On Friday morning following my Wednesday chemo, I go back to the infusion clinic and receive my Neulasta injection. According to the manufacturer's website, Neulasta helps support "your natural defenses" during chemo. It is a white blood cell booster that is intended to help your body fight off infection. Side effects include bone and joint pain.
All I can tell you is that right after I get my Neulasta injection, I feel like I have been run over by a very big truck. The first time around, I had some bone pain that wasn't too bad. I took Aleve and it went away. But now that I have had four rounds of chemo, my body must be weaker and the side effects from Neulasta are stronger. I get the worst body aches and chills and just basically feel like I have the flu for about 48 hours.
So yeah -- this is a whiney blog post today. I felt horrible yesterday and stayed in bed until 3 PM. Most of my pain is in my lower back and thighs. My kidneys are really sore. I hate to sound like a baby, but once you have cancer, you wonder if every little ache and pain is related.
One thing I know for sure -- as soon as I am done with chemo and Neulasta, I need to heal my body through more holistic and natural means. I can already tell that I am going to have a lot of "repair" work to do after this experience. And then there is the radiation treatment and five years of tamoxifen or aromatase inhibitors.
For now my goals are simple. Get through this phase as best as I can. Drink lots of water, stay hydrated and flush this crap out of my body. Get plenty of rest (no problems there!). Start a walking routine. Meditate. Maybe do some gentle stretching/yoga at home. I am not sure that I can manage a regular yoga class. I get tired very quickly. Eat well.
I am almost there. I can see the chemo finish line...