Pinky Pie

Definitely a chemo newbie

Posted on: September 3, 2009

As soon as Dr. Gill told me Wednesday that the PET scan was clean, the loudest exhale ever to come out of my body could be heard across the Franciscan Skemp campus. My brother had said my mastectomy surgery was the biggest one day weight loss of my life. I think my exhalation yesterday might have bettered that.

“Then let’s get on with it,” I told my oncologist.

“Yes, we will kick the cancer in the tush,” she said. And I laughed.

I then pulled out the reading material that I had brought to the cancer center and said, as I showed it to her, laughing. “You can tell I’m a newbie here.”

She laughed even harder.

What I had brought was the latest edition of Food Network Magazine. Anyone who knows me realizes just how funny it is that I even subscribe. I am not known for my culinary skills. But I’ve become a Food Network junkie. An I even occasionally cook things. Yes, like food.

But no, I won’t be bringing a magazine about food to the cancer center for future chemo treatments. I put it back into my purse so as not to upset anyone who might catch a glimpse of it as I left. And even before I start chemo, I must say that magazine had something in it to make me sick – recipes for spinach. I have been psychologically scarred by spinach for life. But that is another story,

Dr. Gill also said they will figure out a way to get me to KC for Thanksgiving by either taking a treatment a little early or late. I told her it was important for my daughter and she said “It is important to you.”

Food Network Magazine

I also signed up for a clinical trial – just a comparison of MRI and echocardiogram in how they predict who might develop heart problems related to one of the drugs. The standard of care is echo but they want to know if the MRI might be more helpful.

I’m not concerned about those two scans as I walked 3.54 miles today. As I said to the doctor, they aren’t about “doom or not.” She smiled.

Also, I thought this morning about the clinical trial that Matt volunteered to be in as an 8 year old. After his bone marrow transplant, he developed graft versus host disease, which was the bone marrow saying, “What the hell am I doing in here?” They did a skin biopsy to identify the cause of his rash and then came back later to ask if they could do another skin biopsy. He agreed, saying it might help someone else. I stand with Matt on this.

Onward and upward folks.


2 Responses to "Definitely a chemo newbie"

wow, Pinky…what a huge huge huge relief…and good news…I’m gonna be happy all day just from this…

make sure they remember to give you whatever it is they give these days for nausea related to chemo…it was compazine when my mother started chemo in 1982, don’t know if they’ve got better or more choices…or, what the hell do I know, maybe they’ve improved chemo so much over the decades that it no longer causes nausea so bad you want to die?????? don’t get me started on that subject…


They have GREAT drugs today. And that is from women who have had them. I do appreciate it. 1982 was a shitty year for both of us. That’s when my son was diagnosed – in December, though.

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