Getting ready for radiation therapy
While having a PICC line implanted in my arm, I thought I wouldn’t be able to do much, but surprisingly I was able to adjust quite well. I am glad that I was able to get out to be with family more frequently, and also have visitors over. We had a great time with our nephew Erik, his girlfriend, and his little daughter Emma. It was a lot of fun to have her to ourselves. Sometimes at family functions, there are so many people around, and we don’t get to have the one-on-one time that I love to have with the little children in our lives. It is always nice to see each of their individual personalities, along with little traits of their parents. We spent a lot of time with Emma’s dad when he was her age, and I see some of the cute little things in her that he used to do. Times like this spent with family are, to me, truly the best part of my life.
Another book that was just for fun reading was The Big, Not-So-Small, Curvy Girls Dating Agency, by Ava Catori. This one was silly and really made me laugh out loud a couple of times.
This past couple of weeks, it’s been fun to watch all of the birds migrating from the south back up north. I made sure to get our hummingbird feeder set up the last week in April, and already we have had at least two different hummingbirds (male & female), and maybe three at our feeder.
I also have been putting out oranges for the Baltimore Orioles. The only birds eating them at first were the House Finch couple making their nest in the bush outside our dining room window. That all changed last week when I came home from my walk to find a male oriole feeding at the oranges. It is so much fun having all the different birds visit our yard at this time of year.
I am finished with my visits to my plastic surgeon for saline fills in my expanders. I am at the desired level, and won’t go back to my plastic surgeon until two months after radiation, so he can see how my skin is affected.
This past Thursday, I had my followup with the infectious disease doctor to see how my infection is healing, and if the antibiotics are working. My visiting nurse and the nurse in the infectious disease office both told me maybe I would be getting my PICC line pulled. That was news that I loved hearing. I just made sure not to get my hopes up.
When we got escorted into the exam room by two medical assistants, both of them said, “Looks like someone is having their PICC line pulled today!” Mark and I just looked at each other and I was so happy. The doctor came in and said yes, it looks like the drugs worked well and I had my choice: Did I want it removed today, or should my home nurse come by on Friday to remove it? I said, “Today, please.”
On Friday, we finally had my appointment with my radiologist to get me mapped for radiation. It was nice to be able to move to this point after it being put off for a while due to my second surgery.
The mapping procedure consists of getting my arms in the correct position over my head and fitting me into a type of beanbag mold. Then they mark my body with ink and tattoo various parts with little dots. The tattoo part wasn’t too bad until she had to do one right in the middle of my chest on the breastbone. I thought I was going to jump out of my skin! I don’t know if I could handle getting a tattoo on purpose.
The other difficult part was after having my arms over my head for 30 to 40 minutes. It was really hard to get them back down. I couldn’t do it. The two technicians had to help me with each arm. The good thing is, when I go back to actually have my sessions, I will only have to have my arms overhead for maybe 15 minutes at the most. I will begin my treatments right after Memorial Day and go for six weeks until just after the Fourth of July.
Thanks, everyone, for continuing to follow along with us.
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