The results are in (of the kidney scan) and they are good. It seems that the kidney is working well again, and my recent blood tests are all as normal as I am ever going to get. The extra special good news is that the kidney stones that were detected by the ultra sound scan on 8th May have rolled away and 'passed' into history! I know that I have not been getting the same kind of pain in my left kidney area for the last two or three weeks, so the pains must have been the parting of the ways. Good thing that they were so small (6mm max) and so could find their way out without any help. When I was 12 I had kidney stones removed in a major operation (40 years ago) which left me with a huge scar. Then the largest stone was the size of a sixpence piece, which is about 1.5cm across, which for a twelve year old is huge.
So today has been a good day...even better they had forgotten to schedule my treatment today as the message was not passed on by the person who booked the appointment with the oncologist, as it has to be done on another screen. Anyway, normally this would have been a disaster and involved waiting around to see if they could fit me in, but it seems I can now have the treatments at Oakhaven Hospice in the town where I live, so I will be popping along at 2.30 tomorrow afternoon for the Zoledronic Acid iv treatment. For those of you not familiar with the delights of bone metastases treatment this is a bisphosphonate to strengthen the bones that are being attacked by the cancer. It was first developed to treat osteoporosis but it has shown to be very affective in treating breast cancer bone mets. I have been having this iv treatment nearly every four weeks since February 2008, and so far it has been helping to keep things under control. For me it has had very few side effects, except for the first few infusions which made me very achy, but now I can tolerate it at full speed which means that it can be given in about 15 minutes.
So far with the different treatments I have had I have been able to tolerate them very well. I think this is partly because I have always tried to think of the treatments as a positive thing which is helping my body deal with the cancer. I always make sure I drink about one and a half litres of water to help flush out my system, and I have been drinking a lot of water recently, which probably helped with the kidney problem.
I use visualisation and meditative music to help me accept the treatment into my body and focus it on the parts of my body that needs it the most. I think if you can stay relaxed it is easier to absorb the medication into your body. If you resist it, and you think you are going to be sick and have a bad reaction inevitably you will. I remember sitting in the treatment room at the hospital and a young woman next to me was having her second chemo treatment and I could see the tension and resistence in her body. I left soon after they started so I don't know what her reaction was, but to me she was already convinced that she was going to be ill before they had even started to administer it.
I tend to visualise my cancer cells as bubbles that are being burst by my T-cells, which look like a sword - pop, pop, pop! But it is late and I must get to bed, so I will continue with this theme at a later date. I didn't have a good night last night as my kidneys have gone into overdrive so I had to get up five times in the night, then I got really bad hiccups about one o'clock in the morning which went on for well over half an hour, by which time I was wide awake! Then I managed to knock the setting on my alarm clock and ended up hauling myself out of bed an hour early! I couldn't believe it! I thought the battery in my clock in the kitchen has run out, but it was actually telling the right time!
...and so to bed...