#chemostrong

“I keep bleeding love.” ❣️🎶❣️
- @leonalewis 
My Chemo Grand Finale Party was the second time my heart-shaped port bled in an exact heart shape when it was de-accessed. ❤️ This happened even more times if you count all the abstract hearts, too. 💕

My chemo nurse decked out my bandage with “Yay” and “SHINE” stickers, but they got tangled in all my ovarian cancer bling & dislocated. 🦋✨ Yesterday 2 nurses sat next to me at a coffee shop & I started crying to them about how much I love & miss my chemo nurse. I joked last week at my last chemo that I’m going to keep showing up every week & they’re going to be like, “Jen, you’re not getting chemo anymore, you have to leave!” But until they kick me out I’m going to keep visiting—maybe not on my *exact* chemo schedule, but regularly. 😉 And I still have to go every 6 weeks to have my port flushed so I have that to look forward to. 💦💫 This is also a great shot of my great boobs, which I might have to lose in 2+ years with a prophylactic double mastectomy due to being BRCA1. 🍈🍈 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemogram #latergram #chemoday #chemograndfinale #chemoparty #lastchemo #chemograduation #ovariancancerbling #chemolove #chemostrong #portselfie #heartshapedport #bleedinglove #hearts #love #boobs #brca #brca1 #stickers #yasqueen #yourock #fighter #warrior #survivor
“I keep bleeding love.” ❣️🎶❣️
- @leonalewis
My Chemo Grand Finale Party was the second time my heart-shaped port bled in an exact heart shape when it was de-accessed. ❤️ This happened even more times if you count all the abstract hearts, too. 💕

My chemo nurse decked out my bandage with “Yay” and “SHINE” stickers, but they got tangled in all my ovarian cancer bling & dislocated. 🦋✨ Yesterday 2 nurses sat next to me at a coffee shop & I started crying to them about how much I love & miss my chemo nurse. I joked last week at my last chemo that I’m going to keep showing up every week & they’re going to be like, “Jen, you’re not getting chemo anymore, you have to leave!” But until they kick me out I’m going to keep visiting—maybe not on my *exact* chemo schedule, but regularly. 😉 And I still have to go every 6 weeks to have my port flushed so I have that to look forward to. 💦💫 This is also a great shot of my great boobs, which I might have to lose in 2+ years with a prophylactic double mastectomy due to being BRCA1. 🍈🍈 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemogram #latergram #chemoday #chemograndfinale #chemoparty #lastchemo #chemograduation #ovariancancerbling #chemolove #chemostrong #portselfie #heartshapedport #bleedinglove #hearts #love #boobs #brca #brca1 #stickers #yasqueen #yourock #fighter #warrior #survivor
There was a scheduling snafu the night before my 1st chemo appointment & it made me really stressed out & anxious. What happens when I feel anxious & like things are out of my control is I go into hypervigilant I-Am-Going-to-Manage-Everything-Down-to-the-Tiniest-Detail Mode, & this is where I was that night. So I was PRAYING. Praying for the knowledge, or understanding, or at least a little space that I DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALONE. That I don’t have to take care of EVERYTHING. I was praying for help—that someone, or something, outside of myself could help me.

The next morning I went to my 1st chemo appointment & was greeted by my chemo nurse. She was so kind & competent & warm that I instantly felt at ease. I instantly felt I was being taken care of. *That someone was taking care of me & I didn’t have to do it all myself.* I’m pretty sure I said “I love you” to her on that first day, & I might have cried when I told her how stressed out & scared I’d been. And on my way out afterwards, I stopped at the front desk to book my next appointment & request her FOREVER 💕

Since I was throwing my Chemo Grand Finale Party last week, they gave me a big, double room, or what I like to call a “suite,” & had set up a table in it for my doughnuts & decorations. And on the table was this gift from my nurse—a ginormous butterfly balloon that’s half the size of my body & a “Let’s Celebrate” gift bag filled with the following: ✨A card w/an Elisabeth Kübler-Ross quote on it
✨A “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over it became a butterfly” wall hanging ✨A necklace w/3 charms — “Warrior” because she calls me her warrior, “J” for my first initial, & a sapphire for my birthstone. I’m sure she’s very familiar w/my birth date bc they have to verify it every. single. time. they give you a chemo drug 😉
✨A Passion Planner w/a cancer awareness ribbon on the back 💝
✨ A bunch of stickers. One sheet is of butterflies & I was thinking, “One’s missing,” & then when I opened the planner I saw that she’d put a butterfly on that day, April 9th 🦋

This is probably the best, most perfect gift I’ve ever received. I feel so seen & gotten by my chemo nurse 😊 And I love her 💗
There was a scheduling snafu the night before my 1st chemo appointment & it made me really stressed out & anxious. What happens when I feel anxious & like things are out of my control is I go into hypervigilant I-Am-Going-to-Manage-Everything-Down-to-the-Tiniest-Detail Mode, & this is where I was that night. So I was PRAYING. Praying for the knowledge, or understanding, or at least a little space that I DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALONE. That I don’t have to take care of EVERYTHING. I was praying for help—that someone, or something, outside of myself could help me.

