Monday, June 3, 2013

New Drugs

I finished my first round of the new drugs! I had to stay in the hospital for 5 days while they infused me with the new chemo drugs (Ifosfamide and Etoposide). I was really nauseous, sleepy, and fatigued for 3.5 days after I left the hospital, BUT less nauseous than with doxorubicin and cisplatin.
I have no recollection of this picture being taken. Ha ha.
Also, it's the only picture of me from this round of chemo.
I also had the grand experience of getting sick (like, some kind of infection) for my first time since my diagnosis. As you guys probably know, chemotherapy compromises your immune system so it's really easy to get sick. Another result of chemotherapy is that your body can't really fight off infection. So when I got the chills and took my temperature I was pretty freaked out. If I get a fever of over 100.4 degrees, I'm supposed to immediately call the cancer center, so I did, thinking they would for sure admit me to the hospital. The on-call oncologist told me to just monitor my fever over the next 24 hours and call if nothing changed. What? I mean, having never had a fever before as a cancer patient, I may have been a little melodramatic about the whole situation, but within the next few hours I got bad headaches, a sore throat, and my fever got up to over 102 degrees. So I continued to harass the on-call doctor a few more times that night and the next morning. He prescribed me an antibiotic and told me I would be just fine. And I was. Turns out he actually knew what he was talking about. The bummer was that I had just started to recover from the chemo when I got the fever, so my "feel good" time was reduced by a few days, but fortunately I'm feeling great right now. 

So great, in fact, that I was able to go to the Taylor Swift concert last night with Michael, my sister, and our friend, Melanie. Oh boy, I'd forgotten how loud concerts are! Every time Taylor Swift made her "Blue Steel" face, I knew to plug my ears because that crowd of 14,000 women got LOUD. It was a lot of fun, though. I've always liked Taylor Swift and as an added bonus Ed Sheeran performed and he was also incredible. 

It's a little dark, but hopefully you can still
see us standing in front of T Swift's huge face!
Michael's "I'm too cool to be here" face. He used to love
Taylor Swift. When I ask him what happened, his response
is "I became a man." Ha ha.
Little sissy.
Okay and now since I am super behind on posting pictures, you get a random spattering of pictures from the last few months.
My best friend from high school, Monique, flew all the
way to Utah to visit. Sadly, this unflattering picture of me
is the only one we took of us while she was here. 
Something too many people take for granted is being physically able to leave the house and go on dates with their spouse. I think dating is crucial to having a happy marriage and although poor Mikey has a wife that only has one functional leg, is usually sick, and often gets tired after standing for 60 seconds, we do try to have fun at home still.  For example, Michael and I made a fort over our bed. We used one of my crutches to hold up one side though, so I just couldn't leave the house for a few days while we left the fort up. Ha ha. We definitely have our priorities straight. Also, check out that hair! This was before I started chemo again and it actually got about an inch long. I miss it.

This is what happens when you try to include two people
and a bed fort in a selfie. 
You eventually have to give up on including the fort and
 just take a picture of yourselves.
I also just realized that I did not post any pictures on here of my leg post surgery. I have some truly disgusting pictures of my leg from when the incision was open and not healing, but just in case some of you have eaten recently, I will not post those on here! You may still want to use caution before looking at these next pictures though. 
This picture shows how atrophied my left leg became after
not using for about a month. It's a little thicker now that
I'm putting some weight on it, but still pretty skinny.

My leg stitched up after my second surgery to
close the incision. Believe it or not this is
BEAUTIFUL compared to my leg before. 


  1. Michael's I'm too cool face made me laugh. You know it wasn't becoming a man that made him give up on Taylor Swift. It was loving you!

    I'm glad you're having some up days in between the hard ones. It seems like sleeping is a better alternative to being so sick. We're praying for you and WE LOVE YOU!

    1. Thank you! When I'm not feeling sick, I feel like I'm on top of the world. Ha ha. Love you too!

  2. So exciting that you were able to get out and go see Taylor Swift! Hope you didn't overdo it and are still feeling good. You really are awesome, that's not an exaggeration--we all mean it. You love life to the fullest whenever you can, and when you can't you are honest about it, but remain stalwart in your faith and outlook. We love you so much! Hugs and kisses to both you and Michael. You are in our thoughts every day.

