I want to name this post “Winning!”, but I think Charlie Sheen has ruined that particular phrase for all of us.
Posted by wendy on 2011/07/18
EDITED TO ADD: You can totally buy the print above at my Cafepress Store!
I actually hesitate to write this post while I’m still all giddy and high off endorphins, but hey, why not–it’s my blog, amiright? I had my very last radiation treatment this afternoon! I’m done! I’m done! *dances the dance of being done* I just so completely blown away that it’s over (and a bit incredulous, because–really? It’s over? How did that happen?). I feel all invincible today, you know? When I was walking out, the oncology nurse gave me a little pin that said “survivor” on it, and it made me cry a little. It feels a bit like a cheat…like I shouldn’t wear it until my five years are up and I get my official ‘pronouncement’ of suvivorship, but you know–I DID survive. I will survive. (Oh wow, I just went all Gloria Gaynor on your asses, didn’t I?) I’m in the next stage now. I have to take tamoxifen for the next 5 years, but hey-I take a multitude of vitamins every morning, so I’m not feeling terribly put out by that anymore. My onc wants to schedule a baseline PET scan for me next month, and then it’s just regular check-ups and keeping an eye on things. OH!! And, there is the removal of my Frenemy, The Port. This baby is coming OUT, people. Hallelujah.
So, there is a lot to talk about here and I’m just going to jump right in, as I cannot think of a witty segue-way from “YES!! I AM DONE WITH TREAMENT!!” to “Hey, this is what a radiation rash looks like.”
I had zero fatigue with radiation, which is a very good thing. And, I had no real effects from it until this past week when the rash sprang up. It’s not painful, really–but, it DOES itch like madness. I’m putting benadryl cream on it, and it helps a bit. My skin is also a bit tender and pink–like a slight sunburn at the radiation spot. It’s kind of funny to note that it is actually in a perfect little square section of my right breast. When I saw the Dr last week, she pronounced my red, rashy skin to be “exactly what we like to see at this stage”. She said it shows them that the radiation was actually doing its job and that I will continue to get pinker over the next week and a half, but then it will probably clear up just as quickly as it showed up. (and seriously–this rash? Popped up overnight–it was crazy.) So, there you have it, Dear Frantic Googler. That’s a radiation rash you see over to the side of this post. You can also see why they were at first concerned about my port getting in the way–and I really wish that I had pushed this issue–this is probably the most uncomfortable thing I have going right now–the skin over my PORT is itchy and sore and I have to put cream on it, which means I have to TOUCH MY PORT. So, I’m both uncomfortably itchy AND skeeved out. It just doesn’t feel fair at all.
Life is rarely fair, but it can be good. Oh yes. It can.