The Days After Chemo

I woke up yesterday feeling…Great! Wait a minute. That can’t be right. Let me check again. Day after chemo and I am feeling…really good! Huh? But everyone said the first is the worst. Everyone said I would be hanging over a toilet or unable to move from the couch or feeling like I was hit with the worst flu of my life! And I felt none of these things. Holy Crap! Did they give me the wrong chemo? Did I get the placebo?

Ok, I had a minor irrational freak out about how this could not possibly be right and then I said, great! Let’s take this day and be grateful. I woke up on Friday with this extreme ball of energy stuck in the pit of my stomach. My little Pokemon wanted to  burst its ball and start kicking ass. I also woke up to the reddest pee of my life. It was as if the Kool-aid man had busted through my uterine wall.  It was only once, but I am glad the nurse told me that this would happen or else I would have been in the first Uber to the hospital. I had zero nausea, zero fatigue, zero loss of appetite, zero change in my taste buds…nothing. The only indication that I had had chemo the day before was the throbbing bruise-like feeling in my left arm where the IV had been.

I took a shower, ate breakfast, and made my mom take me for a walk. She was still super aware about over-doing it and kept my “I’m Super Kim! The beater of Chemo” attitude in check. All day, I watched movies, graded papers, answered correspondence, and checked off item after item from my list of things to do. I kept thinking “if this is what chemo is like, then I’ve got this in the bag.”

I did have a few side effects as the day wore on – my cheeks became incredibly flushed. I looked like a little old British man. And I had the worst gas of my life. I am NOT a bodily functions person. I do not burp or fart in public. No. Never! But I would be in the middle of a sentence and BLOOOOPPP. Out popped this old man, fog horn burp. WTF! Fatigue hit a little by late afternoon and I crashed hard for about an hour and a half.  Then I was up and back at it. My kids are going to either be elated or pissed that all of their work is graded with feedback.  I even survived my mom meeting the boyfriend for the first time! He was so sweet to come and visit. I could tell he was a little freaked by the whole thing and had way more questions than before. But seeing me pretty normal made it much easier.

Waking up today was no different. The arm still hurts a bit, but everything is pretty normal. Who knows, maybe the next treatment will be the doozy or the fifth or the tenth. I’m taking this one day at a time, one treatment at a time, one symptom at a time. But for now, I am extremely grateful that the first was not the worst. I think it eased everyone into this process. I think it made it easier for everyone to wrap heads around the fact that I have cancer and this is going to be a war, but the battles will be manageable and will be won…by me.

3 thoughts on “The Days After Chemo

  1. I’m happy to hear your day 1 wasn’t too bad (and I’m glad your mom is there to keep Super Kim in check). Reading this made me laugh out loud and brought back a memory I had totally forgotten. The gas! I think it only happened once and only lasted for a day or two, but it was literally like someone shoved an air pipe in one end of me and a trumpet in the other.
    Hope day two after chemo is as “good” as day 1 (but without the gas).
    Go Super Kim! (and take care of Kim)


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