What’s next?

I don’t want to report every time I sneeze, but some people are keeping up with the details of my cancer treatment carefully and want to know all the latest info. If that’s not you, I totally understand. But here’s the latest scoop anyway:

  • The hole in my skin where the drain once was has finally healed. It still hurts though.
  • I still have post-op pain. I have enough pain medicine to keep me happy (and let’s face it, it does make me happy) for several more weeks.
  • My six weeks of radiation is scheduled to begin on May 20 and end on July 1. I don’t have a place to stay in Houston for these six weeks yet.
  • I have to go to Houston this week for several things. I’ll get some Herceptin medicine intravenously, see my surgeon again, have a radiation simulation (where they map out what parts of my body will be radiated), and see a dental oncologist to protect my teeth during radiation. Apparently radiation has to be done very carefully or your teeth, lungs, hearing, eyesight, etc. can be damaged. The radiation doctor said I would lose the use of one of my four salivary glands … it is unavoidable. I’ll also have burned skin and be uncomfortable.
  • I will drive myself to Houston this week and the following week.
  • If I need physical therapy, I will get it in Houston at MD Anderson. Full range of motion have not returned to my neck or right arm, but don’t worry, I can still drive.
  • After surgery, the surgeons told me that none of my nerves had been damaged. But two weeks later when I asked about the numbness in my right ear, neck, jaw, and scalp, they backed up and said that no “major” nerves had been damaged. They said it will be a long time before I get the feeling back and I might not get it all back. This was depressing news. I can’t imagine what I’d be facing if they’d cut some major nerves. Do you know how it feels when your foot goes to sleep and you bump it against something and it hurts like crazy? That’s how it feels. My numb ear is the most annoying thing.

It’s a rough time, but day by day things are getting better.


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