Sore. No. Yep. I looked away. Standard procedure. And, I totally expected to have worked myself up for nothing. Today, it wasn't. (TBCs, skip to the next paragraph, you don't want to know this). That was the first removal of blood that hurt. I felt the needle go in, stay there and I even felt the steel (not sure what needles are made out of, but it felt like steel) slide out, just before the nurse pushed on the small ball of cotton. I flinched. I think I even made a I'm-in-pain sound. In fact, as the blood went into the tube, I heard a slurping noise. The nurse made some comment about it being like sand. I'm not sure what that meant. The point is though, the hardened veins made for a sore withdrawal of blood.
I went for a walk, to kill the 90 minutes before my next appointment. When it was time, I took a leisurely walk through the very busy hospital. I was well. I certainly didn't feel as though I needed to be there. (Self high-five!)
Unlike previous appointments, I wasn't greeted by my smiling breast cancer buddies. There was a new crowd. I really didn't belong here anymore. I recognised a lady that I had shared radiation appointments with and we chatted until she was called in. Who would have thought, a year ago, that I would find tamoxifen, changes in cancer drugs and hair growth such stimulating conversation?
I wasn't with the chemo doctor for long. Tamoxifen is my new drug of choice. It's a chemo drug. The worst it can do is increase the chance of deep vein thrombosis by 2%. Secondary to that, is that it can bring on menopause. Too late. I'm already in that state. Although, my hot flushes seem to be less these last few days. And, honestly, there is more to enjoy about being in this state than not (you know what I'm talking about ladies!). Having said that, as a young woman, it's pretty likely that I'll come out of the menopause cupboard, even while on tamoxifen.
I felt very happy as I left the hospital today. There just have been so many moments of celebration. And, strangely enough, it seemed like today was one of those moments. The radio was loud, my scarf was off and I was the happiest driver on the road.
When I got home, I was really tired. Sorry about that family. That high just couldn't hold out for that long. But, I had some paleo ice-cream waiting for me. That was a great surprise. For real! Yeah, I know what you're thinking. What cave family would have access to an ice cream maker? Well, it doesn't matter. It's more of a cheat for child one and two. But this afternoon, the husband and I had some too.
Strawberry Ice Cream:
Tomorrow, I'll start tamoxifen. I'll then have five weeks until I see the chemo doctor again, to report, hopefully nothing, about the drug's effect on me. I wish I knew right now, how my body was going to react. But, we all love a good surprise...don't we?