The next morning I went to my 1st chemo appointment & was greeted by my chemo nurse. She was so kind & competent & warm that I instantly felt at ease. I instantly felt I was being taken care of. *That someone was taking care of me & I didn’t have to do it all myself.* I’m pretty sure I said “I love you” to her on that first day, & I might have cried when I told her how stressed out & scared I’d been. And on my way out afterwards, I stopped at the front desk to book my next appointment & request her FOREVER 💕

Since I was throwing my Chemo Grand Finale Party last week, they gave me a big, double room, or what I like to call a “suite,” & had set up a table in it for my doughnuts & decorations. And on the table was this gift from my nurse—a ginormous butterfly balloon that’s half the size of my body & a “Let’s Celebrate” gift bag filled with the following: ✨A card w/an Elisabeth Kübler-Ross quote on it
✨A “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over it became a butterfly” wall hanging ✨A necklace w/3 charms — “Warrior” because she calls me her warrior, “J” for my first initial, & a sapphire for my birthstone. I’m sure she’s very familiar w/my birth date bc they have to verify it every. single. time. they give you a chemo drug 😉
✨A Passion Planner w/a cancer awareness ribbon on the back 💝
✨ A bunch of stickers. One sheet is of butterflies & I was thinking, “One’s missing,” & then when I opened the planner I saw that she’d put a butterfly on that day, April 9th 🦋

This is probably the best, most perfect gift I’ve ever received. I feel so seen & gotten by my chemo nurse 😊 And I love her 💗
Nothing’s better than finding that one perfect tree to rest on😌Enjoying my book, while occasionally catching glimpses of cute teeny turtle heads popping out of the pond.💗🐢🤓📖 #nature #beautifulday #sunday #funday #living #stayingstrong #enjoyingthemoment #onedayatatime #books #turtles #relax #conquering #anxiety #depression #ptsd #chemostrong #bookworm #alwaysreading #myescape
Nothing’s better than finding that one perfect tree to rest on😌Enjoying my book, while occasionally catching glimpses of cute teeny turtle heads popping out of the pond.💗🐢🤓📖 #nature #beautifulday #sunday #funday #living #stayingstrong #enjoyingthemoment #onedayatatime #books #turtles #relax #conquering #anxiety #depression #ptsd #chemostrong #bookworm #alwaysreading #myescape
My chemo nurse gave me this ginormous butterfly balloon for my Chemo Graduation and now I feel like I have a roommate. 🤣

Like, I keep bumping into her. 🦋

She’s pretty quiet & easy-going, but as my Mom says, she’s “full of hot air.” 😉🎈 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemogifts #lastchemo #chemograndfinale #chemograduation #chemolove #chemostrong #butterfly #transformation #roomies #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
My chemo nurse gave me this ginormous butterfly balloon for my Chemo Graduation and now I feel like I have a roommate. 🤣

Like, I keep bumping into her. 🦋

She’s pretty quiet & easy-going, but as my Mom says, she’s “full of hot air.” 😉🎈 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemogifts #lastchemo #chemograndfinale #chemograduation #chemolove #chemostrong #butterfly #transformation #roomies #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
This Tuesday was my last day of chemo, so obviously I had to throw a party. I felt some pressure to top my other two Chemo Parties (at the end of my 1st round in December & Valentine’s Day), but I think it’s safe to say that my CHEMO GRAND FINALE BLOWOUT BASH topped them all (& the others were pretty great!)! First of all, THANK YOU to my neighborhood @doughnutplant in Brooklyn for so kindly & generously donating TWO DOZEN big, beautiful, delicious doughnuts for me, my Chemo Squad friends who came to chemo with me week after week, the nurses & staff there, & the other chemo patients. Special thanks to Jeff at Doughnut Plant Corporate, store manager Selene, & Leslie in social media for making it happen in a snap. 🍩 Everyone loved them, & they set a celebratory—& delicious—mood. After chemo, I dropped the leftovers off at my doctor’s office because he SAVED MY LIFE. 💗🌟✨ And then there were the ovarian-cancer-themed party favors, which are actually a lot more fun than they sound 😉 I got these lovely TEAL ovarian cancer awareness bead-and-ribbon necklaces from @orientaltrading. 🦋 Thanks to Christine, Michelle, & Kate there for their help & the HUGE discount on overnight shipping to ensure that they arrived on time for my party without me having to pay an arm & a leg 😊💪🦵 Thank you to my AMAZING chemo nurse, who made coming to chemo a JOY! I hit the jackpot with her 🍀 Thanks also to the rest of the nurses & staff there for creating a warm, caring, loving environment that I not only enjoyed going to every week, but looked forward to! 💞

