10 March, 2012

To be completely honest, this has been the worst week of my life!  I knew chemotherapy would be rough and side effects were to be expected, but I had no idea I would have so many of them!  I started feeling nauseous last weekend, which my medications have controlled fairly well.  Then on Monday, I started to have a mouth infection.  My whole mouth felt like pins and needles and the pain was all-consuming.  Thankfully, I got a different medication for that and today my mouth feels 90% back to normal.  On Wednesday, my entire digestive system decided it wanted to shut down.  The result is that every muscle in my body has cramped up and it's extremely painful!  Yesterday, my nurse gave me three different medications to help with the problem -- two are pills and one is a powder that I dissolve in liquid and then drink.  I took the pills and then, after drinking three sips of the liquid, threw up.  I tried all last night to drink it, but couldn't keep anything down.  I was able to drink a little bit of it today, but am still all backed up and having really bad cramps.  And then to top it all off, I got a nose bleed this morning.

A week after I have chemo is when I'm at my nadir, the low point in my health when I am most weak and my blood count is at its lowest.  After that, my health begins to build itself back up and should be almost back to normal two weeks after the chemo, just in time for my next dose.  So hopefully I will start feeling better any day now!  But I hate to complain about all of this, so let's talk about a few good things!

I haven't lost my hair yet, so that's great!  I'm hoping it will stay for a few more weeks, but we'll see.

Also, my brother came down to visit for a couple days.  It's been really good to spend some time with him and to have someone home with me during the day.  On Friday night, Kevin and my Dad went out and bought the board game Settler's of Catan and we all played it for the very first time.  I am so thankful that we were able to spend some time as the whole family and just sit around and play a board game.

We have been researching all sorts of ways to stay healthy during chemotherapy, but everything we've found has been quite controversial.  The one thing that everyone seems to agree upon is that the best way for my body to absorb the most nutrients from fruits and veggies is to juice them.  So, needless to say, I was quite excited when our brand new juicer came in the mail this week!  The combination of my itchy tongue and crampy stomach has made it really difficult for me to eat anything, so the ability to drink lots and lots of fresh juice has been wonderful!  We've been juicing every night and having a lot of fun trying new fruit and veggie combinations!

Everyone has been so supportive!  I've been getting letters and emails from so many different people and I have really appreciated it!  One person who messaged me is Shea Doyle, an old friend from elementary school.  She let me know that she is running the San Diego Rock n Roll half marathon on June 3rd, and that all of her fundraising goes directly to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, which is working specifically to find a cure for Hodgkin's Disease and other forms of blood cancer.  Honestly, it is because of this organization that my cancer has such a high treatment rate and excellent prognosis!  And it is because of people like Shea that their research and work is possible!  So I really hope you'll consider supporting her and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society by donating to her! You can donate by clicking on this link, and I will put a permanent link on the right side of my blog, just in case you want to donate more later :)

Thanks for keeping me in your prayers!  And thanks for listening to me vent about the ups and downs of life with cancer!



  1. Hang in there Lauren. I'm keeping you lifted up.

  2. Love you and praying. So glad you have such great support. Miss you here in Atlanta. Talked about you at MC this week. So encouraged by your beautiful heart for God during this difficult time. We think of you often and are lifting you up to the Father.


  3. Lauren - you special one...you are in my constant thoughts and prayers....I have known you since you were 8 months old and your determination and strong spirit will carry you through these trying times...stay strong sweet one.....Jacque Wilson

  4. Lauren, you are reason running my half marathon means so much! I am continuing to keep you in my thoughts and prayers.