Saturday, October 26, 2013


ROUND 1:  The fear came from not knowing what to expect or how my body would react.  But I went in with a strong attitude and made some friends along the way.
9/26/13 (Just ten days after my diagnosis)

This is where I started to get nervous

This is called The Red Devil

The treatment center

Cytoxan, another chemo drug

Then I had to get a shot the next day to stimulate white blood cell growth in my bone marrow.  This causes bone pain.  The shot itself is excruciating.

Then came the effects of chemo......It's all a blur for me....

ROUND 2:   And I was terrified...

Eating ice chips because the chemo burns my mouth

Leaving with my brain feeling sloshy

The chemo cape gives me momentary strength

Eating popsicles to try and get the chemo taste out of my mouth

Then the shot....

Days of this....

ROUND 3:  Supposedly the worst (and I can attest that so far this has been the worst)

I was strong and ready to take this round

A friend sent miracle fruit to help with the chemo taste
Port has been accessed and I'm ready (I think)

The Red Devil is extremely dangerous

The nurse has to "suit" up in a gown and gloves.  She indicated that if
it touches your skin, it will eat through she pumps it into my heart

The effects hit me immediately and there is no way to describe how it feels

The best way to describe it is the flu times 100

It immediately makes my eyes bloodshot and puffy to the point of
barely being able to keep them open without pain

Another 30 minutes with Cytoxan 

This round is kicking my butt

Before my painful shot on Friday, I had to head to the Cardiologist.  I've had lots of dizziness and lighthheadedness when I stand.  And I have shortness of breath with any physical exertion (like walking).  My blood pressure remains in the low range, around 90/50, and I'm having heart palpitations that make me feel like I'm going to pass out.  I'm not dehydrated, and my labs look great.  So to be safe, the oncologist sent me to have my heart checked out.

Waiting for the Cardiologist

Meeting with the Cardiologist

 They did an EKG in the office, and I'm currently wearing a heart event monitor for the next ten days. I have another Echocardiogram scheduled this coming Monday.  The chemotherapy I'm on (Adriamycin) can cause serious heart damage, so everyone wants to make sure I'm safe.

For now, I go back to fighting the nausea, pain, and fatigue.  This round is rough.  


  1. You are strong. You are full of willpower. You will defeat this! We are rooting for you in this fight against the monster. Go Ann!!

  2. Dear Ann: From Uncle Paul: It is hard to find the words that I want to say. You hear them all the time. We are praying for you. Prayer is powerful. Think of what Christ did on the cross. There is one big difference with his suffering - His was planned since the beginning of this world.
    You are still in our prayers.
    Uncle Paul

  3. Hi Ann. I don't know if you remember me. We went to YIS and YHS together.....Becki Shackelford. I got a "you should like" on Facebook regarding your FB site and then found this. I am so very sorry you are having to deal with this. My prayers to you and your family that you kick breast cancer in the ass. I work at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics Breast Center. I work in Breast Imaging and assist with breast biopsies. Though I have absolutely no idea what you are going through with the diagnosis of breast cancer, I do understand what you have been through and are going through on the medical side. My email is if you wanna talk. Be strong, but also remember it is ok sometimes to not be strong. Let others help you. I can tell from reading this blog and your family blog, you are an amazingly strong woman.

    p.s. my daughter was diagnosed at age 7 with an extremely mild form of CP. Such a long story. Your son is obviously very lucky to have such an amazing mom on his side.