Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Port Placement

I wasn't going to blog today, but then I realized that if I don't blog today, I'm just going to have to make a really ridiculously long blog post later to include everything. So here it goes. The first thing I wanted to mention is that the other day I got a package in the mail from Livestrong. I realize this is horrible to admit, but when I opened up what looked like two big packets of paper, I was kind of disappointed. I was like, where's the free hat? The t-shirt? Those are the kinds of things that should come in big packages. When I started looking through the packets, however, I felt so grateful for them. I haven't looked through everything yet, but what I have read was inspiring. Here are two quotes from the packets that I love:
"We believe in life. Your life. We believe in living every minute of it with every ounce of your being. And that you must not let cancer take control of it. We believe in energy: channeled and fierce. We believe in focus: getting smart and living strong. Unity is strength. Knowledge is power. Attitude is everything."
"You can look at it one of two ways: You have cancer, or cancer has you."
So good. Some days I want to roll over and give up. Sometimes I want to run away to a tropical beach and pretend like I don't have cancer (and I haven't even started treatment yet. Ha!). But I feel like those quotes are really empowering. They make me want to fight cancer and live my life to its fullest, not just stumble through life until treatment is over.

In other news, I got my port today and I had a little scare. I got checked in, changed into my cute little backless gown and fuzzy socks, and was ready to go when they asked me to collect a urine sample for a pregnancy test. (Yeah, I know. TMI. Welcome to my life.) I told them there is NO way I'm pregnant. They just took all the mature eggs out of me on Sunday. But they insisted. I gave them the sample, the nurse tested it, and we continued with preparations for the port placement. A second nurse walked in and was like, "Um, did you see this test? Did you notice that second line there?" I'm sure my heart skipped a beat and all the blood must have drained out of my face. Pregnant? It's funny how something that would have made me cry tears of joy a month ago would now make me feel fear like I never have. (I was told when I first found out about my cancer that if I was pregnant I would have to postpone treatment for 9 months or terminate the pregnancy.) They did another test. It came back positive again. The more I thought about it though, the more I realized it really, REALLY was not possible that I was pregnant. Turns out, it was all the fertility meds they gave me last week that made the test come out positive. Whew. It's OKAY, guys. I'm not pregnant. I can continue with chemo tomorrow. That was just probably one of the scariest moments of my life.

K, yeah, more port stuff. They gave me meds that made it so I didn't feel anything, but unfortunately they made me feel very sick and tired for the rest of the day. A feeling I'm afraid I'm going to have to get used to. I also want to let you guys know that I was totally freaked out about getting the port and it was totally not that bad. The worst part was the sedative, not the actual operation. So if you need to get a port sometime soon, you can find comfort in the fact that getting a port will make you look awesome and brave and win you sympathy points, but really won't be too terribly painful to put in. Here are the pics:
 Can you see under my skin where the tube goes up? So nasty.
 I was happy they put it as low as they did, though. It's the
kind of thing that might show with certain shirts, but
 not all of them.
This picture, I realize, is not the most flattering
 of me or my haircut, but it gives you more
 perspective as to where the port is at.
This is just a drawing of a port so
 you can see what is inside of me.

 K, time for sleep. I have my first chemo treatment tomorrow morning. Wish me luck and keep the prayers coming! I can feel them already working wonders.


  1. All the best. Hope the side effects are minimal.

  2. Crystal, we love you!!! We are praying for you every day. Remember that power that is in you. Go kick cancer's butt!!!!

  3. Crystal,

    I can't believe how much you've been through. If you ever need anything, I'd love to help. You will be in our prayers!

  4. Crystal, my son is in the hospital right now for his last chemo to treat his Ewing Sarcoma. Having just gone thru 9 tough months, we might have useful info to share. You can contact me at and read about Porter at

    All the best!


  5. Thank you guys so much for all the love and support!

  6. You're a good writer Crystal, just so happened to come across one of your posts on my news feed. My heart is out for ya