My friend NED
It looks like me and my new BFF “Ned” will be very busy. First we will frolic and spread sparkles around. Next we will move on to the business of following through with the rest of plan to keep me cancer free.
Part of the “Pinch Me” sentiment is that I still feel I am very much in the trenches. There is still much to be done; in fact, I am entering what feels like it will be the busiest part of the cancer treatment. The focus of the treatment from this point forward is to inhibit and prevent cancer growth. Here’s the breakdown of what is ahead:
Oncology: Dr. Wonderful will continue to see me weekly to administer Herceptin, the biological targeted therapy drug that marks any cancer cells so my immune system can kill them. He will not give me an end date for this therapy; forever is a possibility. Herceptin can cause heart damage, so big prayers are needed that my heart will be strong enough to take this drug. Herceptin is critical to the long-term plan.
Cardiology: I’m a lifetime cardiac patient now; I have a daily drug regimin. Dr. Gold will be adjusting my medications and monitoring my heart over the coming months. As Dr. Wonderful said, “The heart is a vital organ, so we have to give it the respect it deserves. We can’t continue Herceptin if your heart won’t tolerate it.” Please pray that my heart stabilizes and/or strengthens. I need my heart and I need my heart to be strong enough to take my cancer-preventing-medicine!
Breast Surgeon: I will continue to see Dr. Awesome for surgical follow-ups. Dr. Awesome will also give me a referral for a lymphedema specialist. Lymphedema is a condition that causes painful swelling in the limb following removal of the associated lymph nodes. Please pray against lymphedema and other complications.
Radiology: I’ll have thirty radiation sessions between now and Thanksgiving: they will use lasers at the surgical site to make the it unreceptive to cancer growth. It is a form of cancer prevention. In my case, radiation increases the risk of heart damage and lymphedema. Please pray that radiation would only get the dangerous spots and that it would leave the healthy spots.
How’s that for a “Please Keep Praying” post? All of this feels easier knowing that I get to do it with NED. God is good. Please pray for my hearts. Both of them. The one that runs my body, and the one that runs my soul.