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Spoiler alert:  There are no pics to accompany this post.  Not that kind of blog!

So it's Chemo Eve and I'm eagerly anticipating round three.  No really, I am!  You may be thinking I've completely lost it, and I would normally agree - but do hear me out and it will soon make sense.

Yesterday at my pre-chemo oncologist appointment, the doctor asked me if I'd noticed any changes in my affected breast, to which I laughingly replied, what breast?  It has been shrinking at such an alarming rate that there really isn't much left to speak of.  I'd hoped this was good news but wasn't really sure what it meant; what if the tumour was simply eating up all my good breast tissue?  We looked back at my MRI results and noted that the tumour size a month ago had been 6cm (W) x 7cm (H) x 4cm (D).  She did a quick examination.  Well, you didn't have to be an oncologist to see that it had shrunk considerably.  She turned to me and gleefully exclaimed, "I honestly can't tell what is normal breast tissue and what is tumour.  The tumour is nowhere near its original size.  This is very, very good news!". 

Now, I've met many a doctor in my time and I've NEVER seen one become giddy!  It was exhilarating! 

To make matters better, my oncologist also advised me that since I hadn't experienced any real nausea from the chemo, I could skip one of the two anti-nausea meds from now on.  The second med is a steroid and is harmful to my already osteopenic bones, so it is welcome news that I no longer have to take it.  No bones about it, this turned out to be my best oncologist appointment yet!   

After thanking her profusely, I proceeded to hit her up with a Q and A session (again, the Project Manager in me coming out, plan plan plan!):

Q - When will I have another MRI to determine effectiveness of chemo? 
A - Towards the end of treatment (September)

Q- Will I definitely require surgery or will it depend on how chemo goes?
A- You will definitely require surgery as chemo alone doesn't kill cancer.  You will also need radiation therapy after that (I was already aware of this and have met my radiation oncologist)

Q- I'm feeling energetic a lot of the time and would like to exercise.  Is this ok, and are there any restrictions?
A- Do whatever you feel up to and whatever makes you feel good.  Around the home, invest your energy in playing with your kids, taking them to the park, etc, but no cooking or housework <wink>  (I'd hoped she was serious and wanted to request this in writing,  then remembered my husband does all of our cooking and housework anyway!)

Blessings Report:

Grinning ear to ear leaving the hospital after my June 5th oncologist appointment.  Chemo is WORKING!

Celebrating Imogen turning 3 months old today.  She is thriving, and brings me so much joy and inspiration.  My 4-yr-old said to me (with much conviction), "I will name her "Strong Girl!".  Very fitting.  She is definitely the viking of the family.

Getting the ok to have my chemo at the much quieter Queensway-Carleton Hospital.  And a dear friend accompanying me tomorrow!

Being on maternity leave during UEFA EURO 2012 madness...força Portugal!

and finally,

An already small-chested woman being ecstatic over losing a bra size.

Rest assured, everyone.  I'm AA ok!


  1. Yippppeeeeeeee! I love all the good news Ellen! Thinking about you every day from the west coast.

  2. Oh Ellen, I'm so happy to hear how well you are doing. Will be thinking of you while you're at your appointment again today.

    You are truly inspirational.

  3. hi Ellen - I'll say a prayer for you tomorrow - so SO happy to hear of this good news! your positive attitude is contagious. lots of love and hugs and kisses! - Auramarina


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