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  • Writer's pictureKate

Me As Tony Stark and Bulking Up for Radiation!

Today, I got measured for my Tony Stark/Iron Man/Kate Rice/Iron Woman radiation mask. My radiation team, Adela and Carlos, were great, fast, smart-talking, wise-cracking, totally focused and very high energy. I've got markers all over me, although they cleaned the ones off my face.

Also, somewhat telling exchange with Tina, my radiation nurse, who is also part of my team. We talked about working out and I said I love yoga but I can't go here -- in New York all classes are vaccinated only and you have to show your vaccination card. She grimaced. "I identify as a Houstonian, not a Texan."

I said, "Go Harris County!"

They took all sorts of images of me and have now loaded them into a computer that calibrates all sorts of god knows what so they know not only what to hit me with but at what angle to come from. My friend Sally just told me that radiologists are physics majors, makes sense to me! This takes a few days; they might have the calculations done by mid to late next week but, according to Dr. Spiotto, my radiation doc, there's no point to starting if you can't hit it for all five days.

So on Monday, October 25, I start five weeks of radiation, six doses per week (one day I get two doses) and one day of chemo, which makes the cells more sensitive to the radiation (YES!)

I also have to bulk up and baby I WILL! I don't think there are Culvers here, but when my brother and I came back from the clinic, I saw one Shake Shack!

I learned a LOT about side effects, no alcohol once I start because it irritates the throat so, please, please, drink for me!

There is continued muttering when I describe my lifestyle--Imogene, daily power walks or runs topped off by a Core Power Sculpt end-of-day workout that includes cardio and weights as well as yoga.

I'm repeating myself, but I love remembering what Dr. Spiotto, my radiation doc, said after going through the list of questions of how I feel and every answer is no (I am not experiencing pain, nausea, etc) and I say, somewhat apologetically,"I'm basically asymptomatic, huh." He mutters, "yeah, at the farthest end of the spectrum." And, I am just going to repeat what Julia, the surgeon's PA, said after hearing about me doing Imogene less than two weeks before diagnosis, muttering, "She did that with this cancer?" Anyway, I have learned a LOT about side effects. It's quite sobering. I know I have no idea of what this radiation and chemo is going to do to me and my body. I have huge, huge respect for it. I know it is going to hit me really, really hard. And I say bring it fucking on baby because I will survive it while it destroys the cancer. Meanwhile, in the selfcare department. I just finished book three of Julia Quinn's Bridgerton series! It was utterly ridiculous. Tomorrow I have a 15-minute follow-up with Dr. Zafereo, the surgeon. Last time I met him, my cousin Sarah was with me. This time, it'll be my brother John. I have a feeling he's gonna look at me and say, "Wearing out your escorts?" Love you all!

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