"Don't spend time worrying about how you are going to die. Worry about how you are going to live today"

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Officially completed 25% of my chemo

Today was my first chemo session.  I was stressed trying to get up and get my 4 year old off to school this morning and get to my appointment on time at 8am.  Of course my son was in rare form and was having typical 4 year old meltdowns all morning.  Nothing like starting your first day of chemo with that, but that's part of being a mommy I guess. I quickly wolfed down some wheat toast, my vitamins and a few large glasses of water (water is important around chemo time to flush the chemo out of the body and reduce side effects).  I then took an Ativan right before we left to calm me for the cold caps. 

Once we got our son off to school, my husband and I headed to the cancer center with all of our hair saving products and food for the day.  My friend Shari who was joining us to help today was there when we arrived.  I am so lucky to have her as a good friend!   She is always there for me.  We were there by 8am and I had my regular blood work.  We then met with the doctor and reviewed any other questions and concerns.  By 8:45am I was putting on my first cold cap.  It was COLD to say the least, but in a few minutes it did not really bother me at all.  We changed the first two caps after 20 minutes each and then the third cap went on for 30 minutes.  Ten minutes into the 3rd cap the nurse started the chemo.  At that point since the first drug administered was taxotere, I was also icing my fingers, toes and had ice in my mouth all while wearing the cold caps.  That was the hour and a half that was the coldest to me.  The ice on my feet was the worst.  It bothered me way more than the caps on my head.  We continued to change the caps every 30 minutes for the rest of the day. 

We went through 14 caps in all and got done around 4:45pm.  It was a long day in some ways, but I thought it went by way easier and faster than I ever anticipated.  My husband and friend were diligent about getting the caps on just perfect and had a routine down by the 3rd cap.  They took care of my every need, feeding me ice, taking me to the bathroom and tucking me under the electric blanket after each cap change.  It was a good day.  I packed a fabulous healthy picnic lunch for us along with snacks and beverages.  We all had a good day talking and laughing and enjoying spending time together.  I never felt like I was there for cancer.  It was a good distraction having the caps and good company.

After today I know I can do this three more times. No question in my mind.  If anyone out there is thinking about doing the cold caps, it is completely doable!  Don't be afraid.  If I can do it, so can you!  Now I wait to see how my body handles the drugs and the cold caps.  The hair usually starts falling out from my chemo regimen between days 14 and 21.  Now I just wait and see what happens.  The next few weeks will be long.  I hope I have good success.  Until then I will baby my hair and follow all the instructions for good hair care while using the cold caps that I was given, and hope for the best.   Just what I love, more waiting............


  1. I've been reading your posts for inspiration through chemo and the cold caps. I wanted to know what aveda products you used during treatment to style your hair. With Christmas coming up, I'm trying to get some ideas. Thank you very much!

  2. I used Aveda Be Curly sometimes on my hair. I avoided putting it on the roots. It was hard to find a great hair style through chemo with the caps, but since I was not using the hair dryer much, I scrunched hair and let it go wavy. Good luck with the caps and chemo! Saying a prayer for you tonight Shawna!