Hellooooo Everyone :)
It's a Chemo Dex Day, so here I am up late posting and should be "forcing" myself to sleep. Off to bed I go, see you in the morning!
Oh, Dexamethasone how I love you Now, but how I will hate you Later! You pump me up, prop me up and fake-energize me. You temporarily let me feel "like me" again for 2 days. But how I hate you when you crash me later. As much as I read and ask, I still do not understand the bio-chemical-physio of HOW steroids work on the body. One thing for sure, my body does react well to Dex steroids and my type of myeloma runs scared from Dex.
It's clear now.
If I take a break, my numbers go up. If I stay the course, I maintain livable levels. My labs this month revealed this. This sounds like "Duh Julie", but it really brings home my reality. Myeloma is incurable, it quickly comes roaring back, and as much as I would like to believe I will be ok, I am reminded monthly, I AM NOT! Sorry I mention over and over that I cannot believe I have myeloma. Yes, "Numbers Don't Lie", so slowly I am accepting I have incurable cancer and myeloma owns me. Writing it out here helps me. Telling you here helps me process my reality. Thank you, my invisible friends.
There's much discussion in "MyelomaVille" regarding aggressive treatments with the goal of "Remission" vs viewing myeloma as a "Chronic Illness" and continually treating it. 6+ years into this, having had "aggressive" treatments at onset and diagnosis, resulting in remission after my Stem Cell Transplant, which was only maintained with (almost) continuous myeloma meds, I am now on the "This is Forever and Chronic" bus. The race to "cure" and "remission" with intense, aggressive, body organ compromising treatments is overrated in my mind. I know I will ALWAYS need to be in treatment to keep myeloma from killing me, but I am ok with this. I know of too many, that were either too aggressive or too complacent. Tortoise treatment pace is ok with me, if I have some semblance of quality and happiness each day.
|Aren't you just so "pretty" myeloma|
Earlier this month, I had completed week #1 of Kyprolis + Dex, then had my weird scary heart issue (see my previous post for details). As a result, I skipped treatment week #2 as my oncologist and pharmacist did not want me doing my regular infusions, until the heart issue was further looked into and results from the heart tests were read. I've since found out I have a condition called PVC - (Premature Ventricular Contractions) with "normal irregularities". Not a huge concern, but we're watching and being aware..
But as a result of this little scary episode, I only did 4 Kyprolis infusions vs the normal 6 per cycle in a month. Yep, myeloma took advantage of that, and UP went my IgA. Yep, an eye opener for me, as I always think, "Oh, skipping treatments won't make a difference"... well ha!! Skipping the one week, and then cancelling (my choice) the "make up" week, sure gave myeloma the upper hand again, but gave me the reality check I always need. I am so stubborn and such a hard-learner about this. If I could only get rid of my "magical thinking", and fully accept I am a cancer patient for life... Crazy how missing 2 treatments had such an impact.
So back I go, like a good chemo patient. Beginning cycle #7 yesterday. Monday Tuesday. Monday Tuesday. Monday Tuesday into May. Kyprolis and Dex you are my best friend and worst enemy, but you keep me alive. I embrace the Good days, and accept the Bad days. The chemo lab is my "new office".
Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, off to chemo I go.
Here's my stats for perspective:
(I'm IgA myeloma)
Normal IgA = 70 - 400, Normal IgG = 700 - 1600, Normal IgM = 40 - 230
Date IgA IgG IgM
10/18/15 1890 240 < 18
4/17/16 717 251 < 17
M Protein: PROTEIN ELECTROPHORESIS RESULT, SERUM
Normal = 0
Aug = 1.01
Sep = 1.37
Oct = 1.58
Nov = 1.12
Dec and Jan = Not Detectable! thank you Kyprolis + Dex
Feb = 0.62 Ugh! Quite a jump in a short period of time
March = "Abnormal", but no M-Protein number mentioned
April = Abnormal, but M Protein value not detectable
Aren't animal relationships so amazing!
and live the beauty of another day!
What would I "do" if I REALLY Knew My Time Was Up?...