While I finished “active” cancer treatment back in April when I finished chemo, as of today I’m FINALLY done with IV infusions! I continued to get Herceptin every 3 weeks to help prevent recurrence, a drug that specifically targets the HER2 mutation I had. As Clark Griswold would say, “Hallelujah holy shit, where’s the tylenol?”. Just a little recap of what’s gone down since I got diagnosed:
1 billion – what feels like the number of appointments, heart tests, blood tests, MRIs, ultrasounds, biopsies, and mammograms I’ve had
526 – days since diagnosis
$20,417 – dollars raised for Dana Farber through the Jimmy Fund Walk and Touch Your Boobs gear (a big friggin’ THANK YOU to all of you for that)
31 – IV infusion treatments
6 – cancer killing drugs that have been introduced to my system
4 – surgeries and procedures
2 – new boobs that aren’t murderous assholes
1 – grateful breast cancer survivor
The good news about just getting Herceptin without the traditional chemo from April until now is that it’s much lower on side effects. My hair is growing in fast and furious, my appetite is back in full effect and I’ve felt normal for the most part. Though I guess normal is a relative term. Did I really feel normal? Or did I just not feel like the rotting ball of garbage I was before? It’s hard to tell.
I will continue on hormone therapy for at least 5 years to make sure my body doesn’t produce estrogen since my cancer responded to it (what they call hormone receptor positive). This is another measure to help prevent recurrence. So I’m on a daily pill and a monthly injection in the butt cheek to keep me in a medically induced, temporary state of menopause. Like Herceptin, the side effects are pretty low but I do get all the fun things you would naturally get with menopause including hot flashes and night sweats. If you see me randomly fanning myself and breathing like I’m in a sauna, you’ll now know why.
So farewell 2018. You weren’t as bad as 2017 but you still sucked a little. Bring it on 2019 – I hope you’re the year that I remember as being full of fresh starts and new beginnings. I think those are the same thing but whatever I couldn’t think of anything else. Happy new year to you all! Sending lots of love and gratitude to you all for getting me through a very bumpy year and a half.