Six weeks is a long time. My treatment started on a Wednesday, so we left home Tuesday to go settle in to our hotel. Originally we stayed at the Homestead Inn and Suites in Research Triangle, but that didn't work out because it was disgusting. It was nice to have a kitchenette with a stove and a full fridge, but the rooms were dirty and cigarette smoke poured into our non-smoking room from the adjacent smoking rooms. Even the air conditioner, when we turned it on, sent nasty smells wafting. I tried to buck up about it, and we stayed for about two weeks, but when our kids came to visit the third week, we switched to the La Quinta. We didn't have a freezer anymore, which sucked, but I had gotten so depressed about being in the room at Homestead that to improve my mood it was worth it. Duke does have a place called Caring House that's kind of like a Ronald McDonald house for grown ups, but children aren't allowed and I'm not into the whole "Cancer Mentality", which I'll talk about tomorrow, so it wasn't for us, but it's a great option.
Treatment actually only takes about 10 minutes. That meant that I spent most of my time sitting in our room while Austin telecommuted. I read, I watched TV, I napped, and I eavesdropped on his work meetings because I was bored. He was really good about taking me places to get me out when he was done working, though. We went on walks and out for ice cream and it was manageable.
|You can walk to the Sarah Duke Botanic Gardens from the Cancer Center. It's beautiful and you can get WiFi if your spouse needs to work while you enjoy a bench.|
|My friend Gaby came up to see me week two and brought her adorable girls. They made my heart happy.|
|We hit a Durham Bulls game, the Science Museum in Raleigh, the Children's Museum, UNC Chapel Hill, the Lemur Center, and of course the hotel pool when the kids came. There's lots to do with families in Durham/Raleigh/Chapel Hill.|
My only other big side effect was that around the end of week 4/beginning of week 5 my hair started falling out in the radiation pattern. It drove me nuts because I'd grown back about an inch of hair, which was just enough to fall down my shirt or stick on me in the shower. Luckily, the Wahl Clippers and I fixed that up. I have cute hats, I don't need hair. Also, I have hoop earrings, and scarves. That whole "look in the mirror and remove one accessory" thing doesn't count when you're bald. You can have as many pieces of flair as you want.