I had a false-sense of well-being from the steroids on Friday afternoon into Saturday…I paid dearly for it on Sunday, but I think I am coming around.  As I said, I am trusting that I will feel completely better at some point…it is just the when that I’m not sure about!

For now I’m just gonna try to get some beauty sleep and let these muscles rest!

Goodnight 🙂

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About Candace

Stay at home mom of three small kids (3, 2, and almost 1) -- about to embark on the biggest journey of my life.
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26 Responses to As Promised — NEW Treatment Update

  1. Kristi Wilson says:

    OMG Candace, such wonderful news…. for no more treatments. I think about you daily and worry about you too (((wink))))!!!
    Hope that you get stronger and the side effects subside with each passing day. You are one of the strongest people I know!!!

  2. Cammi Lewis says:

    What awesome news Candace! Your family continues to be in our prayers.

  3. I am SO excited for you to be done with chemo!!! Yippee!!!

  4. Sunny Downes says:

    What wonderful update – to hear you are done with Chemo makes me smile ear to ear.

  5. Joni Thompson says:

    Praise God! I’m so thankful for your good news! Love the beautiful photos of your sweet kids.

  6. Amy Smith says:

    Awesome!!! God is good! God never gives us more than we can handle!!!

  7. That is so great Candace!! I know this has been so hard for you and your family but God is seeing you through. Congrats on being done with chemo and many prayers for you as you continue this journey!

  8. Colleen says:

    best post ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    and the pics you chose to show us are awesome!!!!!!! your kids are just so precious!!!!!!!
    <3, <3, and more <3, ((((((((HUGS))))))))), xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  9. petra cole says:

    Praise the Lord! He is our portion and our strength! Our ever present help! What wonderful news! What a huge sigh of relief I breathed with you while reading! I will pray for your continued full recovery and healing from side effects. Love you Candace!! Xoxoxoxo

  10. Allie says:

    Im so beyond thrilled that your chemo is done. I hope you feel back to your ol’ self soon (((hugs))) YOU DID IT!!

  11. Jan Hill says:

    Great news Candace! We are praying for you daily!

  12. Ruth says:

    I wish I could be there in person to help celebrate a huge CHEMO IS DONE FOREVER party!!!

    LOVE the pics! 🙂

    I’ll be praying for your surgery and for your continued healing from the treatments.

  13. Lavon & Ralph Motsinger says:

    Our hearts are full as we read your reports! We prayed this morning for HIS BEST for you and yours. We are singing Great Is His Faithfulness as we pray for your COMPLETE healing.
    Happy 6th Wedding Anniversary! You and Brandon are jewels in His Kingdom.
    Aunt Lavon & Uncle Eugene (Ralph!)

  14. Karina says:

    Amazing news! You DID it!!! I will keep you in my thoughts as you get stronger every day and prepare for surgery. Your children are gorgeous!

  15. Kim Moore says:

    Candace…I am so happy for you !!! I know you must have been relieved and scared at the same time when you heard “no more chemo”. But if the doctors are encouraging no more chemo…I’d listen to them too. Praying for you still. I know your battle is not over:( But you ARE going to WIN!!! Love YOU!!!
    Kim

  16. Susan Wilder says:

    You are in our prayers every day. He’s got you covered. Don’t worry. Love the pictures of the children. They are delightful. We have so much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. (Hopefully, you will be up to eating lots of Turkey. 🙂 )

  17. Tommie Angel says:

    yay yay yay for you!!! continuing to pray for you and your beautiful family! You are such a blessing and inspiration! Praying you continue to feel God’s presence every moment!
    Tommie Angel

  18. Todd Tessman says:

    So happy for you!:) What an awesome God we serve, who forgives all our sin AND heals all our diseases!!! It will slowly get better, but better it WILL get!!! I thank God for your witness and for answered prayers…….again! Praise His Name in ALL things we will Praise his name!!

    We Love you!!

  19. Jenni says:

    “The Lord has done great things for us and we are filled with joy.” – Psalm 126:3. I’m overjoyed for you!! God’s timing is perfect (sometimes we are the ones that have to synchronize our watches 🙂 ). Please let us know what we can do for y’all in the coming weeks. Much love!!

  20. Oh Candace. That is such wonderful news. I hope you can rest a little easier knowing that the chemo part is done. I will continue to pray for you on your journey. You are a remarkable brave woman.

  21. Marcie says:

    That is just the best news!! I’m so happy chemo is behind you. I will be praying for healing for your body as you prepare for surgery and then healing post-op!!

  22. Lisa McElroy says:

    Wonderful news Candace!!!! I am so glad for you. Love the pics. We will continue to keep you and your family in our prayers.

  23. God is faithful as He hears our prayers for your complete recovery and release from side effects. He is able to fulfill the healing that He has begun, and I will praise Him daily for you, honey. I ask God to give my Brandon the courage and strength he needs to help you and your absolutely lovely family. Good night, Candace. I am praying now for a restful and healing sleep for you. Love you so much. Charlotte

  24. Jennifer Phillips says:

    Wonderful news Candace!! Continued prayers for your recovery and healing. God has his hands all over you and your family! “He will not let your foot slip – He who watches over you will not slumber.” Psalm 121:3

  25. Jennifer says:

    I’m so happy Candace!!!! I know you will get stronger day by day. You are constantly in my thoughts!!! I love you and hope you’ll be back to your old self very soon!!!

  26. Emily C says:

    You did it!!!! I am so very happy you can put those treatments behind you now. I will keep you in my thoughts in these next few weeks as you prepare (mentally and physically) for your surgery. ((((Hugs))))

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