Let the chemo begin…

Eric's Journal
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Well, today was my first day of chemotherapy. To begin my day I decided to get as prepared for this shit as possible. I got up and took a shower with of course the assisted use of the bench that they provide in the stall. Afterwards I brushed my teeth, combed my hair, and put on some antiperspirant. After getting dressed, I decided to take a few laps around the unit to get my last few steps in before I begin my regiment.

Below is a picture of the unit to get a feeling of how things are.

23 laps is equivalent to a mile. I’ve labeled the room numbers along with what I call the “command center.” This is where all of the nurses do whatever they need do along with the doctors. The hallway is where we walk our laps and the food room has all sorts of stuff available to the patients. Everything from apple juice to hot chocolate. They’ve got pudding, ice cream, fruit, etc…kind of a nice perk.

After I was done walking, I came back to my room and was hooked back up to my IV pump where three separate chemotherapies were already waiting for me. They called it a MEC mixture. M stands for Mitoxantrone. E stands for Etoposide. C stands for Cytarabine. Cytarabine is one of the nastiest if not the worst chemotherapy there is. Anyways, all of the chemicals dripped into me over about 2.5 hours and they will do the same every day for the next 4 days after today.

I guess one somewhat comical or strange occurrence was the Mitoxanatrone. I took a picture of it so you get an idea of the color of this stuff. It was as blue as blue could be. And guess what, it turned my urine blue as well…guess it was one of the side effects; pretty minor in the grand spectrum of things. I actually got a kick out of it. I pretended I was Papa Smurf for awhile.

After the chemo was finished I sat around awhile and rested. A short while later, three of my good high school friends showed up: Nathan, Jason, and Elijah…although we forgot to take a picture before Elijah left. We had a good time, shared old stories, and caught up on what everyone has been up to.

By the time they left I was feeling extremely tired. I knew my old roommates from Whitewater were on their way to see me so I quick tried to get a good 45 minute powernap before they got here.

About 45 minutes or so later, Derrik and Tom arrived and we also had a good time. It was real nice seeing them again and I will always remember the crazy days that we had at Whitewater.

My parents and older brother Mike came a short while later and stayed for a few hours to socialize and keep me company.

Even though that this is only the first day of chemo, I can already start feeling of the side effects. Even as I write this at about 9:30pm I am feeling fatigued and a pretty good sized headache….in fact, I think it’s time I call this one quits. I need some rest.

God bless you all and thank you all for all of your prayers and thoughts.