Good news first?

Today I had my blood drawn for cell counts. When I called into the nurse to get the results, she asked if I “wanted the good news first, or the good news?”

Wow. My platelets are down to 280,000. That is human range again! No more aspirin and no more dang Lovenox shots in the stomach twice a day.

My white blood cell counts are low but respectable. My neutrophils are enough to to take care of myself. And my red blood cells are anemic but high enough!

All counts are coming back up from the consolidation round of chemotherapy. Already!

That means I did it! I went through chemotherapy as an outpatient!!! No easy feat for those fighting leukemia, in my humble opinion.

In fact, the counts were so good, they canceled next week’s blood draw. I do have a full doctor’s appointment late next week. That will include a blood draw for cell counts. And knowing my Oncologist/Hematologist, she will want to do a bone marrow aspirate. Ouch!!!

Some Days Are Just Not That Easy

I woke up this morning to lab services taking my blood at 6:00 AM. That is pretty normal. But this morning they had to stick me three times to get it right. It happens I guess after you have been stuck 900 times in the past seven days. So I got up to put in my contacts and wash-up, and I noticed in the mirror my face is wider. What the? Oh yeah. Steroids. I am taking steroids to counter the effects of the ATRA. Yuck. So with this happy thought I stumble back to bed. Why do I stumble? I have swollen ankles from all the fluids off the IV drips. Meh.

So I talk to my doctors as I do most mornings. Found out I was wrong about the first chemotherapy round. It is actually four doses over eight days. So for this round, we are finished on Monday. Then the fight is on! Out with the mutated cell production in with the new! Then three more rounds of chemotherapy later on. Long road ahead. As for the steroid changes, those should not be permanent. They gave me a diaretic today to start peeing off the fluid retention. So all gets better or right eventually.

Good visit from Sarah today. She has been here for both chemotherapy sessions. It puts my mind at ease. It would be easy to get a little freaked when you know something that strong, that toxic is being dumped in your body.