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Tuesday, July 20; just lab work this week

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

We had a nice, gentle rain for a few hours last night, so I get another break from having to water the plants. Noticed today I have a couple of tomatoes on my patio tomato plant turning red! Should be able to pick them soon!

I had to go to my oncologist's office to get blood drawn for labs; with the chemo, it's checked every week now. Most weeks, it's just a CBC, but every 4 weeks, I get "the works", my liver is checked, and also my tumor marker. Today was just a CBC, but when I mentioned to the nurse I am still getting the leg cramps, she took extra blood to check my magnesium level too.

Had to take a pain pill when I got home, sciatica flaring up with the crazy weather this week. Feel better now, but the pain pills make so tired, even if I take just half of one.

I got out my pedal exerciser which I haven't used in a long time; did just 5 minutes with the legs; that's all I can do without my hip hurting. It can also be put on a table and you can work your arms; I hadn't tried that before, I was thinking the arms would be easy, but I was wrong! I only lasted 2 minutes with the arms. I'd love to get a short walk in tonight, but I don't think it's going to cool down enough outside for that.

I have some plain chicken roasting in the oven right now. I am going to try a new Hungry Girl recipe for some Thai style chicken wrapped in lettuce. And I am cooking enough chicken to have to use in meals for the rest of the week too.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LIFE_IS_SO_GOOD 7/21/2010 3:31PM

    I hope your magnesium levels are way down ... that would be an easy fix and your leg cramps will be history! emoticon

I wish we would get some rain. It keeps skipping right over us ... I am, afterall, just on the other side of the lake from you emoticon

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BKWHITE3 7/20/2010 9:17PM

    Hope your lab work is all good. emoticon

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DENI_ZEN 7/20/2010 9:14PM

    I hope all your lab work will look great, Shari...and that was an excellent idea the nurse had, given your leg cramps. If it turns out your magnesium-deficient, it's easy to take a little supplement for that. I'm glad you tried the pedal exerciser on your upper body; I've used one in the gym that way (can't remember what they called it). I got a GOOD cardio workout that way - just kept going a long time, whereas I can't exercise my lower body like that (bad hip). Your chicken sounds soooo good! I've got to try that :) Have a restful evening, and dream about those tomatoes! - Sandi emoticon

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ELLFIN3 7/20/2010 7:35PM

    Glad you told the nurse about the leg cramps! Hope they can tell you what to do for this!! Wow fresh tomatoes! Rest well and have a great Wednesday!!!!!! emoticon emoticon

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LOVES_ANIMALS 7/20/2010 5:43PM

    I love Thai food. Hope it comes out good for you!

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Not a bad day for a Monday

Monday, July 19, 2010

Once again, I had a hard time dragging myself out of bed, but I got up a little bit after 8am. I had breakfast and got ready to run my errands for the day. By the time I left my house around 9:15am, I was feeling better.

Got things done pretty quickly even though I wasn't trying to hurry. Went to Rite Aid, Meijers for grocery, and the gas station and was back home before 10:30am. Left leg with the sciatica was feeling a little weak when I got home. I have 4 steps on my porch to get to the front door, and today, it took me a little longer to get everything inside; I had to use one hand so that I had the other hand free to hold on to the railing as I was going up the steps. The weakness in that leg bothers me more than the pain sometimes; I worry that some day it will get worse and really affect my ability to walk. But I don't feel the weakness all the time; and sometimes I will have pain without the weakness, and vice-versa.

I did a short workout this afternoon using my light weights and stability ball. Had to push myself to get started, but I really want to improve my number of fitness minutes this week, since I only had 40 minutes last week.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LIFE_IS_SO_GOOD 7/21/2010 3:35PM

    Maybe chemo itself is making it weaker for the time being. One side of me was weaker in chemo and I had to use the hand rails ... never found out the reason why but it improved after chemo.

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FLORIDASUN 7/21/2010 9:58AM

    YOU are such an inspiration dear friend! The fact that you do so many things in view of what you are going through is truly amazing! I know of so many others who would just sit around feeling sorry for themselves...but not you! Amazing you are! I hope you continue to improve...I know with your optimistic outlook and your determination to push forward you will! Hugs, hugs and MORE hugs! emoticon

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LASARRE 7/19/2010 9:37PM

    Good job.

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DENI_ZEN 7/19/2010 9:29PM

    WOW! You sure got a lot done, Shari! I'm blown away - and you were still working on getting in more exercise minutes! Be careful not to wear yourself out too much. You might want to mention that leg's weakness to your doctor, as weakness in a leg can be a sign of nerve damage. Don't stress the leg too much and give it some rest. Maybe the strength will come back soon. emoticon - Sandi emoticon

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CELLOPLAYER1 7/19/2010 9:16PM

    Glad to here you had a good day!