Thanks to my CHEMO SQUAD 💥 for coming with me to chemo week after week over the course of 6 months! I thought they’d get sick of it after 1 or 2 times, but they kept showing up—with bells on! 💗🎊💓 And THANK YOU to my INCREDIBLE doctor for creating my treatment plan (See also: SAVING MY LIFE), & his nurse practitioner for overseeing my care at chemo every week, & both of them for everything they did to get me to this amazing milestone. 
Look Ma, I graduated! 🌟💖✨
This Tuesday was my last day of chemo, so obviously I had to throw a party. I felt some pressure to top my other two Chemo Parties (at the end of my 1st round in December & Valentine’s Day), but I think it’s safe to say that my CHEMO GRAND FINALE BLOWOUT BASH topped them all (& the others were pretty great!)! First of all, THANK YOU to my neighborhood @doughnutplant in Brooklyn for so kindly & generously donating TWO DOZEN big, beautiful, delicious doughnuts for me, my Chemo Squad friends who came to chemo with me week after week, the nurses & staff there, & the other chemo patients. Special thanks to Jeff at Doughnut Plant Corporate, store manager Selene, & Leslie in social media for making it happen in a snap. 🍩 Everyone loved them, & they set a celebratory—& delicious—mood. After chemo, I dropped the leftovers off at my doctor’s office because he SAVED MY LIFE. 💗🌟✨ And then there were the ovarian-cancer-themed party favors, which are actually a lot more fun than they sound 😉 I got these lovely TEAL ovarian cancer awareness bead-and-ribbon necklaces from @orientaltrading. 🦋 Thanks to Christine, Michelle, & Kate there for their help & the HUGE discount on overnight shipping to ensure that they arrived on time for my party without me having to pay an arm & a leg 😊💪🦵 Thank you to my AMAZING chemo nurse, who made coming to chemo a JOY! I hit the jackpot with her 🍀 Thanks also to the rest of the nurses & staff there for creating a warm, caring, loving environment that I not only enjoyed going to every week, but looked forward to! 💞

Thanks to my CHEMO SQUAD 💥 for coming with me to chemo week after week over the course of 6 months! I thought they’d get sick of it after 1 or 2 times, but they kept showing up—with bells on! 💗🎊💓 And THANK YOU to my INCREDIBLE doctor for creating my treatment plan (See also: SAVING MY LIFE), & his nurse practitioner for overseeing my care at chemo every week, & both of them for everything they did to get me to this amazing milestone.
Look Ma, I graduated! 🌟💖✨
Every week on my way to chemo, I’d stop at @starbucks to get a coffee & a bottle of water.

The baristas know that this is my pre-chemo coffee, & they knew that yesterday was my last chemo, so they gave me my usual coffee & bottled water for free.

Then they went in back & came out with this big, beautiful bouquet of flowers for me. One of the baristas said that she tried to get them in Wonder Woman colors (she must’ve seen my Wonder Woman socks last week). 💐💪🌟 Thanks to @starbucks for being a part of my weekly chemo ritual over the past 6 months, and to Tania & store manager Danny for the comped last-day-of-chemo coffee & water, & the gorgeous, thoughtful flowers. ❤️☕️💜🌺 📷 taken where I always sip my pre-chemo coffee: in the chemo waiting room. 💕

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemogram #chemoritual #chemochronicles #lastchemo #chemostrong #coffee #starbucks #neighborhood #brooklyn #parkslope #community #loveandsupport #wonderwoman #fighter #warrior #survivor
Every week on my way to chemo, I’d stop at @starbucks to get a coffee & a bottle of water.

The baristas know that this is my pre-chemo coffee, & they knew that yesterday was my last chemo, so they gave me my usual coffee & bottled water for free.

Then they went in back & came out with this big, beautiful bouquet of flowers for me. One of the baristas said that she tried to get them in Wonder Woman colors (she must’ve seen my Wonder Woman socks last week). 💐💪🌟 Thanks to @starbucks for being a part of my weekly chemo ritual over the past 6 months, and to Tania & store manager Danny for the comped last-day-of-chemo coffee & water, & the gorgeous, thoughtful flowers. ❤️☕️💜🌺 📷 taken where I always sip my pre-chemo coffee: in the chemo waiting room. 💕

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemogram #chemoritual #chemochronicles #lastchemo #chemostrong #coffee #starbucks #neighborhood #brooklyn #parkslope #community #loveandsupport #wonderwoman #fighter #warrior #survivor
Spring in bloom on my way to my last chemo yesterday. 🌺🌸🌼🌷 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #lastchemo #chemochronicles #chemostrong #spring #rebirth #renewal #newbeginnings #brooklyn #parkslope #brownstonebrooklyn #fighter #warrior #survivor
Wow. Today was my last chemo. 🦋

I took lots of pictures today & I’ll post my Chemo Party Pics soon!