    1. I am still feeling great! I'll check back into the hospital on Friday, but for now I'm feeling awesome. And you are too sweet! It is amazing how being sick all the time has made me appreciate my "feeling good" times that much more. Love you too, and thanks for the prayers!

  3. Crystal, you are so pretty! I can't get enough of how REAL your wig looks. And for the record, you can TOTALLY pull off the Senead O'Connor (sp?) look too! Awesome fort -- did you put some nature sounds on in the background, to make it feel like indoor camping? :) I'm so excited you guys went to a Taylor Swift Concert! And omigosh, Monique came to visit you?!! That is so fun! I totally remember her! I'm so glad you're feeling better... *hugs* 2 weeks from today, I get to finally see you TOO! Keep smiling and be careful on that cane!

    1. Thank you! I LOVE how my wig looks, it's just hard to wear it for longer than a few hours because it gets a little uncomfortable. I'm so excited to see you!!

  4. I'm so jealous you went to Taylor Swift

    1. Ha ha, it was awesome. Wish you could have been there!

  5. With the wig, no one would ever know you're a cancer patient in the middle of chemotherapy - seriously, you are the prettiest cancer patient I have ever seen! We are praying for you and hoping for good news every day. Thanks for being an inspiration and staying so positive even in the face of what my mom would call "a REAL problem." You give the rest of us perspective and a reason to have hope.

    1. Thanks, Sarah! Your comment was so sweet. Also thank you for the prayers. This experience more than anything else had shown me how precious life is.

  6. My daughter Sarah is 21 and has Ewing's. She's having her allograft surgery on Friday June 14th in her tibia. I have an online fundraiser for her and you mother found it and generously donated a substantial amount. I'm very grateful she did that an honored too. I'm sure that your cancer has been hard on your family also. I've read all your past posts and I'm glad you are posting again. I do like to see the pictures of your scar and surgery, that way I know what to expect for my daughter. Sarah has had 4 cycles and once surgery is over will go back for about 6 more months of chemo. She's a pretty tough cookie but chemo kicks her butt. You look really good even though you may not feel good. Thank you for your blog, it has been very helpful and encouraging to me as a mom. I wish you complete recovery and NED! When you see your mom give her a big hug for me from Sweet Sarah's mom! Thanks again, Kelli Dominguez, Sacramento CA

  7. Wish her luck for me! I will be praying for clean margins and a good histological response to the pre- operative chemo. Surgery was so much harder than I would have ever guessed, but the pain passes and progress happens. Feel free to keep in touch. There aren't many people I have to relate to and us bone cancer kids need to have each others backs! :-)

  8. Crystal thank you so much for your comment on my blog the other week!! I really appreciate it! I'm so sorry you've had to go through so much :( I just caught up on reading your posts and I feel so bad for you! I wish there was something I could do. If you ever need a friend that sort of kind of can relate to you, I am always willing to hang out or let you vent about how much chemo sucks! I've found out about a lot of cool programs that offer support and a way to meet other young cancer people just like you and its been really helpful for me! My email is on my blog if you ever need a friend or someone to take you out to ice cream or hold your puke bucket for you :)

  9. Hey Mrs.Christensen! Favorite student reporting!Haha just kidding. Or maybe I am really your favorite student? Anyways! I miss you like crazy and I'm really sad this happened to you. You are seriously one of the most amazing people I have ever met, and your positive outlook on all of this seriously blows my mind. Also your wig looks great, but you're so pretty you really don't need one.I also have some advice; if your hair does come back green, you should start looking for some clothes to match your hair:)Also: tell Michael you can never be too manly for Taylor Swift;) Anyways, I know that you'll come out of this on top, because you are just so amazing! You deserve nothing but the best, and you are always in my thoughts and in my prayers! I love and miss you!
    P.S. You are my favorite teacher. Like ever.
    P.P.S. I hope my grammar isn't too bad. Is that even the right to?
    P.P.P.S. Holy smokes that was a long commeent. I should stop now. Ok, I have to go to bed. So I'm stopping. Love you!!!!!!!!!