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CARRAND 7/19/2010 9:12PM

    You are so inspiring. I'm going to go do my yoga right now! I need more fitness minutes, too.

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LOVES_ANIMALS 7/19/2010 8:39PM

    Slow and safe is a good idea!

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ELLFIN3 7/19/2010 6:52PM

    Here I sit talking myself out of working out tonight and there is not a thing wrong with me! Maybe after reading all you did today, I had better do some kind of workout!!! Rest Well and have a wonderful Tuesday!!!!!!!!

emoticon emoticon

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BKWHITE3 7/19/2010 6:21PM

    Good job getting everything done and home by 10:30.

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RRP546 7/19/2010 5:04PM

  pulled yourself out of bed at 8 oclock,that is a nice day

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Lazy Sunday

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Today I was lazy and stayed in my pajamas all day, but I'm ok with that; I haven't done that in awhile, and I think with having just had chemo on Tuesday, I earned it.

It was a good day to stay inside; it's been hot, humid, and rainy at times outside. A thunderstorm woke up me up around 6:30am, but I was so tired I slept through most of it. Heard some more thunder in the afternoon, but no severe weather here, but there was a tornado warning about 2 counties north of here around 6pm.

It seems with each chemo, that the fatigue hits me a little harder, and I have at least through September before I am finished.

Tomorrow, it's "back to life" again; I have my shopping list all ready for the drug store and grocery store tomorrow, and I'll need to fill up the car with gas again too. I even have my clothes laid out for the morning, so I can save time and get going as early in the morning as possible, before it gets too hot out.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FLORIDASUN 7/21/2010 10:02AM

    You have certainly earned the right to have a day in p.j.'s. We all need them once in awhile. The fact that I do the brunt of my work out of the house finds me lingering to get dressed up once in awhile too. If you ever want to talk crafty...just remember I'm only a Spark page away! I'm cooking up a neat idea for a headband now. I have a friend who is an exercise diva...and every time I see her I think how adorable she would be if I create a little beaded exercise band for her.....inspiration flows eternal! emoticon emoticon

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CHANDANI 7/19/2010 10:19AM

    I hope you're feeling better today!

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MARTHA-ANN 7/19/2010 3:21AM

    Lucky you, I had to help my DH re-line a koi pond...we had fun though, you try catching thirtytwo very fast fish!

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TRISHAANN56 7/19/2010 12:32AM

    Lazy Sunday are very good occasionally.

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LOVES_ANIMALS 7/18/2010 10:26PM

    Have a good Monday!

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DENI_ZEN 7/18/2010 9:52PM

    I've always known rest to be as power-packed as medicine when it comes to battling chronic health conditions, and I'm so glad you've given in to your increased need for sleep right now :) That's real wisdom. In this kind of heat, I always pop out of the house early in the day, too. The afternoons are just too draining! Good for you, Shari - emoticon - Sandi emoticon

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BKWHITE3 7/18/2010 8:49PM

    Glad you had a " Lazy Sunday".

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ROSES17 7/18/2010 8:04PM

    Glad you had a "Lazy Sunday" also. Hope your chemo goes okay Tuesday. Keep your chin up.

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ELLFIN3 7/18/2010 8:01PM

    Glad you had a restful Sunday!! Stay cool tomrrow! And be sure to stay hydrated!!!! Have a Great Monday!!!!!!!!!! emoticon emoticon

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ZZYYGGY 7/18/2010 7:58PM

    Some days are just good to rest.

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Starting to feel better again

Saturday, July 17, 2010

I was really tired last night; went to sleep a little after 11pm, and when I woke up next, I felt like I had been sleeping for hours, but it was only a little after midnight. I woke up a few more times during the night, but overall I think I got better sleep than I have in over a week. I didn't set the alarm today, just decided I was going to sleep as long as I wanted too, and got up around 9am.

No leg cramps today, but that leg still feels a little tender. I did some stretches before I went to bed last night, and had a heating pad wrapped around my leg while I was doing my reading. Also made sure I got plenty of fluids today, including some no calorie Power Ade. Felt good enough to do some light cleaning and 2 loads of laundry today.

Had to water the plants tonight, with having the heavy rain a couple of times this week, I got a little lax with the watering; my poor tomato and cucumber plants were so wilted! I gave them lots of water, and hope by tomorrow they are looking a lot better. I have one of each of them, both in large containers. I have a lot of green tomatoes, and today, I noticed the beginnings of a couple of cucumbers. I really should have watered last night too.

I did some leg stretches on my steps before I came in, and I'll do my "laying down" stretches when I go to bed tonight.