But for now... Well, it’s been an unbelievable 6 months & I’m taking a NAP! 😴✨ #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemoparty #lastchemo #chemostrong #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
Wow. Today was my last chemo. 🦋

I took lots of pictures today & I’ll post my Chemo Party Pics soon!

But for now... Well, it’s been an unbelievable 6 months & I’m taking a NAP! 😴✨ #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemoparty #lastchemo #chemostrong #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
⚡️HAIR UPDATE⚡️ The Little Follicles That Could 🚂

During my 1st round of chemo, I didn’t lose my hair for a month & I thought I might be that person who doesn’t lose their hair from chemo. I was not that person. At the month mark, my long, curly hair started falling out in clumps in the shower like you hear about, where it’s sticking to the shower walls and piling up on the drain. I got a short pixie cut, but that only lasted for 2 weeks because at that point my hair was falling out like crazy—in handfuls if I ran my hands through my hair, covering my pillowcase every morning, falling into the pages of a notebook I was writing in, & swimming in my bowl of cereal & milk in the morning. So I shaved it.

After a few months, it painstakingly started to grow back. But then I began my 2nd round of chemo, & I fully expected my hair to fall out again. Only... it didn’t.

I’m done w/chemo in 2 days, so these little follicles just need to hang on for another couple days. 🤞 Note the cute little white flippy curls by my ears. ➰〰️ I started to go gray early & have been coloring my hair for over 20 years. But now that I’ve had cancer, I don’t think I’ll be coloring my hair to cover the gray anymore—submitting my head to being covered in likely toxic chemicals every 4-6 weeks has somehow lost its appeal. However, now that my hair is salt & pepper, heavy on the 🧂, I think I could *occasionally* do a fun color. I’m dreaming of rose gold after my treatment... 💖✨ I’ll need to go to my wonderful stylist @penelopeloveshair at @sambrocatosalon soon to get my actual HAIR, CUT. 💁🏻‍♀️ And while I’m there I’ll need to consult with @marysutcolor about adding a streak or two of fun. 🌈

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemosideeffects #chemohair #chemostrong #hair #newdo #fighter #warrior #survivor
⚡️HAIR UPDATE⚡️ The Little Follicles That Could 🚂

During my 1st round of chemo, I didn’t lose my hair for a month & I thought I might be that person who doesn’t lose their hair from chemo. I was not that person. At the month mark, my long, curly hair started falling out in clumps in the shower like you hear about, where it’s sticking to the shower walls and piling up on the drain. I got a short pixie cut, but that only lasted for 2 weeks because at that point my hair was falling out like crazy—in handfuls if I ran my hands through my hair, covering my pillowcase every morning, falling into the pages of a notebook I was writing in, & swimming in my bowl of cereal & milk in the morning. So I shaved it.

After a few months, it painstakingly started to grow back. But then I began my 2nd round of chemo, & I fully expected my hair to fall out again. Only... it didn’t.

I’m done w/chemo in 2 days, so these little follicles just need to hang on for another couple days. 🤞 Note the cute little white flippy curls by my ears. ➰〰️ I started to go gray early & have been coloring my hair for over 20 years. But now that I’ve had cancer, I don’t think I’ll be coloring my hair to cover the gray anymore—submitting my head to being covered in likely toxic chemicals every 4-6 weeks has somehow lost its appeal. However, now that my hair is salt & pepper, heavy on the 🧂, I think I could *occasionally* do a fun color. I’m dreaming of rose gold after my treatment... 💖✨ I’ll need to go to my wonderful stylist @penelopeloveshair at @sambrocatosalon soon to get my actual HAIR, CUT. 💁🏻‍♀️ And while I’m there I’ll need to consult with @marysutcolor about adding a streak or two of fun. 🌈

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemosideeffects #chemohair #chemostrong #hair #newdo #fighter #warrior #survivor
My Lucky Chemo Bracelet™️ collection is growing, & paired with the Wonder Woman socks, my chemo accessories were ON POINT this week. 💯

The woman at the front desk at chemo made this beaded bracelet for me for Valentine’s Day, and she also gave some to my Squad. I’ve worn it every week & the one time I forgot was the week my immunity was too low to be treated so they sent me home. I told her I’m never making that mistake again & have worn it to chemo every time since.

A friend recently sent me this JUST BREATHE bracelet from @survivorstrong.official & I don’t know about you, but I could *always* use this reminder.

On a side note, this week my Chemo Squad members mentioned that—totally unbeknownst to me & this is not something we talked about or coordinated—they also wear their beaded Lucky Chemo Bracelets™️ to my chemo every week. 💞✨💫 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoaccessories #luckychemobracelets #chemostrong #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #cancercarepackage #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
My Lucky Chemo Bracelet™️ collection is growing, & paired with the Wonder Woman socks, my chemo accessories were ON POINT this week. 💯

The woman at the front desk at chemo made this beaded bracelet for me for Valentine’s Day, and she also gave some to my Squad. I’ve worn it every week & the one time I forgot was the week my immunity was too low to be treated so they sent me home. I told her I’m never making that mistake again & have worn it to chemo every time since.

