Part 6: Losing It
So, last time we spoke I was telling you all about IVF. That is all done and dusted now. Thank goodness.
I did a week of 3 injections daily (thanks again for helping Simon!), a few scans, which cut our Easter trip back to Mildura down from 4 days to 2 days, and had my quick operation to successfully harvest the eggs. In case you were wondering, they got 24. That’s two dozen eggs hehe.
Anyone who has more than 20 eggs is at risk of Ovarian hyper stimulation (OHSS) A condition where women over-respond to the fertility drugs and can develop severe fluid retention and abdominal swelling and potential hospitalisation (no thanks). To combat this, I am now on a further 2 weeks of injections (a blood thinner) to prevent this from happening.
The Big Chop
As week 3 was quickly approaching I wanted to own the hair falling out situation and booked in to get the big chop with my gal Chloe. Scarlett Johansson was the look we were going for and she pretty much nailed it. Surprisingly I was really ok with cutting all my hair off. I guess when you know its going to happen anyway it can lessen the blow.
Here are some progress shots from the day:
Haircut Before & After
The day after my day surgery I was feeling really nauseous and in a lot of pain. every time I sat down to go to the toilet it felt like someone was stabbing me from the inside. I tried taking panadol at 4 am but threw it up straight away.
And that morning, right on schedule, I ran my hands through my hair and a clump fell out. I threw it into the shower like a hot potato where Simon was and started to freak out. I was feeling terrible and my hair was falling out and we had to leave for my radiation appointment. I couldn’t take it anymore. Tears were streaming. ?
After my appointment, the nurses kindly called the doctor to come and see me. I had a magic dissolving pill that gets rid of nausea (the same one from the seizure night) and could finally stomach the panadol. All was right in the world again.
At the time of posting this, here is my hair loss so far.
As this post is a little shorter, I thought I would include some helpful hints on what NOT to say to someone who is going through Cancer or any illness:
You are so strong/brave
Thanks, but I am just doing what I have to, taking each day at a time. Breast cancer survivor Jenn McRobbie and author of Why Is She Acting So Weird? A Guide to Cultivating Closeness When A Friend is In Crisis. “We’re called ‘fighters,’ ‘warriors,’ and we’re told to ‘win the battle.’ This imagery may help some people feel more in control of their experience, but it can also make you feel like you’re doing it all wrong if you’re having a bad day.” Having others tell you “you’re so strong,” she explains, can sometimes make you feel like you can’t or shouldn’t show any vulnerability—that if you do, you’re weak or you might lose the battle.
If I am having a bad day, I am having a bad day. I am allowed to, end of story. Telling someone to stay positive can make them feel guilty for not feeling upbeat while struggling with a disease.
Please let us know what we can do to help
What we don’t need is pressure to think of something that you can do to help. If you want to make a meal and bring it over, then do it! That would be lovely. I had a friend come over and tell me she was going to do my nails, it was lovely and I felt great.
Don’t say nothing
It’s hard to know what to say when someone is diagnosed with cancer or going through something shitty. But trust me, it’s better to say something than nothing at all. I am still me, I still want to talk.
You look so good! (in a shocked tone)
Everyone expects you to look sick, that’s how people look in the movies. In the early stages before undergoing any treatment you are still (mostly) going to be the same as pre-diagnosis days.