I would have loved to have tried a short walk tonight, but I thought it was just a little too warm out, and figured it would be a good idea to give my sore calf muscle at least another day to heal. I did a short workout with my stability ball and light weights. So, that gives me 40 fitness minutes for the week, not bad for my "chemo" week, but I would have liked to fit another 20 minutes in there somewhere. I think dragging the heavy garden hoses around the yard burned a few calories tonight too; I was so tired when I was done, (I have 3 hoses connected together, 2 regular and a coiled one), that I didn't even finish winding all of the hose onto the holder on the shed when I was done. I know I'd never get a job with the fire department if I can't even wind up a garden hose, lol.

At least one thing going right for me is that I am still staying within my goal weight range. I've been doing a lot better lately with getting more fruit and vegetable servings in. But that's always easier to do this time of year, with all the fresh produce in season now.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FLORIDASUN 7/21/2010 10:10AM

    Such a trooper you are. I love the way that you just manage things as they come along. Try this excellent green drink. I'd check to make sure it doesn't interfere with any of your meds...but they say this stuff is as POWERFUL as a blood transfusion...I swear by it!

Green Lemonade:
1 head romaine lettuce or celery
5-6 stalks Kale (or you can buy it pre-washed in a bag) I always wash again though.
1 whole organic lemon (no need to peel but wash well)
1-2" of fresh ginger root

You can use really any greens chard, collards, spinach, cucumbers, etc.

Put in blender and blend well.

Start with 12 oz going up to 24 oz then 40 oz. 30 minutes before OR after food.

It's chalk full of healing vitamins and minerals and is very detoxifying.

Just make sure it won't conflict with your regimen...but I think you will find it helpful.

Hugs! emoticon emoticon

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CARRAND 7/18/2010 6:38PM

    So glad you're feeling better! Hopefully you got your watering done in time to rescue your plants. I have one plant on the front step that really wilts in a hurry, but it perks up again with a little water. I haven't killed it yet.

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TERI99 7/18/2010 4:46PM

    This summer heat must make your treatment recovery harder. It drags me down and I am not dealing with anything like that. Take it easy!

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LOVES_ANIMALS 7/18/2010 12:42PM

    Sounds good!

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DENI_ZEN 7/18/2010 11:25AM

    You've done a great job of ridding yourself of that leg cramp - emoticon I'll bet you find all sorts of such inventive solutions to the problems which crop up during chemo - hats off! You're so proactive, Shari; it's a valuable character trait! You'll be harvesting those cukes and tomatoes soon; we are down here in VA (or shall I say, the farmer's market's reflecting that :). Got some beautiful cukes and tomatoes there yesterday. What a feather in your cap that you've both been able to maintain your goal weight AND managed to get in those fitness minutes - emoticon emoticon - Sandi emoticon

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CAROLYN0107 7/17/2010 11:39PM

    emoticon on staying in your weight range while going through all your treatment!

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BKWHITE3 7/17/2010 11:10PM

    I'm glad that you are feeling better.

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ELLFIN3 7/17/2010 9:51PM

    I am so glad you are feeling better! You had said Gatorade! I know my Sister has trouble with her stomach and Gatorade! She drinks Smart Water! She works in a plant where it is very hot! Rest well and have a great Sunday!!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Had a tough morning, still feeling sore today

Friday, July 16, 2010

Woke up with a painful leg cramp again; this time in my right calf instead of the left. I am going to mention it to the oncology nurse when I get my lab work done on Tuesday; I'm having this more often since I've been on the chemo. I'm thinking it could be related to that, or a side effect of the Neulasta injections. It's 5pm, and that leg still hurts. When I had that bad cramp in my other leg over the 4th of July weekend, that hurt for almost a week.

I slept last night, but still, it was hard to get up out of bed and get going this morning. I still have most my chemo to go. I found myself thinking, "How can keep on doing this?" I get so tired of being tired all the time! But my best friend's son was coming over to mow the lawn for me, so I had to get up.

Once I had some breakfast and was dressed, I did feel a little better. My best friend's husband dropped off their son, and he got started on my lawn, and his dad gave me a ride to the body shop where I picked up my car; so glad to have to have my car back! And so thankful for Thomas mowing my lawn; I'm grateful that I don't have that chore to do this weekend. Usually I don't mind it too much, I have a very small yard, but it's hard to do the same week I have chemo. And he refused to let me pay him. He and his sister are very special to me; I use to babysit them when they were small, now they are in their 20's. They have always called me Aunt Shari.

Not feeling as light headed today, but still tired. All I did today was one load of laundry, some bedsheets; and I've also been scanning some of my old photos, those I took prior to getting my digital camera into my computer and uploaded into my albums on Facebook. Still have a lot of photos to scan, but it will take awhile. Trying to get some old family photos from my mom to scan too, as well as my old school pictures.