A friend recently sent me this JUST BREATHE bracelet from @survivorstrong.official & I don’t know about you, but I could *always* use this reminder.

On a side note, this week my Chemo Squad members mentioned that—totally unbeknownst to me & this is not something we talked about or coordinated—they also wear their beaded Lucky Chemo Bracelets™️ to my chemo every week. 💞✨💫 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoaccessories #luckychemobracelets #chemostrong #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #cancercarepackage #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
People often say that I make chemo LOOK fun. But chemo actually IS fun. (Because I make it fun 😉) Here’s what happens:

On my way there I stop at @starbucks for a coffee & bottled water. Many of the baristas know I’m on my way to chemo, so sometimes I’ll talk to them about it.

My friend who lives a few blocks from me often does the 1st shift in my Chemo Squad, so when that’s the case, I stop at her place & pick her up. Otherwise, I’ll just meet whoever’s doing Shift #1 there.

I L-O-V-E my chemo nurse. I text with her throughout the week, but I’m still always so excited to see her & catch up. Sometimes there is hugging. 💞

Three friends come sit w/me each week, in 2-hour shifts, so I get to catch up w/my friends, too. I don’t do much, if any, socializing during the week, so this is my main social time all week.

Before I get the chemo, I get a series of pre-meds intravenously to mitigate any potential side effects. One of these is Benadryl, & as soon as I get it my eyes get heavy & I lose the ability to form coherent thoughts & sentences. At this point, someone—one of the nurses, a friend, or a hospital volunteer—gets me a blanket & tucks me in, & then I pass out. Then I get the chemo drug or drugs that KILL THE CANCER. ✨

I get a little 2nd wind at the end & wake-up, albeit not w/my usual energy level. On my way home I pick up an everything bagel lightly toasted w/scallion cream cheese. The same guy there always serves me, & he knows I’m coming from chemo so he throws in free cookies of my choice.

I go home, eat my bagel, change into my pajamas, & take a long (approx. 2-hour) nap. I wake up to eat dinner & putter around (sometimes there is @netflix or @amazonprimevideo viewing), & then I go back to sleep.

I write a lengthy to-do list every day except for Chemo Day. On Chemo Day there is nothing for me to do except for the most important thing—get chemo.

Here I am this week at chemo, rocking my Wonder Woman socks from my friend & her company @beyondflowersandfood which creates gift baskets for people going through difficult times.

Oh—& for those of you keeping track: This week was my #penultimatechemo & next week is the LAST ONE! 🌟🦋💖
People often say that I make chemo LOOK fun. But chemo actually IS fun. (Because I make it fun 😉) Here’s what happens:

On my way there I stop at @starbucks for a coffee & bottled water. Many of the baristas know I’m on my way to chemo, so sometimes I’ll talk to them about it.

My friend who lives a few blocks from me often does the 1st shift in my Chemo Squad, so when that’s the case, I stop at her place & pick her up. Otherwise, I’ll just meet whoever’s doing Shift #1 there.

I L-O-V-E my chemo nurse. I text with her throughout the week, but I’m still always so excited to see her & catch up. Sometimes there is hugging. 💞

Three friends come sit w/me each week, in 2-hour shifts, so I get to catch up w/my friends, too. I don’t do much, if any, socializing during the week, so this is my main social time all week.

Before I get the chemo, I get a series of pre-meds intravenously to mitigate any potential side effects. One of these is Benadryl, & as soon as I get it my eyes get heavy & I lose the ability to form coherent thoughts & sentences. At this point, someone—one of the nurses, a friend, or a hospital volunteer—gets me a blanket & tucks me in, & then I pass out. Then I get the chemo drug or drugs that KILL THE CANCER. ✨

I get a little 2nd wind at the end & wake-up, albeit not w/my usual energy level. On my way home I pick up an everything bagel lightly toasted w/scallion cream cheese. The same guy there always serves me, & he knows I’m coming from chemo so he throws in free cookies of my choice.

I go home, eat my bagel, change into my pajamas, & take a long (approx. 2-hour) nap. I wake up to eat dinner & putter around (sometimes there is @netflix or @amazonprimevideo viewing), & then I go back to sleep.

I write a lengthy to-do list every day except for Chemo Day. On Chemo Day there is nothing for me to do except for the most important thing—get chemo.

Here I am this week at chemo, rocking my Wonder Woman socks from my friend & her company @beyondflowersandfood which creates gift baskets for people going through difficult times.

