Session two of paclitaxel also passed without my experiencing any adverse reactions, but in some ways I found it harder to cope with this time. At one stage I felt close to tears as I contemplated the weekly trips to the oncology day stay unit that lay ahead, the insertion of the needle that sometimes goes smoothly and without any fuss and sometimes doesn’t, and all the other activities such as weekly blood tests and three weekly trips to the oncology clinic that being back on chemotherapy involves.
It didn’t help that the unit seemed really busy and/or short staffed, everything took longer than last week, and there were delays between the various processes. It was quite crowded when I arrived, the insertion of the needle was prolonged and has left a bruise, there was no privacy which became extremely disconcerting at various times, and I felt utterly exhausted by the time I left nearly four hours later.
Next week there will be no need to begin with a slow testing of the infusion with paclitaxel so it should be much quicker. I asked my ex-husband to explain to me again (he had done this last week but I had forgotten what he said) how this drug worked as it is different to the four PEXG drugs I had earlier in the year. I find it helpful knowing how the drug is working to prevent the growth of the tumours.
As I did not have any severe side effects during the week in the lead up to the second session I am not expecting any this week either. But time will tell, and this time I will be paying much closer attention to any signs that my body is telling me “enough already.”