Sorry for the long delay in posting, I've been busy. A good busy! After finishing radiation I hung around Massachusetts long enough to enjoy Thanksgiving Dinner and then I drove back to Virginia the following Saturday. I had a relatively "normal" four weeks with only one doctors appointment and then getting back into work full time.
It has been wonderful to be back at work, I missed having a purpose to my life. I won't lie, being back at work has been exhausting but not so much that I can't get through a shift fine. I'm just in bed pretty early after work, and I haven't done any threes in a row yet, or any overtime. The hardest part was just getting back on that work schedule of waking up at 5:45, my sleeping patterns were all out of whack. It's been great to see everyone at work, lot's of new people too, and I don't know who any of the patients are (that's probably a good thing). What surprised me the most was how many doctors have welcomed me back and asked how I was doing. I guess we do work pretty closely with them but still, there are a lot of nurses, I don't really expect them to notice when one goes missing so that was nice haha.
Ok, so the update you've been waiting for. This Thursday I headed back to Hopkins for the first time since August. I had an MRI, blood work, met with my surgeon and my oncologist. They say my MRI looks great! I've got a whole lot of scar tissue in my noggin now thanks to two surgeries and 33 rounds of radiation but nothing that looked like tumor or anything suspicious. Definitely the best Christmas present. My surgeon still wants to see me every three months or so and I will continue to get MRI's now every two months. Of course I am also continuing with chemo for another six months. It will be the same chemo I was on previously (Temodar) but it will be a higher dose. For the first round they will double my prior dose and then it will be increased once more for the second round and stay that dose for the remaining cycles. The cycles are five days on twenty three days off. I will start this week on Christmas night, which was my choice because I have a weekend trip in early January that I didn't want chemo to interfere with. I will take my chemo Wednesday - Sunday which should give me the best chance to not have to miss any work. I will be able to work Sunday-Tuesday, do my five days of chemo, recover for 2-3 days if necessary then work the last three days of the following week. This first week around will be a trial. Since I had no side effects with the low dose I am hoping that any side effects this time around are mild and manageable. I will tweak my work schedule the following cycles if I have to but for now I'm hoping this way works.
I'll be going home for Christmas on Monday and staying until Thursday. I had already bought my tickets without knowing what my work/chemo schedule would be so I won't be working any day but Sunday this week but hopefully this will be the last time I have to miss so much work for a while.
I'll try to post a picture from Christmas at some point, I got some new hair :-)
Enjoy the Holidays! Thanks for checking in!