Oh—& for those of you keeping track: This week was my #penultimatechemo & next week is the LAST ONE! 🌟🦋💖
My Heart Stopped beating 3 times b4 & i never want that to happen again. Going to see the Cardiologist who told me i was gonna DIE HA👊💪❤ Never Underestimate the POWER OF GOD
#chemostrong #evansstrong. #franksintramyway
My Heart Stopped beating 3 times b4 & i never want that to happen again. Going to see the Cardiologist who told me i was gonna DIE HA👊💪❤ Never Underestimate the POWER OF GOD
#chemostrong #evansstrong. #franksintramyway
💥💥💥THE LAST CARBO💥💥💥 My two 9-week cycles of chemo, one before my surgery & one after, are actually made up of 3 consecutive 3-week cycles. In Week 1 I get two chemo drugs—Carbo & Taxol—and in Weeks 2 and 3 I only get the Taxol.

The Taxol is, comparatively, a piece of cake. 🍰 On Taxol-only weeks, I just get a little tired. The Carbo is what kicks my ass & gives me the bad side effects—nausea, exhaustion, loss of appetite, & a general feeling of crappiness. 🤢

The 1st time I got Carbo I didn’t have any side effects. But I wasn’t in the clear, bc chemo, & its side effects, are CUMULATIVE. And 3 weeks later, after my next Carbo treatment, they hit me hard.

People always say you have to get ahead of the nausea. Bc once you fall behind, you can’t catch up. After that 2nd Carbo cycle, I felt a little nauseous in the middle of the night. But I didn’t get up to take my anti-nausea medication, & I just took it when I got up in the morning. At that point, it was TOO LATE. I couldn’t catch up; I just had to ride out the extreme nausea until it passed.

That was also the 1st time I really felt like a cancer patient. When I was hospitalized everything happened so fast, & I was kind of in shock. And then I got home & felt pretty ok & was just doing what I needed to do to adjust to my new life. But that day when I woke up so nauseous, I felt seriously ILL. I called the pharmacy crying bc I also had a splitting headache & I was taking so much medication b/t the chemo & the anti-nausea pills & my antidepressant that I didn’t know if I could safely take a Motrin w/o drug interactions.

I learned from that experience to GET AHEAD of the nausea, & now whenever I get Carbo I start prophylactically taking the anti-nausea medication every 8 hours, starting the night I get chemo & for the next 4 days or so. If that 8-hour mark falls in the middle of the night, I’ll set my alarm & get up in the middle of the night to take it. Once I stopped taking it a day early bc I was feeling ok, & then I threw up in the middle of the night.

This week, after 6 Carbo infusions over the past 6 months, I had my LAST ONE! It’s the FINAL COUNTDOWN y’all—only 2 more chemo treatments left!!
💥💥💥THE LAST CARBO💥💥💥 My two 9-week cycles of chemo, one before my surgery & one after, are actually made up of 3 consecutive 3-week cycles. In Week 1 I get two chemo drugs—Carbo & Taxol—and in Weeks 2 and 3 I only get the Taxol.

The Taxol is, comparatively, a piece of cake. 🍰 On Taxol-only weeks, I just get a little tired. The Carbo is what kicks my ass & gives me the bad side effects—nausea, exhaustion, loss of appetite, & a general feeling of crappiness. 🤢

The 1st time I got Carbo I didn’t have any side effects. But I wasn’t in the clear, bc chemo, & its side effects, are CUMULATIVE. And 3 weeks later, after my next Carbo treatment, they hit me hard.

People always say you have to get ahead of the nausea. Bc once you fall behind, you can’t catch up. After that 2nd Carbo cycle, I felt a little nauseous in the middle of the night. But I didn’t get up to take my anti-nausea medication, & I just took it when I got up in the morning. At that point, it was TOO LATE. I couldn’t catch up; I just had to ride out the extreme nausea until it passed.

That was also the 1st time I really felt like a cancer patient. When I was hospitalized everything happened so fast, & I was kind of in shock. And then I got home & felt pretty ok & was just doing what I needed to do to adjust to my new life. But that day when I woke up so nauseous, I felt seriously ILL. I called the pharmacy crying bc I also had a splitting headache & I was taking so much medication b/t the chemo & the anti-nausea pills & my antidepressant that I didn’t know if I could safely take a Motrin w/o drug interactions.

I learned from that experience to GET AHEAD of the nausea, & now whenever I get Carbo I start prophylactically taking the anti-nausea medication every 8 hours, starting the night I get chemo & for the next 4 days or so. If that 8-hour mark falls in the middle of the night, I’ll set my alarm & get up in the middle of the night to take it. Once I stopped taking it a day early bc I was feeling ok, & then I threw up in the middle of the night.

