Friday, August 26, 2011

07/25/11 Surgery and Chemo #1

Today was rough. We all barely slept last night knowing that we would have to be in surgery by 7:30 am in Woodbury.
I wish Ambien would magically roll through the vents of my house at around 8 nightly so everyone would sleep well. ;)

My dad took me to have my port installed. Eric went to work and my brave mom offered to stay with my kids. Eric made it at work for about an hour before I received the call that he was coming to spend the day with me. Awww!
The port went off without a hitch, but was a little more painful than I had imagined afterwards.

The purpose of the port is to give doctors and nurses a central place to draw my blood and administer IVs and chemo treatments for as long as needed. There's a tiny tube going from my "button" in my chest to my heart. The extra tubing gives the doctor some extra time to catch infections before they would enter my bloodstream.

Here's what it looks like.

After a few hours with the port people, we had a quick lunch and headed over to meet with my Oncologist, Dr. Hartung.
Because of my heart ultrasound the prior day, my course of treatment was being changed. It seems that I have iffy blood flow from within my heart. It could have been numerous factors contributing to that, so I will have a different scan next Wednesday. If it's still low, I will need to be seen by a cardiologist at a later time. This is going to be the least of my concerns right now.

Chemo started soon after and lasted about 5 hours in all. We had a private room where I was able to watch movies about Chemo (fun!), old Seinfeld episodes and hear Eric and Dad talk shop while I had numerous bags pumped into my port.
It was an excruciating day, but I don't think I could have done it without my support team with me.
The ones that weren't physically with me were texting and emailing all day. It was wonderful!
Please know that if I don't text or email you back immediately, it's not because I'm not getting your message.
I'm really trying my best.

We returned home around 7 pm to happy kids, a clean house, dinner and my mom still smiling. What a day!
Another great surprise was my wonderful friend, Sharon, sitting at my table.
She, herself, had breast cancer a few years ago. She has helped me more than anyone with what doctors to see, what to expect, tips to manage side effects. She's such a calming person and I thank God for her daily. I'm using all of her same doctors and I agree with her, they are the best!
She brought a cube of fun treats to combat nausea. Animal crackers and chocolate covered ginger, anyone? Also, great books that I can't wait to dive into. Breast Cancer for Dummies immediately caught my eye. :) It was just such a wonderful gesture from someone who had already traveled this path. Thank you, Sharon!
Me starting my 1st chemo.
Wonder Nurse, Celia
Dad and Eric, still going strong after 12 hours!
I made it through my first chemo treatment!

Thanks to all of you for your continued love and support. YOUR strength and graciousness has been amazing to us.
Love you!


  1. You are simply amazing! Your attitude is wonderful and somehow you are funny through all of this. Oh, and don't forget beautiful! You look amazing, port and all!

  2. You continue to amaze me Angela :)

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  4. Thank you for keeping us updated on your journey! And really?! Sequins and lipstick while getting cheemo?! FABULOUS!! I will keep on'a prayin'!

  5. Your strength is amazing. You make me cry b/c I am so proud of you and your positive attitude!

  6. Thanks, friends. :) I ditched the heels seconds before leaving. That was probably a good idea. Why NOT look fab for chemo?

  7. You are so amazing. Continued thoughts and prayers.

  8. Every blog post has me in tears, not because I'm sad, but because your strength and attitude are amazing and courageous. There is nothing stronger than a positive outlook and I just know that it's going to pull you through this ordeal with flying colors. Keep smiling and know that I am thinking of you and everyone is behind you through it all!

  9. Keep rockin' it mama! You look better than me on special occasions! Prayers for you and yours.

  10. Thinking of you constantly!! You are amazing and admirable!! Love you so much!

  11. thank you much for letting us stand next to you during this journey. We may not be physically standing next to you, but I promise, I am standing by you for this entire thing. Even if I'm like almost a country away , hehe. BIg hugs, beautiful woman!!!!!

  12. I think looking fab for chemo is the way to go!! :)

    I am thinking of you every single day. It brought tears to my eyes to see your husband and dad with you through the day and to see that your mom took care of the house and kids.
    Hang in there and keep up the good fight. We all love you SO MUCH!

  13. You're doing awesome, lady! I'm so proud to know you!

  14. You are amazing, and I love your attitude! Why not look fab is right. I have been thinking about you.

  15. Your are such a strong person right now.

  16. You look FABULOUS!! I'm so proud of you :) xoxo

  17. You are simply amazing. You have such a wonderful outlook on life. You continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

  18. Bless your smile, mama! You are rocking this.

  19. You are doing keep it up girl!

  20. Hi Angela & anyone who may be going through this, I see you haven't written or been on this blog in a while. First off I want to say thank you! I am going through this same journey as you & reading your posts has helped me through some scary days. I have decided to start a blog as well to maybe help someone in the ways you have helped me & also to talk through my days as it seems to help me feel slightly better. I hope your life has continued be wonderful!