Our First Trip to Dana Farber Cancer Institute


Yesterday morning Jamie and I took our first trip up to Dana Farber Cancer Institute. I had a small breakdown in the morning because after I got out of the shower I ran my hands through my hair like I normally do and when I looked down at my hand I had a good amount left in my hand. I know and have heard so many people say, "It's just hair" or "at least your hair is short" but when you find it coming out the way it does with chemo, it's the most unreal feeling. It sinks everything in even more. I know it will grow back, that's not my concern, it's just another change that takes some getting use to and the emotions you get from it, only someone who has been there can relate. 

So about our trip to Boston, it was a very long day yesterday, but glad we got to meet the DFCI (Dana Farber Cancer Institute) Oncologists that are working with my Oncologist back here in CT. We basically went over (in better and deeper depth) my cancer, it's stage, survival rate, cure rate, being pregnant with cancer, and what will happen and continue to happen as we fight to beat the cancer. Everything has a very great outlook, we are so optimistic that this six months of chemo will clear it from my body!  If there happened to be some stubborn parts that are not reactive to the chemo we won't know till after I deliver. Reason being, they won't be doing anymore scans on me till then. Once I deliver they will do a PET Scan with radioactive dye and that will light up anything that is cancerous or potentially cancerous in my body still. Imaging of my cancer has been tricky because for those who have read my previous journal entry's you know with me being pregnant I wasn't able to have a PET/CT Scan, only MRI's without contrast so though we get a good idea of the cancer, we don't totally get the whole picture. So I'm looking forward to them being able to do a PET/CT Scan after our son arrives.  Our hope is the PET/CT Scan comes back clear or mostly for that matter, but if things are still hanging around a little I will still have about two or so months left of chemo at that point (after delivery) so another scan will be done at the end of the treatment course. Of course I asked our Docs up at DFCI, what if parts of the cancer is not responding to the chemo and shrinking like it should (worst case scenario, but I'd rather know then not know) and they said that's when they would introduce radiation and a stem cell transplant along with more chemo. But, for my age they try at ALL costs to avoid radiation in anyone below the age of 30 because chances of the radiation causing breast cancer is very high. Though they monitor you very closely after radiation, there are still just a ton of issues it can cause for me down the road, being still so young. We have faith this won't even have to be a thought though.  We also asked if I will get a small break from chemo after I deliver and that was a no. I will continue through my chemotherapy normally unless I delivered on the day my treatment fails on and of course, in that case they would have to make an exception lol.. So we will still be full steam ahead along with a newborn! On a side note along with having pregnancy brain (forgetting things/foggy brain) I also have chemo brain! Lol and yes these are REAL things! My mind feels very scattered, luckily I'm OCD about having things organized so I make lists of EVERYTHING already so that helps me not to forgot to do things. But holy cow, some of the things I forget or do, all I can do is laugh.   So that is a briefing of our trip to Boston! It was what we expected so that's good. Now we continue to fight and do what we've been doing. Only time will tell. For now and forever we simply enjoy every second of every day; that is another thing I've learned from my cancer, to truly do so. Being at DFCI yesterday and watching all the other cancer patients I came across, I just couldn't even explain how it made me feel. It's like a whole different world when you face life and have to fight for it. I can only image other people's battles and some I know are so much harder then mine. I can only pray for those people and fight along right beside them! No One Fights Alone!