It’s been over a week since the radiation surgery, and I am feeling pretty good these last few days. It’s the magic of steroids. They reduce the swelling around the brain tumors and provide me with energy and an appetite. The negative side effects of face bloating, acne, facial hair, and the inability to sleep in more than a four hour stretch at night – I can handle. I am thankful every day I can get up without feeling nauseous and I can go to work and be somewhat functional at home at the end of the day. I will be taking the steroids in reduced doses over the next 3-4 weeks.
The next update I will get from my medical team on the effects of the surgery will be on November 10. Dr. Bajaj (my radiologist) will review the MRI scans I get on November 8, and depending on the results, will make a plan for next steps. I also meet Dr. Wilkinson (oncologist) later the same day to see if I need to change my current Herceptin treatments, which are now back to every three weeks. My last PET scan a month ago showed no significant tumor growth in my lymph nodes or liver. They are still there – just not advancing in size, which is good.
My hair growth is just now starting in patchy spots. It is way too soon to know how or even if my hair will grow back completely, and honestly, I don’t care. I don’t mind wearing wraps. I don’t miss messing with hair styles, cuts, products, and all that goes into hair-care. That does not mean there is a side of me that would like to look ‘normal.’ Of course that would be ideal. However one major conclusion that I have come to throughout this process is that feeling good is incredibly more important than looking good. I feel good.
As usual, I need to end this post with gobs of gratitude to my supportive family, friends and co-workers. My parents continue to drive my bald headed body to and from work every day, to and from dozens of doctor’s appointments, and have been there for me every step of the way. My patient husband, Chris and my wonderful kids and all those people who have me on prayer lists and offer smiles of encouragement – I could not get out of bed in the morning without you.