The Peachfuzz Chronicles

June 18, 2011

Better Living Through Pharmacology

Filed under: Uncategorized — by thepluckygastronome @ 12:31 pm

Living with cancer requires that you made significant modifications to your daily living style.  Around here, it’s been out with the old and in with the new.

Today, I had to clear a path on my dresser and pack up all the frilly girly-girl stuff to make way for the (bum-bum bum)…  Pill bottles.

My oncology nurse phoned the scripts

Just a few of the pill bottles needed in ones' cancer arsenal. How will I ever keep track of it all?!!

in to my local pharmacy. When we first met, “Nancy G” gave me the run down on what to expect, handed me the master drug list and her business card with direct phone number. I like her–alot. She has been through this cancer rodeo herself and gave me lots of tips.  “Our philosophy here,” she said, “is better living through the wonders of pharmacology.”  So she ordered me up a pill for every possible symptom I could experience as I headed for my first chemo treatment.

A couple of days before the first C-Day treatment, I had Jim go down to the local pharmacy for the big pick up. He arrived home with a bag. It was a BIG bag.  The BIG bag looks a little BIG. Perhaps a tad overwhelming.

As I pulled out bottle after bottle, I matched it up with my master list. I broke out into a sweat with each bottle and foil pack that emerged from the bag. “How will I ever keep track of all of this!”  I ruminated.

And there it was…  a leftover bottle.  The contents did not match any of the drugs on Nancy G’s master list. I started to tear up.

As if cued, my daughter happened upon me in my mini meltdown. She didn’t have to ask. She just looked at me and said, “let’s make a color-coded list for all these bottles.” She went and got her stickers, colored pens and index cards.  This is why we sent her to college to learn to be a teacher.  The big tuition bucks just came in handy because she was going to straighten me out. I turned it all over to her capable hands. Soon we had a list. I was on the phone to Nancy who told me the mystery bottle was for heartburn. And 10 minutes later, all was fine again.

I’ll still have to remember when to take all this stuff.  My new medicine regimen rivals that of my aged mother.  Take 5 of the greenies the day before chemo. Take another 5 the morning of chemo. Take day 1 pill from the foil pack the start of your treatment. Take the day 2 pill of the foil pack with 2 of the greenies the day after treatment.  Take the day 3 pill of the foil pack with another 2 greenies on second day after treatment.  You get the drift.

Then you have all the contingency meds.  I’ve got stuff for constipation, diarrhea, anxiety, pain, heartburn. I haven’t even dived into most of that stuff yet.

This is all new stuff for me.  I hate taking pills. I never even like taking multi vitamins. At least I’m done with that course of nasty-tasting Flagyl. All systems running. Literally. Gag!



  1. Dearest Echo,
    You are so much in our hearts and in our prayers. Thanks for sharing your experience and insights with us. I always end up knowing more, feeling more, and loving more with each of your posts. I’m pulling for you and yours every step of the way.

    It has been wonderful to be here in Seaside with Conrad and Chandra, Shaun and Kirstey, and to have them with us in Vancouver. Hopefully you all could come with them sometime and we bring you to some of these favorite places.

    Much love,
    Marsha and the Stum gang

    Comment by Marsha Stum — June 18, 2011 @ 2:59 pm |Reply

  2. On the front end of the week we had Lindsay and Ashley join us for the family hike through a lush forest on the Siouxon Creek trail. What peace I feel out in the woods. I so hope that you have a chance to have some quiet recuperative hours outside breathing in the symphony of smells and the richer oxygen from all the plants. I find so much strength in the hills and throughout nature. I hope you do too.

    Comment by Marsha Stum — June 20, 2011 @ 2:37 am |Reply

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