Sunday, April 6, 2014

"Wooters' Hooters" or "That time when my boob went to Florida without me"

I took another little detour from life recently, thanks to the wonders of modern medicine. For three weeks, no matter the weather, (and there WAS weather,) I faithfully showed up at the Lipson Cancer Center every morning at 8:15 for radiation treatment.

Let me tell you, it's all fun and games at the radiation department. You get to get tattoos, get naked, (well, partially,) and chill out to some pretty radical light shows. I was affectionately know as "Woot" by Sam, Paul & Amanda, the radiation technicians. They were quick to tell me I had "the best name, EVER!" I'm guessing it tickled their fancy to say they were treating Wooters' Hooters.

Anyway, I'd lay down on the table, put my arms above my head, and after lining things up with my new tattoos, they'd start drawing circles and X's on my boob with a sharpie to show where to shoot those ray beams. After they were done, they'd scurry out of the room and I'd lay perfectly still while the monster machine rotated around me and zapped the hell out of my boob.  

Basically easy and painless. No side effects other than a bit of fatigue, so I continued working full-time throughout the treatments.  

About a week after I "graduated" my boob began to get tender and change color, just as the doctor told me it would. Yes, my cancer boob started to look like it went to Florida without me. I slathered it with aloe vera lotion which helped a bit.  Next it got all raw and wearing a bra became impossible. Once that phase was over, I developed thick, dark, leathery skin all around the nipple and things started to itch.  Good times.

Now things are pretty much back to normal. For the time being anyway. Next up on the schedule... anti-estrogen meds for the next five years. Common side effects from those... same as menopause symptoms, particularly hot flashes. Been there, done that so I know what it feels like. It will seem like Florida in August all over again. Oh joy, oh rapture.

So look out world... my inner bitch is ready to rock and roll!

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