Chemotherapy, round one [+Video]

March 1, 2012 · 22 comments

Jake in the chemo room

Click here to view the above image on flickr at full size.

As I mentioned yesterday, the cardiologist and oncologist both agreed that my heart was healthy enough to begin treatment, so I had my first round of chemotherapy today.

Moving forward, I will have chemo every other Thursday for a total of four to six months (or eight to twelve actual treatments). The number of treatments will depend on how well my body responds to the drugs, if there are any health-related hiccups, and how much the cancer shrinks throughout the duration.

If for some reason you can’t see the video below, click here to watch it on YouTube.

You can kind of tell from the video that the chemo itself wasn’t to bad at all. I fell asleep toward the end, which was probably a combination of the drugs and just being tired in general. Additionally, the nurses and staff were very, very friendly and helpful, which Libby and I are extremely thankful for and which made the experience practically palatable.

Next Monday I’m having a port installed, so all future blood tests and chemo IV drips, etc. can be done from the port instead of a bunch of random IV insertions in my hands and arms. I’m not really enthusiastic about having it in my chest, but I’m confident that the benefits of having one will outweigh my general wussiness and vague belonephobia.

The next “unknown” is how, when, and if, my body will will react to the chemo drugs. I could be fine for a few days and then have to pack it in for a day or two; I could be really bad tomorrow and then fine for the next two weeks. It’s hard to predict how any particular patient will react during the so-called “chemo hangover,” so we’ll just have to wait and see.

Thanks for your continued love, prayers, and support. Let’s keep on doin’ this.

  • Shawn Kennedy

    Bro- you’re gonna have to help me out with belonephobia. If you keep using big word like that, I may need to invest in “jakebouma.com for dummies”. My first inclination is “the fear of bologna” but not sure how that applies.

    Cheers to being through round 1!

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      Hahaha… Fear of needles, bro. And thank you!

  • Mike Stavlund

    I’m sitting here in tears, aghast.  Damn proud to know you, Jake.

    On another note, I’m starting to think Libby is some kind of robot or something.  Can anyone be that awesome all of the time? 

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      She probably *is* a robot. A very cute, lovable robot.

      Thanks for your kind words, Mike.

    • Libbybouma

      Mike you are too kind. Love, simply love. 

  • Debbie Cisneros

    The Love you two have will get you through this !You are so amazing and as always much much love and continued daily prayers .Love you both :)Awesome
    is yes What you two are ~now kick cancers ASS!

  • Christina Vanderbeek

    Libby, you inspire me! You are such a strong woman! My church friends and I are praying for both of you! Thanks for keeping us so informed on how you are doing. I check all the time to see how you two are doing. Sending you my love and prayers!!!!

  • Miranda Kurtt

    Jake and Libby, you have brought me to tears (not hard, I know). Your attitude is so wonderful and it is refreshing to see your humor. This last 6 months has shown me that humor can get you though a lot.  I wish we would have taped some of my sister’s “craziness” when she was going through so much.  Keep each other smiling and laughing and this will all be over before you know it! Love you two!

  • http://theoldadam.wordpress.com/ Steve Martin

    God bless you, Jake.

    I’ll be praying for you.

    (I’m new here – in cse you’re wondering who the heck I am)

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      Welcome, Steve. Thanks for following along and for your prayers.

  • Jeff Bozeman

    nice ejection fraction dude

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      Thanks, bro. It’s a gift.

  • Michelle Devitt

    Love you Jake and Libby! One down! Let’s do this!! xoxo

  • Becky Bryant

    Thanks, Jake and Libby, for showing us your vulnerability and your courage.  You’re constantly in our prayers.  We love you!

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      Thanks, Becky!

  • http://dbartosik.com/ David Bartosik

    crazy dude- found your blog by following a post link from mattcleaver on  interns and blown away by your willingness to share this journey with everyone- pray for ya and that this is an opperuntity for people to see Christ through your life!

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      Thanks, David… me too. Small world, huh?

  • Revprplak

    Jake, I’m finally (back?) up to speed on entering the information age! Trust things went well. Look forward to seeing you tomorrow (chemo hangover allowing). As always, thoughts and prayers are with Libby and you. I know, also, you’re on the prayer list at my home church with Ritva (St Stephen in CR). 
    Lyle 

    • http://www.jakebouma.com Jake Bouma

      Thanks, Lyle.

  • http://www.facebook.com/andrea.hoeksema Andrea Tigges

    from a nurse’s perspective, I think you LOVE having the port. In most people, you can’t even tell it’s there. And it makes caring for patients soooo much easier because you don’t have to poke them over and over.  Sending prayers your way!

  • Fred Lennon

    Kick some butt Jake and hang in there!

  • Anna Bergdall

    Jake, you are so great. You are super pro at making the best of a hard situation. I can tell it is well with your soul, my friend :) Also, holy moly you and your wife are such a great team! You’re inspiring so many people, thanks for documenting and sharing so much. I’ll strum a few nice songs on your old Ibanez in your honor :)