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Cancer: Nothing about this is normal.

Cancer: Managing Symptoms | Last Active: Feb 13, 2022 | Replies (26)

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When I was going through chemo, I “enjoyed” it as it was four hours every other week where I was taken care of and there was no interruption from the outside world. I rocked out to heavy metal on my Prime account which kept my mind off the deadly chemicals pumping into my body. Nurses reminded repeatedly it is cumulative so the cold sensitivity in my hands and feet would get progressively worse. That went away about a month after chemo ended as did the tightness in my throat. That tightness and cold sensitivity forced me to drink regular Coke warm and believe it or not, I still do.
The chemo set I was on included a substantial amount of steroids, so I was ravenously hungry and gained most of the 23 pounds back that I lost from the Whipple surgery. I was already losing some of my hair, so the possibility of losing what was left didn’t bother me, although I did joke with everyone who brought it up I was going to get a Farrah Faucet wig.
Just remember this about cancer and chemo: you have to find something to laugh about, because if you don’t, you’ll cry!

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Replies to "When I was going through chemo, I “enjoyed” it as it was four hours every other..."

You are so right. Find something positive like how caring the nursing team in chemo is; the fact thaat you have meds you can try to help manage your disease; the fact that your friends and family support you and are on the trip with you. Laugh for sure. Cry if you need to but go back yo smiles and enjoying life.

I know I did some crying during chemo and wanted to quit at session 5 of 12. But with the strong urging of my wife, I went through the whole thing. I tried to get control of my mind, something I had not been doing. I quit sitting in a certain chemo chair, as it seemed that I always got nauseous in that chair - that was a mind game that I finally got over. The nurses gave me a big pep talk when I wanted to quit, not an ass chewing, but a pep talk. Some things got better, and some (not sleeping) got worse. but I got thru it, and things got rapidly better. I had dropped 55 pounds when I was sick, then surgery, and chemo. But at the end of chemo I had a good appetite and could eat like horse, and still do.
I also began to feel better mentally, and have gained back 31 pounds. I pushed as hard as I could physically both during chemo and after. I came to realize I am in a lot better boat than many I had seen at Mayo, and in the infusion room. I had three friend who were in the infusion room at the same time. I say "had", as they have all passed on - which is another point to ponder. I am 3 years out from Whipple, so God has more plans for me, and what ever they are, I will gladly face them.
Not everyone has the same results after Whipple and chemo, so there is no one story fits all. What advice I will offer is to not keep everything to yourself. You are not alone! Talk to your nurses, spouse, friends, even enemies if you are really in a crappy mood! 🙂
Before chemo, all I had heard about it was the nausea and other not nice side effects. Yes, I did run into that, but when people ask me about it, I tell them the main culprits that are not mentioned is how it beats you up mentally and emotionally. I am presently have a recurrence from another type of cancer than the pancreatic. This timer I am emotionally, mentally and spiritually ready for what ever comes - be it chemo or some thing else. And I will find something to laugh about.
Blessings to everyone.