Goodbye 5 vials of blood….not sure if I want the blood test results to come back and show a problem, or if I want everything to come back normal. What I do know, is that I’m tired of this off and on severe pain throughout my entire body and I’d like some answers!
Over the past 3 1/2 years, I’ve been really good about documenting the medicines and supplements I’ve taken, as well as what pain and side effects I’ve had, whether it’s been from Chemo or a drug that I’m trying to take to try and prevent the cancer from returning.
This morning, I sat with my fabulous primary care doctor, Dr. Jessica McAbee, and we looked through all the journaling I’ve done since August 2016, when I took the first hormone blocking pill. 5 days later this pain started and has come and gone ever since. While a high dose of vitamin D has helped some, the only thing we know for sure is that these 4 drugs (Arimidex, Aromasin, Femara and Tamoxifen) all give me the same side effects and even when I am off them, the pain doesn’t totally go away, at least not for long. I had no pain like this before I started taking them. So the question is, why do I still have the pain when the medicine is supposedly out of my system? Are there long term side effects from these pills? That is my biggest question today!
So this morning, Dr. McAbee ordered every test she could think of, inside and outside of the box, which totaled 5 vials of blood, to rule out a whole bunch of things (autoimmune disorders, rheumatoid arthritis…things like that). I also messaged my oncologist to hear his thoughts on long term side effects from these drugs.
Right now here’s my main thought – 2 1/2 years is a long time to deal with this and I’m just about done. I’ve given it my best effort! I really have! But if taking a pill to try and prolong my life makes me feel like this, then it’s not worth it. I’m done!
If I’m being honest, I have had thoughts that stopping the pill is like a death sentence….that somehow these pills are what are keeping the cancer away and if I stop trying to take them, it will return.
That might be the case.
I know the statistics for stage 4 breast cancer.
It can come back at any time.
But God is so much bigger than a little pill or a statistic. He alone knows how many days I have left. My hope is in Him, not in a pill. And while I’m very thankful for modern medicine and the men and women who have more medical knowledge than I do, God is ultimately in control. That is what I have to cling to and remember.
I admit I’m discouraged, and a little sad, and don’t really feel like doing anything at the moment. I will probably regret the decision to eat pie and ice cream for lunch while watching I Love Lucy instead of prepping dinner and doing laundry. But at the moment, I’m struggling to “adult”. Tonight we’ll warm up lasagna for dinner and might not have a fruit or vegetable with it. We’ll probably have more pie. We’ll watch more TV than we should. I’ll probably take another Tramadol just so I can get through the night and function somewhat. The house will not be as clean as I’d like and tomorrow someone might have to wear a pair of jeans out of the laundry basket. Oh well. We’ll survive.
If you are still reading….thanks. I hope this doesn’t come across as complaining. I don’t mean for it to…still just trying to be honest and transparent and show what life looks like in the years after active cancer treatment. It doesn’t end after the last chemo, radiation or surgery. 🙁
I’m always thankful for comments, so please leave them below. However, and I say this in the most loving way I can type, I am not looking for advice, so thank you for understanding and respecting that. 🙂