26 July

Another week has flown by. Just where the heck is the time going?

So the big news for this week is that I now know exactly what to expect for my maintenance treatment and it ain’t pretty. True, it’s certainly better than being hospitalized but the amount of oral meds I’ll be taking is insane. Here’s what I’ve learned: The treatment cycle will be 28 days, just like it was in the hospital. For day 1-5, I’ll be taking 4 Prednisone tablets per day. I’ll also be taking Mercaptopurine, a chemo drug I haven’t had before, three times a day for the duration of my maintenance treatment, which means I’ll be married to a stinkin’ pill bottle for a year. And here’s the really fun part: I get to whark down 14 Methotrexate tablets ALL AT ONCE, once a week for the treatment’s duration. Once a month I’ll be driving in to San Antonio for blood labs, a visit with Dr. Santiago, and a short IV chemo infusion (Vincristine). I don’t know how strong the dosages are for any of the drugs so I have no idea how they’ll affect the way I feel. I’m just starting to feel more like my old self so this news has come as a bit of a blow. In addition, the Vincristine causes hair loss, so I may lose what little hair has grown back. I won’t know just how hard this will be on my overall health until I’ve experienced a few weeks of it so I’ll document my progress here.

The weather today is absolutely perfect – not very hot, partly cloudy, with a nice cool breeze coming out of the east. The last bands of a tropical storm way to the south of us are moving through so we’re having light rain one moment and then the next is bright sunshine. I’m sure it will heat up later today (it always does) but right now it’s wonderful.

I’m getting a bit antsy over my new chemo drugs. On Wednesday of this last week I spoke to one of the pharmacists at my doctor’s office in San Antonio and she told me that there wouldn’t be a problem sending the prescriptions to my local Walgreens here in town. I received a robot call from Walgreens on Friday afternoon saying that my prescription was ready but it turned out to be nausea medication only. My treatment cycle officially begins this next Wednesday when I go in for my first outpatient IV chemo infusion. I’ll need the meds by then if I’m going to stay on schedule. I suppose I’ll have to get on the phone tomorrow to find out when the meds will be ready. Ugh.