The End of Chapter 1

6 Jan

But it’s not ending peacefully.  :)  I’ve been feeling pretty yucky since I woke up Thursday morning and the 2nd dose of Treanda just added to the feeling.  The nausea is already pretty strong, but one of the nurses mentioned the compound effect of six rounds of chemo and how each time can make you feel a little worse.  Thank the Lord that today was my last time taking Treanda.  I don’t think maintenance with Rituxan will make me feel quite this bad.  Mostly tired, but not as sick as the Treanda does.

So right now I’m taking my nausea meds which is enough to keep the real sickness at bay and allow me to hover over that grey area of “Am I going to be sick? … No, I don’t think so, not this time.”  This repeats itself every 15 minutes or so until I fall asleep.  :)

For now, I’m going to rest for the next few days and enjoy the reality that I have a nice little break between now and when Chapter 2 starts on March 2 for maintenance.  Well, except for the doctor’s visit on Feb. 8 and the CT scan on Feb. 28 and labs every Wednesday, but hey – all of that is better than chemo, right??

Right now, I am so thankful that my body has responded the way it has to treatment AND that the treatment side effects (as awful as they make me feel sometimes) have not been worse.  As my Dad said, “we have been blessed that this has not been worse for you.” Yes, Dad, we certainly have.  I see the other patients in the treatment room.  I know I am one of the lucky ones.  There may not be a cure right now for indolent follicular lymphoma, but some of the other patients are already in such advanced stages of their cancers, that not only is there no cure – there is very little time or hope of finding one for them.  With smiles on their faces, and warm handshakes and hugs, they are simply trying to add to their days.  They are the ones who are courageously facing the toughest of situations.

That’s not to say there aren’t tears, because there are.  Lots of them sometimes.  I wish this were not only the end of Chapter 1 but also the end of this book on cancer for me.  But it’s not.  I don’t have control of that.  All I can do is accept that and live each day to the best of my ability, thanking God for each sunrise, sunset, and everything in between.

And who knows?  Maybe by the time I complete maintenance, there will be a fantastic new CURE for indolent follicular lymphoma that will take care of this cancer once and for all.

As my sister, Kathy, reminded me today, “God’s plan is greater than anything this world has to offer.  You are a fantastic part of His big picture!!  Never forget that.”  Such honest truth from someone I love so much who is also reminding herself of this daily,too.  I will continue to trust that God has a plan for my life and ALL of this is part of it.  Because that’s where my hope lies on the tough, as well as the good, days.

The unfailing love of the LORD never ends!
By his mercies we have been kept from complete destruction.
Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each day.
I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”
Lamentations 3:22-24  

♥ Rachel

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8 Responses to “The End of Chapter 1”

  1. Robin January 6, 2012 at 7:53 am #

    I’m so glad that you’re done chemo!!! We all know the journey doesn’t end with treatment, but it’s still good to have this part out of the way. God has certainly blessed you with strength and grace.

    • rachturner January 6, 2012 at 12:56 pm #

      Hey Robin! It is exciting to have this part (almost) behind me! Every day will get better from here, as you know. Hope you are feeling great these days!

  2. The Savvy Sister January 6, 2012 at 7:54 am #

    Time is a great healer…soon you won’t be able to remember how sick you felt. You’ll look back on these posts and say…”I must have been strong to get through that” I’m sure your faith helps!

    • rachturner January 6, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

      There is so much truth to that – I will look back on these days and barely be able to remember how I felt. I’m looking forward to that! :)

  3. IamSimplyTia January 6, 2012 at 9:52 am #

    I want to say I love you even though I don’t even know you. But hey, I do love you as my fellow human being. You are soooo brave and strong and I really admire that about you. I am so happy that I chose to follow you throughout this journey because every time I log on and read your words, no matter what’s going on with me, I always take the time after reading your posts to thank God for his blessings in my life. You are a soldier and a survivor Rachel and you will beat this cancer!

    Feel better.

    • rachturner January 6, 2012 at 12:58 pm #

      Tia! You are a sweetheart!! Thank you for your encouragement. I’m not brave or strong, just doing what I have to do to get through this. You would do the very same thing. Thank you for coming along on this journey with me!

  4. Kathy January 6, 2012 at 8:33 pm #

    Your Chapter 1 finale calls for a real CELEBRATION and I know you’re not quite up to it yourself, so this is where Big Sis comes in handy. I’m going to shoot off a firecracker over the pond and see if I can capture it in a nighttime picture for you! I may have to wait ’til it rains Sunday so I don’t set the woods on fire. Of course, the firecracker won’t be anything like the size of professional ones but it will be more meaningful than any firecracker we’ve ever seen before. Matt should have a spare firecracker under the passenger seat in his truck (just kidding)!! Although, back in July he did put a lit firecracker under the bathroom door in an attempt to hurry Chris along. Good thing Chris was already on the throne, huh! Chris played deaf for 2 days, it was hilarious!

    Hope this gives you a bit of a chuckle. Laughter heals. I’ll send pics when I get it done.

    • rachturner January 9, 2012 at 6:51 pm #

      HUGE chuckle, just please don’t set the woods on fire. :)

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