Wednesday, July 27, 2011

May 21st, 2011 - Don't know what to do

I'm still undecided about the Yervoy trial. Honestly, if they offered it in Gainesville there would be no question, I'd do it. But the fact that it's 3 hrs away and would require money and a lot of effort to do it... I'm willing to do it, but I don't think my parents are. Mom said tonight that if I wanted to do it, I would have to come up with $500 to pay her for gas and hotel. There's no way. Right now my bank account is overdrawn $200. Having $500 free and clear may as well be a million dollars. I keep reading blogs about other people fighting Melanoma, and almost every one of them followed up their surgeries with some kind of chemical therapy. My mom thinks I'm fine, I'm going to BE fine. I think she just doesn't want to face the truth that this could still not be over, or that it could rear it's ugly head a few months from now, or a year, etc. I know traveling to Tampa to get the chemo would be hard on my parents, they are both in their 70's, and I know it would cause my parents to fight. They argue about everything. Usually my mom wants to do whatever I want and my dad is a grouchy old man and has a million excuses about why we can't do whatever it is.

I know if I did this chemo trial, there's only a %50 chance that I would be getting the actual drug. It's a blind placebo trial. If I went through all the effort and ended up not getting the drug, I would be pissed, but at least I would know I did everything in MY power to make sure the cancer is gone. Just sitting here, doing nothing feels like I'm playing Russian Roulette. Pull the trigger and see what happens. I think everyone in my family was at Defcon 1 the past two months and now they are back at 5. Situation normal, everything's good. Me? I'm still at Defcon 3. I just don't know what to do. I don't. I don't want my family to fight. I don't want my parents to argue or to have to drive me 3 hrs away for treatment. I don't have the money to pay them. I don't want anyone in my family unhappy.

But I'm scared to do nothing.

When they did my PET scan last month before my last surgery they found a spot behind my left knee, so I have to go have an MRI next Wednesday to try and find out what it is. The surgeon said she thinks it's just a "functional cyst" no big deal, but I have this nightmare of her calling me to tell me it's a melanoma tumor. Luckily the odds of that happening are low. Usually when Melanoma comes back it's in your liver, lungs, or brain. But... fingers crossed. I'm still gonna be nervous anyways.

I went to the Davis Cancer Pavilion yesterday where my oncologist is to have my first physical therapy session. Mostly it was a lot of questions and examining and measuring, and testing my range of motion. The lady (thank god it was a female) was super nice, and I had no problem taking my shirt off to show her my scars. She definitely agreed that my right breast is more swollen than the left, and down that side of my torso is swollen as well. My upper right arm is swollen but not too badly. She wants me to wear the hated compression bra that my surgeons made me wear (grumble grumble) and said they may even have to get a binder for my breasts to offer even more compression. Apparently compression is the best way of keeping lymphadema in check. Yes, just call me a little Chinese girl, binding her breasts to look like a It doesn't sound real comfy, either. All I can say is, if they continue wanting me to do these physical torture things, they better give me some good meds. Honestly, I'm taking Percocet now for pain since the surgery, and I don't even feel it. I don't really notice much of a difference. So something stronger would be nice. When I got home yesterday I was so exhausted and after having them move my arm around so much to measure my mobility, it was very sore and hurting. The lady warned me that PT isn't going to be a walk in the park, it will be physical work and some of it will hurt. I told her, after what I've just been through, I think I can handle it. But yeah... more painkillers, please?

Oh and I have to do PT twice a week, which doesn't really thrill the parentals. See, I have no car, so if I go anywhere, they take me. When I have money I try to pay for gas, but right now I'm broke. And I could drive myself, but I'm not allowed to drive for a few more weeks. So I'm sure my dad will bitch about it. But this is only a 1 hr drive, not a 3 hour drive.

I wish there was a high speed train I could take to have my chemo stuff done. Then I wouldn't have any problems.

If I don't do the chemo, I want to be at peace with it. But I'm not at peace. Not right now. I'm scared. I don't know how to be at peace with it. Please send me some good juju, vibes, whatever, that this gets resolved one way or another. I just want to beat this cancer, I just want to do everything I can.

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