This week, after 6 Carbo infusions over the past 6 months, I had my LAST ONE! It’s the FINAL COUNTDOWN y’all—only 2 more chemo treatments left!!
Ice cream: The official dinner of nauseous chemo patients with no appetite 🤢🍦🤢 My favorite: @jenisicecreams Salted Peanut Butter With Chocolate Flecks. I deliberately stocked up for this week in preparation for the nausea! 
#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemosideeffects #chemostrong #icecream #dinner #whatsfordinner #chemodinner #fighter #warrior #survivor
Ice cream: The official dinner of nauseous chemo patients with no appetite 🤢🍦🤢 My favorite: @jenisicecreams Salted Peanut Butter With Chocolate Flecks. I deliberately stocked up for this week in preparation for the nausea!
#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemosideeffects #chemostrong #icecream #dinner #whatsfordinner #chemodinner #fighter #warrior #survivor
I Chose Life Over Death. I AM A VESSEL
I decided to Volunteer My Time Mind & Soul to Those in the Struggle to Fight This Nasty Disease. I will Be here Helping Ppl soon at The Cancer Center. For Those in the Struggle...FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT
#fuckcancer #evansstrong. #chemostrong
I Chose Life Over Death. I AM A VESSEL
I decided to Volunteer My Time Mind & Soul to Those in the Struggle to Fight This Nasty Disease. I will Be here Helping Ppl soon at The Cancer Center. For Those in the Struggle...FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT
#fuckcancer #evansstrong. #chemostrong
This week at chemo, one of two Very Special cameo appearances in my Chemo Squad was made by my high school best friend ZOE, who came in all the way from Chappaqua bearing a huge, beautiful gift basket from her local bookstore, & paying a shit-ton of money to park in parking garages near where I get chemo & then when we went out to lunch afterwards at the bagel place where I get my post-chemo bagel every week. Zoe & I grew up in the same hometown and we were inseparable in high school & on our summer & winter breaks during college, & then we were roommates in The Colorado building on the Upper East Side for 3 years when I graduated from college. Our birthdays are 2 days apart so we often had joint birthday celebrations. Over one summer break in college, we both worked as cocktail waitresses at The Chart House in Dobbs Ferry, & we even developed our own secret language so we could talk about personal things in front of everyone there & no one would know what we were talking about, & over lunch this week after chemo, we realized that we're both still fluent in it (BCIA, IHTBCOT!!!). This is us.... ✨This week at chemo, March 2019
✨At Zoe's 40th birthday party at her home in Chappaqua, September 2014 (this is the last time we saw each other before this week)
✨When we were bridesmaids in our friend Kate's wedding on Cape Cod, Summer 2001
✨Celebrating my 24th birthday & her 25th birthday at a restaurant in Cape Cod, eating all the seafood & drinking all the wine... and then posing in front of the spectacular sunset along the waterfront in Woods Hole, September 1999
✨In front of the house I grew up in on the day of my high school graduation, June 1993

Our friendship goes back almost 30 years. It's so, so good to have great old friends who go way back. 💕💞💕 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemosquad #squadgoals #chemostrong #friends #friendship #oldfriends #bestfriends #the90s #HoH #love #loveandsupport #community #circleoflove #fighter #warrior #survivor
This week at chemo, one of two Very Special cameo appearances in my Chemo Squad was made by my high school best friend ZOE, who came in all the way from Chappaqua bearing a huge, beautiful gift basket from her local bookstore, & paying a shit-ton of money to park in parking garages near where I get chemo & then when we went out to lunch afterwards at the bagel place where I get my post-chemo bagel every week. Zoe & I grew up in the same hometown and we were inseparable in high school & on our summer & winter breaks during college, & then we were roommates in The Colorado building on the Upper East Side for 3 years when I graduated from college. Our birthdays are 2 days apart so we often had joint birthday celebrations. Over one summer break in college, we both worked as cocktail waitresses at The Chart House in Dobbs Ferry, & we even developed our own secret language so we could talk about personal things in front of everyone there & no one would know what we were talking about, & over lunch this week after chemo, we realized that we're both still fluent in it (BCIA, IHTBCOT!!!). This is us.... ✨This week at chemo, March 2019
✨At Zoe's 40th birthday party at her home in Chappaqua, September 2014 (this is the last time we saw each other before this week)
✨When we were bridesmaids in our friend Kate's wedding on Cape Cod, Summer 2001
✨Celebrating my 24th birthday & her 25th birthday at a restaurant in Cape Cod, eating all the seafood & drinking all the wine... and then posing in front of the spectacular sunset along the waterfront in Woods Hole, September 1999
✨In front of the house I grew up in on the day of my high school graduation, June 1993

Our friendship goes back almost 30 years. It's so, so good to have great old friends who go way back. 💕💞💕 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemosquad #squadgoals #chemostrong #friends #friendship #oldfriends #bestfriends #the90s #HoH #love #loveandsupport #community #circleoflove #fighter #warrior #survivor
This week we had a Very Special Chemo Squad Episode with cameo appearances from some very special guests. ✨First we had GABE, who is the FIRST MAN EVER in the Squad. I met Gabe 18 ago years because we both used to go see @gavindegraw play every Monday night when he was just starting out, at a piano bar called Wilson's on the Upper West Side that no longer exists. I haven't seen Gabe in about 17 years. I told everyone that we were going to have the first MAN in the Squad & everyone was very excited. My friend who was supposed to do the 8am shift had to cancel because she got sick, & when she texted me to tell me she wrote, "I don't want to miss the man!!" And when Gabe arrived & checked-in with the woman at the front desk, she greeted him with, "So you're the MAN." ✨Then we had my high school best friend ZOE, who came in from Chappaqua bearing this huge gift basket from her local bookstore. I haven't seen Zoe since her 40th birthday party in 2014.

