Cancer Day 41 / IVF Day 2: Chemo & Ports

So so tired from today. My oncologist was running 45 minutes over on her appointments so we sat there for years waiting to see her. As we did I saw this girl my age. I keep seeing her around the place. She’s there every time I am. Wears a wig and is having radiotherapy. Elliott didn’t notice she was wearing a wig, but I can tell now. I can tell from a mile away whereas before I never noticed.
We also saw another lady who looked healthy and well. She went in right before I did and our doctor exclaimed at how much hair she had and was impressed. It was nice to see someone looking so well who had obviously gone through what I’m about to. I have been thinking about her the rest of the day.
We had prepared lots of questions for my oncologist but were only able to get through some of them.

Question 1.
Why is it that she was recommending the AC chemo that is every 2 weeks for 8 sessions vs FEC which is every 3 weeks for 6 sessions.

Answer 1:
The ‘C’ in both AC and FEC is the drug that could damage my ovaries the most. So a very very long story short, we are going to see how many fertilised embryos we end up with and then make a decision on which course of chemo to go through. She did confirm that there is a drug I’ll get from my GP that will actually shut my ovaries off during chemo so I won’t be getting periods for the next few months (bonus!)

Question 2:
Will I need a port installed?

Answer 2:
I’m only able to use my right arm for blood draws etc. because of having nodes taken out of my left armpit. Apparently the chemicals in the chemotherapy drugs will harden my veins, making each one that they use more difficult to get meds into. Having an implantable port will allow easier access straight into a vein which will then be easier to administer the drugs without the need to damage my veins.

Question 3:
Why would we have to wait 2 years after the end of chemo to start trying to have another baby?

Answer 3:
To give my body a break. That when you’re pregnant your immune system takes a hit and if there are any rogue cancer cells floating around that haven’t been zapped by the chemo then it could give them a chance to grow.

Question 4:
If the cancer was going to come back, then how would we know?

Answer 4:
Anytime you’d feel bad or have a pain that would last longer than normal, we’d do a scan, or a blood test and make sure.

Then after our Q&A session we met a lovely nurse named Dawn who gave me the name of a wig lady that other cancer patients use and she spoke to us about childcare options for Evie.

We had loads of other questions, but as you can see even these we have lots to process.

Then this afternoon we had our first ultrasound from being on the IVF drugs. They just wanted to check that things were moving along. Our next ultrasound is Friday to see how many of the follicles are responding to the drugs. We’re really hoping that this works because we won’t be able to wait to start chemo. The peace of mind that having frozen embryos would bring. I just don’t have the words for it. I shake thinking about how happy I’d be knowing the future of our family would be preserved.

Feeling: Exhausted