Thursday, January 14, 2010

Just a little good news, that's all I ever hope for. It's why, without fail, I do a mitzvah every day. Lately it's been made easy—the Publix across the street is collecting for the Special Olympics and the Haitian thing. I always give a dollar, even if I'm not flush. But today, whatever fighting spirit I had left in me has now grown wings and flown away from this toxic house.

I live by the principle of Karma. Yet for the past three years, you'd think—given my luck—that I walked around South Beach with an Uzi picking off people left and right.

I can't think of one really fabu bit of news I've received since the great gift that is Fucking Breast Cancer. No news, typically good news in medicine. So I waited for Schwartz to call me today. I was not medicated when I saw the "Mammo" pop up on caller ID. But I was already expecting not the 'best' news anyway. So I took it like a woman. And as I suspected, I am indeed a dead woman walking, running and yoga-ing.

The PET revealed a "mixed response." Translation: The nodes in the neck have shrunk (good). The nodes behind the sternum have grown (vvv bad news). Why? Schwartz and Norton think that the Tykerb is what's working and the chemo isn't. The full report tomorrow will reveal how much the sternum nodes have grown and how much the neck ones have shrunk; obv it'd be nice if the sternum nodes had only increased marginally, but I'm not holding my breath for anything anymore.

I know I've said this time and time again here, but I genuinely believe it now. This fucking thing is going to kill me. Soon. Like, I'm banking on being dead by 40. Let's look at the facts: None of the chemo I put my body through in 2008 even worked. Sure, maybe it kept the Cancer from spreading, but it didn't eradicate it. I was never really in remission. So, basically everything I've done, what I've been told to do, what is in all experts' opinions the best course of treatment has failed. Chemo failed. Mastectomy, meh. Herceptin was, in Schwartz' and Norton's opinion, the only thing that my fucking HER2NU Breast Ca really responded to. Herceptin and Her2NU are BFFs. I'd rather have Dana.

So, what now? Norton and Schwartz have decided to take me off the Xeloda (chemo); they don't think it was working at all and that is the drug that is causing my hands to hurt even while typing this. Monday, I go back on Herceptin infusions. Every three weeks, report to the chemo ward, get a needle stuck in my arm and sit hooked up to an IV while god knows what kind of chemicals are pumped into my eroding insides.

That study that I linked to last week, about Herceptin plus Tykerb, is what we're banking on. I go in on Monday for my first (second-round) infusion, take five Tykerb pills a day and in six weeks we will know just exactly how long I've got left on this very confusing planet we live on.

If this treatment doesn't work—why should I think it will, when none of the other stuff has—then they'll try to put me back on regular chemo. Which I will not do. Period. Even mom seems to have accepted the fact that I will, when push comes to shove, choose to die rather than live my life as a chronic Cancer Patient.

So yeah, great news in the life of your's truly as usual. And this isn't even taking into account the Ovarian Cancer risk factor that gives me an 80 percent chance of getting that. So, what, I'll be removing my ovaries while I'm being infused with Herceptin in the vain hope that removing them will eliminate the possibility of Cancer? Puh-fucking-lease. That's why I had the mastectomy and those crafty cells still found a way to re-enter my body.

Oftentimes, and I don't know if it's cause I'm a depressive to begin with, but I honestly feel like dying is easier than living out a future that I can not see any goodness in.

Sigh. I'm about to call Dr. Laura in Bev Hills for my phone therapy. After this news, I may just go from Fashion Week in New York to Los Angeles and just try to run the fuck away from what has become of my life.