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Surprise! July 3, 2014

Posted by Judy in Musings.
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I am not cancer free.

This should come as no surprise since there’s really no such thing as “cancer-free” when you have node positive breast cancer. There’s always a chance that some cell got away and then takes up residence elsewhere.

But that’s not the point of this post!

I am DONE with chemo!!

Now THAT’S an annoucement!

I went in to see the oncologist this morning, fully expecting to be receiving chemo #5. During the previous visit before chemo #4, he had said that at this point, we’d take it one chemo at a time to see if we’d continue, especially since there wasn’t any research indicating the difference between four and six chemo sessions. I was totally blindsided when he started out (after asking me how my voice was doing) by saying that the industry standard was four cycles and he wasn’t convinced that six was necessary.

Uh, what? I’ll spare you the deets. Mostly because we were so surprised that we don’t remember them, and partly because they just. don’t. matter! The upshot of the matter is that my labs looks great (blood cell counts are normal, all other functions are normal) and pushing further would definitely be more toxic for me, but the benefit might be negligible. I did make sure to ask him, “So in my particular case, being high risk because I’m young, you are comfortable stopping at four?” He said yes.

So we walked down the hall, scheduled a follow-up with him for two months from now, scheduled an appointment to have my heart checked out again, and scheduled an appointment to meet with the radiation oncologist.

DH and I decided that the oncologist just likes to surprise people. He caught us off-guard when I started chemo. (“Wanna start today?”) And now he caught us off-guard to end the chemo. (“Let’s just be finished. Is that okay with you?) I think it’s sort of funny, and keeps things interesting!

Some of you might be thinking, “That doc sure seems wishy washy! Does he know what he’s talking about?” Although it looks that way, he’s really very thorough and does his homework where research is concerned. When giving out advice, he always mentions different research studies and even talks about studies that are in progress or ones where the results are due in a few months. His seeming wishy washiness comes from the fact that in my case, there are no clear cut answers. If I had come in today saying that I had felt terrible after number 4 and my quality of life was really suffering, it would have been a no-brainer: stop chemo. Since my labs looked great and I felt pretty good, it was less clear-cut. I appreciated that he left the decision up to me. He presented me with the options and information and then allowed me to decide. Actually, if I change my mind, I can call him next week and say, “Actually, let’s go ahead and do two more.” and he’d support me in that, too. I don’t foresee that happening, though! =)

Sooo, next up, a mini vacation for me with my 7 year old and then after that, radiation. The end of the tunnel is near, I can see it! Hallelujah! Thank you, Jesus!


1. rlape85 - July 3, 2014

Wow! God is awesome and one more time He answers all our prayers. It is wonderful to hear that your blood cell are normal along with your other functions. We will continue praying that in the 2 month period for your check up everything will be well. We are very happy for you. ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ :* :* :* :* :* :*

2. Deborah - July 3, 2014

AMEN!!!! That’s wonderful news, so glad to hear it. May radiation go as well as it can, and do what it’s supposed to. Have fun on your mini-vacation! Continued prayers for your continued healing.

3. Mary - July 3, 2014

Congratulations young lady! I’m so glad about your reprieve from those awful chemo sessions and the following days! Enjoy every moment of your mini-vaca
and come back ready to roll through the radiation! Your spirit accepting God’s healing Spirit and going forward in faith has made you well. I so thank God for your blessings! Love You.

4. Faith Still - July 4, 2014

Yeah! God is Good! Many blessings for you and your son on vacation. Have fun.

5. r - July 4, 2014

Great news! More hugs and love to you and family as you negotiate the next step in your journey!

6. Jen - July 20, 2014

I know I’m a little behind-the-times here, but… “Thank you, Lord!” I am so happy for you, Perla, and so proud of the way you’re handling this journey. You are an amazing woman! I love that you’ve had this vacation time with your little buddy. What a great way to celebrate! Sending you an air high-five.

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