I don't think dehydration is causing my leg cramps, but I am making sure I drink plenty of water anyway, even if it means extra trips to the bathroom. (I guess that's a way of getting in some exercise anyway, lol). I am also going to try doing some stretches before I go to bed. And I am going to have to make the commitment and actually do them every night, no excuses! I need to be proactive and try to prevent the leg cramps before they happen.

I am hoping to feel better to get caught up on my housework. I know I could ask for help with that, but it's important to me to do as much for myself as possible. I can't just use cancer as an excuse to sit all day. And since I am no longer working, it helps to add some structure to my week so that I still feel useful, even if it is only to myself. But I do not miss working at all; I loved the people I worked with, but hated the company I worked for.

There is also something satisfying about getting the simple, mundane chores done, and seeing the results of my work; I took for granted being able to get all those things and often complained about them before I had all my health problems. Now when I am able to do those things, I feel contentment in a job well done. As long as I can still sweep the floor, vacuum the carpet, do the laundry, I am not doing too bad at all!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HOPE2BE 7/17/2010 9:21AM

    Shari that's wonderful that you're still accomplishing that much. I too suffered and still suffer from leg cramps. I usually take, I've run out, magnesium pills because they are supposed to help for cramps. I take 1/2 of mg. of what I take of calcium. For instance I take 1500 mg. of calcium so I take 750 or 800 mg. of magnesium. Usually this helps but I've run out and don't have the money to buy more. You could ask your Dr. which I did, and find out if this is right for you or if you need more.

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LIFE_IS_SO_GOOD 7/16/2010 9:59PM

    I think it's important that you do what you can because it keeps you moving BUT on the days it's too much you need to let people help --- like that guy today. It makes him feel good to be of use to you!

I had leg cramps too when I had chemo ... maybe they can figure out why. I hope so!

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PRETTYSPECIAL 7/16/2010 9:58PM

  My 22 year old son is fighting bone cancer. he has relapsed six times now in the four years since he was diagnosed. He knows about pain from the Neulasta injections all to well. The cramps could be from the chemo or a deficiency like potassium/calcium maybe you could try gatorade and eat things like tomatoes and bananas. Hang in there Shari. Have a great weekend. I will keep you in my prayers.---from new member Teresa


Comment edited on: 7/16/2010 10:00:39 PM

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NANFACEMIRE1 7/16/2010 9:33PM

    You are doing a great job. I hope you are feeling better really soon. Nancy

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ELLFIN3 7/16/2010 8:44PM

    You hang in there! You do more than most people without cancer do!! I agree not only drink water but drink something with electrolytes!! Check with the Dr but I know that being low on electrolytes and mineral can cause cramping! REST Well!! And have a good Saturday!!!!

emoticon emoticon

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LOVES_ANIMALS 7/16/2010 8:33PM

    I love the smell of fresh mown grass!

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CARRAND 7/16/2010 8:05PM

    You always seem to get a lot done, even on your worst days. I like to get things done around the house, too. I'm still working full time, so I value my time at home to do some cleaning and organizing. I'm envious that you are getting your pictures scanned. That is a project that I hope to tackle after I retire.

I love your good attitude and hope you will have a good weekend.

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DENI_ZEN 7/16/2010 7:40PM

    Shari, I'm always so amazed at how much you ALWAYS accomplish, even on what sounds like a rough chemo day. You'll love having all your photos scanned. Ours are on CDs, so I didn't have to store the vast amount of old family albums we have (my brother wanted them, but then he scanned everything, too :) It does take a long time, doesn't it? Good for you!

I hope the chemo nurse is able to shed some light on the cause of these cramps. Meanwhile, while you're awake (and never when you're asleep), how would it be to use a heating pad on the affected parts of your legs? I know that's helped me in the past. Yesterday evening, I had some powerful cramps in my left calf, though they're from a different cause. Have a good weekend! I need that feeling of being useful and productive, too. - Sandi emoticon

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VALI_T 7/16/2010 7:13PM

    Does your chemo med affect your magnesium level? I ask this question because I know that cramps, in particular leg cramps, are sometimes caused by a low magnesium level in the blood. If you're not already taking magnesium it might be worth asking your doctor if it would be okay to take it while you're on chemo. (I just hate leg cramps and I hope that yours go away really soon.)

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CHANDANI 7/16/2010 6:19PM

    I hope you feel better soon. emoticon

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TUFFYBIRD 7/16/2010 5:53PM

    Is it possible that the muscle spasms are a side effect of the chemo cocktail? I vaguely remember hearing somewhere that some drugs can do that; if it is, maybe there is something your oncologist could give you to help.

Scheduling housework is something I've had to re-learn since I retired. When I was working there was pressure to get it done because I had so little time in which to accomplish the things I needed to do; now that I have all my time available I find it easier to put off chores "I'll get to it ..." I gotta stop that!

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KOKSIE 7/16/2010 5:29PM

    You are doing a very great job.

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