Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Back to School - Finally...

Hey Guys!

Sorry it's been a little while since I posted - I had treatment on Monday and FINALLY got back to school today!

Monday's treatment went really smoothly - I didn't have to stay in a tiny infusion room like last time (although this time I wouldn't have minded - the treatment was only about an hour and a half, so I was basically only in Day Hosp. for three hours at the most!) My nurse was really fast, which made it soooo much easier - she came quickly when I buzzed for my med changes, and you wouldn't believe how much time builds up when you're just waiting for the nurse to get there to change the drugs!

Knock on wood, I've been feeling a lot better this round following my day 8 treatment than usual. I've basically got the nausea under control (thank GOD, since now I actually have to go to class & I can't spend all day sleeping because I'm feeling sick!) Everything tastes pretty crappy, though - I always forget how BAD the chemo makes my mouth taste for about a week or so after this treatment. I know I've mentioned it before, but just for a recap - sweet things taste like they're made with artificial sweetener (blegh) and everything else tastes fuzzy and sour. Except plain water, which is just not good. Even filtered water kind of tastes a little bit sewer-y (which I'm 99% sure is the chemo because normally we have pretty great water in Cincinnati... unlike my apartment in Berea!)

In the week or so before classes started, I decided to do some experimenting with my newly rediscovered crocheting skills and set about making some hats. My first attempt(s) were abysmal and actually pretty funny, but after a couple trial-and errors, I was able to make a couple that actually turned out pretty good!

This is my first successful attempt - you can't really tell, but the yarn I used is mostly a deep purple with some navy and teal running through it. It's SUPER silky, and I think it'll look really nice with the celery-colored pashmina scarf I have from Florence two summers ago, and also with the pink pea coat I found when I was cleaning out my closet (I don't even know when it's from! Middle school? Early high school? It's cute!)

This second one I made with yarn that I had originally bought to make a scarf for my mom - it's pinks and grays and some lavender, and the yarn is REALLY knobbly. I got the same kind of yarn in black, white, and gray also (I was going to make coordinating scarves for my parents) and tried to make a scarf for my dad out of it. However, I didn't buy nearly enough yarn of each color AND the knobbly-ness proved to be extremely hard to make an even scarf out of. So I ended up having to scrap the scarf for my dad, and used the pink yarn for my hat experiments. I think it turned out pretty well! It kind of looks like a bathing cap - my mom says I should crochet some little flowers to attach to the front, so that's probably going to be my next in-hospital crocheting adventure!

Also, check out my neck reallllly closely - you can barely even see my scar anymore! Woohoo! I've been putting lotion on it basically every day to make sure that it doesn't get too tight or itchy, but I'm pretty sure that the fact that my surgeon GLUED me back together has had a lot to do with the fact that it's healed so well and SO quickly! When I wear necklaces, you can't even tell it's there. And even when I'm not wearing one, you can really only see it if you're looking. It's not red or angry looking or anything.

In addition, I'm happy to report that I STILL have a full face of eyebrows and eyelashes, which THRILLS me! Of course, I'd be more than happy to wear crazy falsies everyday, but since I still have my eyebrows and eyelashes, people still think that I shaved my head on purpose. Since I'm starting at a new school, I'm pretty thrilled not to have that "cancer" look.

I'm heading out for some dinner, but I'm happy I was FINALLY able to stop back and get a post up. I really need to start doing this more regularly again!

Lots of Love,

ps to Jacinta - I posted a reply to the comment you left on my post from Aug. 27. I wasn't sure if blogger would alert you to a reply, so I wanted to let you know! Please feel MORE than free to ask any questions you'd like!

pps as a general note, if you guys ever ask me questions in comments, I'll definitely reply to them under the comment section. Blogger doesn't give access to email addresses, so if you've asked anything, always check back in the following days to see if I've posted a reply!


  1. Hello!! Welcome back to blogging! Have to say that I'm really happy for you that you aren't getting that sick anymore!

    Those hats look really cute! I could only make a scarf with crocheting haha. Keep it up they look really nice!

  2. Cute hats! I just wanted to let you know that the hair fell out of my head twice but I never lost my eyebrows or lashes. I lost every damn pube (sorry if that's TMI) but I still had to shave my legs!

    Anyway, the point of the comment is that you may be able to keep your brows and lashes.

  3. I recently came across your blog and I'm so happy that I did! While I do not have cancer I was recently diagnosed with a blood condition called essential thromboycithemia (high platelets) which puts me at risk for a lot of not so great things, one being AML. I am thankful to be able to read you and get a bit of insight into the world of cancer/chemo incase I find myself going down the same road one day.

  4. The crocheted hats are great! You look like a hip college student. I started wearing a lot of hats with brims instead of all the turbans I bought (and received as gifts) when first diagnosed. The turbans just seem like nursing home wear. I lost my hair twice but always kept my lashes & brows! I go out with my crew cut now & pretend it is cutting edge fashion.

  5. coming to make a runitas blogging every day

  6. gurl just keep the spirit on!!! :)

  7. Hi Lauren,
    Thanks for your response in the posting, I wouldn't have known to go back into the comments to find your response. Try as I might, I still couldn't find it. I couldn't find a post of your son 27 August, so not sure where I should have been looking. I don't alerted to your replies, still new to this technology. Could you forward me an email addy where I can contact you?
    My sis has her PET scan this Wednesday. She's worried she's stage 4 as she has fibrosis in her bone marrow in her spine - that's how we found out she had lymphoma. Not sure of the connection yet.
    Would love to 'chat' with you.

  8. @Jacinta - I'm so sorry! I got the date wrong in my response to you (it was actually the 21, but I misread it in my archive! You can email me at

    good luck to your sister on Wednesday - the PET is long, but it's definitely the best way to find lymphoma (finding Hodgkin's is actually what it was developed for!)

    I know you're probably really scared, but even high stage Hodgkin's has a VERY good response rate to the treatments they have now. I look forward to being able to talk with you!


  9. Hi Lauren,
    Thanks for your email, as you know, I did find it.
    I have sent you another long email with some pics of me and my sis. I hope you got it.
    Her appointment for her PET is in an hour. I hope she is okay. She'll be with her husband, so I'm happy about that.
    I did tell her that cure rate was still really high even if it's advanced. I reckon she'll be a stage 3 or 4 based on previous MRI's and CT scans. She may end up having to harvest eggs to give her peace of mind about the future - that will take another couple of weeks.
    I'll let you know how she goes today. Results will be in tomorrow.
    Thanks for your time, I really appreciate it Lauren,