Steroid nostalgia

Credit: Wellcome Images, on Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons

I’m glad to be rid of them. Really I am. It’s another step towards wellness. I’ve been sleeping so well at night, we almost all overslept this morning, waking at close to 8.

But they are making their absence known. I’m – as you may have noticed – a less prolific writer than I was. Also, I woke up yesterday morning with a pain in my wrist as though I’d broken it, or slept on it wrong. By today, it was even worse. I called my primary doctor, but she wasn’t going to be able to fit me in before I needed to pick up the kids from school. I considered going to urgent care, but that threatened to eat up my day. A day to spend in pain, granted, but a day all the same, not to be wasted in pursuit of healthcare.

I went to the gym and managed to get through class with no pain, except when putting away my equipment. I even managed to do fifty squat jumps over a Bosu ball, something I certainly hadn’t tried since my little brain problem showed up. And it was fine! I didn’t fall over!

After gym class, I placed a call to Dr P’s office to consult with Nurse Practitioner R about my predicament. I figured it might be related to the steroids. When she called back, she confirmed my suspicion. The steroids were anti-inflammatory and therefore masking the joint pain that can be a hallmark side effect of dabrafenib.  I’m glad I called, as always. And glad I looked up the list of side effects once again, because I’ve been experiencing hair loss too. I have very thick hair, so it’s noticeable only to myself. I hope I’ll get to avoid the other symptoms, but at least now I am prepared. Thickening of the skin can also be a side effect, as I discovered at the podiatrist the other day, when he shaved off about three inches of calluses from the balls of my feet.

The highlight of my day, though, was the arrival of cousin R in town. We see each other usually once a year, because she lives in North Carolina. But she wasn’t at Thanksgiving last year. We’ve bonded lately over illness and science dorkdom (although she is actually studying for a degree in biology, where I am a mere dilettante in oncology). Also, what she has been through medically in her young life (she is 24) kind of makes me feel like a dilettante too – she had a kidney transplant at age 13. She’s a tremendously accomplished and smart person and I’m so excited to see what her next move is. Go R!

I’m back in the doldrums again now though, heating pad wrapped around my bum wrist, while J makes dinner before going to play basketball. (The kids won’t get baths tonight, by executive order of Mama.)

One thought on “Steroid nostalgia

  1. The prolific writer is in you. It is just recuperating from exhaustion from non-stop writing. Give it the break it needs. It will come back when it needs to, steroids or no steroids.


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