Planning Radiation & Neuropathy

January 27th, 2021

I have gotten so many inquiries as to my health that I know it’s been too long since my last update. My last post was right after my surgery, which honestly was harder than I had expected to heal from. Having a drain in my armpit was incredibly painful for 10 days during which time I was fairly restricted from moving it. I was happy with my decision to take 2 full weeks off but in retrospect that was not quite enough time. I found out that just because I think I am superwoman, I actually am just human. Luckily for me I have the best staff in the world who made everything as easy for me as possible. I love you all so much Ellen Jung, Paula Babich, Jenn Spear, Karen Jefferson.
Tomorrow I go for CT mapping to plan my radiation treatment which hopefully will start in 2 weeks. I have 5 weeks of what sounds like relatively easy treatments followed by one week of more intensive radiation to the initial area of cancer. I am told I should tolerate this fairly well with minor symptoms like a sunburn to the area plus fatigue which won’t be anything new. Thankfully I allow myself plenty of time to sleep so that should be a piece of cake.
I have tried so hard to keep a smiling face and be positive and not complain too much (I think haha). But about 3 weeks ago I noticed my feet were really bothering me. I chalked it off at first at doing too much and being on my feet all day, but it continued to get worse. I went to the oncologist and shared my concerns. It had to be either I was just too out of shape and had gained too much weight, or worse, that I had developed neuropathy 8 weeks after chemo ended. He laughed and said it was funny that I had decided these were the only 2 possible choices. He did unfortunately confirm that it was likely neuropathy and so I am taking what seems to me like heavy doses of gabapentin which combined with hot soaks, local creams and now compression hose have finally started to ease the pain. Mostly I have just decided to accept that I will have pain most of the time, some days better than others and I am being optimistic that this is just a blip in the road and this will resolve on its own. Overall I know that my journey has been easier on me than so many other people with cancer, so I will continue to smile and accept that this is all part of the process.
I know I can do this, and I know I have no choice. Some days I am just sad but I know that this too is normal. Without the support of family, dear friends, fantastic staff and the best patients any doctor could ask for, I know this would be so much harder. Thank you again to everyone for loving me as much as I love you all.
       ❤️ Loren

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