Radiation Begins

Hey everyone!  Some of my friends have been asking about how I'm doing, so I thought I would share a bit of an update.  The final phase of my treatment began last Tuesday.....Radiation Therapy.  The week prior, I had a Radiation Simulation, where "mapping and marking" were done to come up with a "Radiation Plan" that was fitted to my body.  No kidding, my upper right chest, from just below my neck to my waist, looks like "varicose veins".....red, black and purple markings covered with water-risistent tape.  I have to be careful when I shower, no scrubbing.

All of that bright light on my face is from the glorious Arizona sun shining in through the wall of windows in the Radiation waiting area.

This boxy little number on my boxy little body is the latest in radiation attire.  Velcro tabs all the way down the front, make it easy for my radiation therapists, Kaleb & Justin, to expose my "lady bits."  Early on, this might have been embarrassing, but so many "professionals" have viewed my lady bits at this point, I truly don't care.

This is the radiation room and machine that I have each time.  The therapists remain the same as well.  The always have a little step-stool for me to get on the table....I'm short!

The machine is pretty awesome.  The table and machine both move and rotate to get me all lined up with the mapping on my body.  Total time that radiation is actually coursing through my body is less than a minute total, and that's from 3 different locations.

I've become quite good at napping just about anywhere, but I'm not gonna fall asleep on this!  Part of my simulation involved this large gray bag-type thing, that once I was in position, was filled with air that formed a mold of my body.  It's rigid and is covered by the sheet above.  The form is a major part of getting me in the exact right position each time.  It has a label with all of my pertinent ID, & hangs with many others across the back wall of this room.

Four treatments down and 16 to go!  Then I will follow many, many others who have taken this journey.  The ringing of this bell is a tradition, and I am really looking forward to my day.

I truly wish all of you who have been such great cheerleaders for me from my first chemo, through my surgery, and now on to this final phase, could be with me when it's my turn to ring the bell.  I would love to hug you all!

I expect March 21st to be a very emotional day.

I hope this is a wonderful week for everyone!
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