Well, it's official. I am DONE with radiation and am CANCER FREE! I am so excited, I cried tears of joy all the way home from the hospital today.
Dr. I came in after my radiation today to check on my skin, and he took one look and said, "Wow....that looks....painful. Wow..." It's always comforting when the people who are used to seeing this stuff are a little amazed at the extent of the burns! So, I'm missing a lot of skin, and to be honest, it's pretty painful, but it's all ok, because I AM DONE! I'll keep burning for a little while, then my skin will start to heal. It should be less painful in about a week, and probably start looking at least a little better in two.
So, what now? Well, several of you have asked that, and have also asked if there's any scans that I go through, or things like that. So, let me explain. First, there aren't any scans, because any cancer that could have been picked up on scans was surgically cut out before any of this ever started. So, at the end of my treatment (TODAY!!!), I am considered cancer-free! The past months of radiation and chemo have been to ensure that all the cancer has been removed at the cell-level. So, I am done with cancer!
Now, for what comes next....well, first, we party!(Check out the link if you haven't seen the e-vite yet!) Then, I'll keep going to my radiologist every now and then until my skin heals. My next appointment with Dr. I is in 7 weeks. I'll also start Tamoxifen, which is drug that helps control....something related to cancer....which I'll take for 5 years (note: the horrible job I do of explaining things should not be blamed on my doctors. They honestly do a great job of explaining, I just forget a lot of this stuff, and I can't find my notes!). I'll keep seeing my oncologist every 3 months for awhile to monitor any side effects I experience with that drug. And, finally, at some point, I'll go back to my surgeon, Dr. K, to get my port removed. That will probably happen later this fall, when I've recovered a little more from everything else I've had done. So, I still have more stuff to do, but the cancer is GONE!
I think it will probably hit me more fully later, but for right now, I am just incredibly grateful to God for allowing the treatments to be successful, and incredibly happy to be done and cancer free!