Zoe and I grew up in a suburb of New York City on the East Coast, & Gabe grew up in LA on the West Coast, but Zoe & Gabe happen to know each other from when they were growing up because Zoe's Mom's best friend dated Gabe's Dad. I scheduled them for overlapping chemo shifts so we could have a reunion.

Every week before I get my chemo drug or drugs, I get a series of pre-meds intravenously to mitigate any possible side effects from the chemo, one of which is Benadryl. As soon as that Benadryl floods into my veins my eyes get heavy, and I lose my train of thought, along with my ability to form coherent sentences, & then I pass out. I didn't even take my usual Benadryl nap this week because there was so much excitement & catching up to do!

What most people don't know is that chemo can actually be really wonderful & fun. 💞

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemosquad #squadgoals #chemostrong #friends #friendship #community #love #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
This week we had a Very Special Chemo Squad Episode with cameo appearances from some very special guests. ✨First we had GABE, who is the FIRST MAN EVER in the Squad. I met Gabe 18 ago years because we both used to go see @gavindegraw play every Monday night when he was just starting out, at a piano bar called Wilson's on the Upper West Side that no longer exists. I haven't seen Gabe in about 17 years. I told everyone that we were going to have the first MAN in the Squad & everyone was very excited. My friend who was supposed to do the 8am shift had to cancel because she got sick, & when she texted me to tell me she wrote, "I don't want to miss the man!!" And when Gabe arrived & checked-in with the woman at the front desk, she greeted him with, "So you're the MAN." ✨Then we had my high school best friend ZOE, who came in from Chappaqua bearing this huge gift basket from her local bookstore. I haven't seen Zoe since her 40th birthday party in 2014.

Zoe and I grew up in a suburb of New York City on the East Coast, & Gabe grew up in LA on the West Coast, but Zoe & Gabe happen to know each other from when they were growing up because Zoe's Mom's best friend dated Gabe's Dad. I scheduled them for overlapping chemo shifts so we could have a reunion.

Every week before I get my chemo drug or drugs, I get a series of pre-meds intravenously to mitigate any possible side effects from the chemo, one of which is Benadryl. As soon as that Benadryl floods into my veins my eyes get heavy, and I lose my train of thought, along with my ability to form coherent sentences, & then I pass out. I didn't even take my usual Benadryl nap this week because there was so much excitement & catching up to do!

What most people don't know is that chemo can actually be really wonderful & fun. 💞

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #chemosquad #squadgoals #chemostrong #friends #friendship #community #love #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
My regular chemo nurse wasn't there today so I had another nurse, and she told me that my port is shaped like a heart & that she's never seen that before. (My regular chemo nurse also pointed out that my port was heart-shaped a few months ago.) When they de-access my port after chemo, they put a bandage over it & there are usually a few drops of blood that form on the bandage. When I got home from chemo today & was changing into my pajamas for my post-chemo nap, I noticed that the blood formation was actually shaped like a heart, too.

I love that I have so much love in my life—and in my body. And when I told my Mom about this she said that I'm full of heart. ❤️💙💜 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #portselfie #chemostrong #hearts #love #fighter #warrior #survivor
My regular chemo nurse wasn't there today so I had another nurse, and she told me that my port is shaped like a heart & that she's never seen that before. (My regular chemo nurse also pointed out that my port was heart-shaped a few months ago.) When they de-access my port after chemo, they put a bandage over it & there are usually a few drops of blood that form on the bandage. When I got home from chemo today & was changing into my pajamas for my post-chemo nap, I noticed that the blood formation was actually shaped like a heart, too.

I love that I have so much love in my life—and in my body. And when I told my Mom about this she said that I'm full of heart. ❤️💙💜 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemoday #portselfie #chemostrong #hearts #love #fighter #warrior #survivor
Wonder Twin (Triplet) powers, activate!

Unbeknownst to me, the woman who works at the front desk at chemo made these bracelets to bring to my Chemo Valentine's Day party. But then she was sick that day & didn't come to work. So last week when she was back she gave me one, & I asked if I could have some for my Chemo Squad, too.

Today at chemo we took this picture of me & my friends who did Shifts #1 and #2, during the changeover of shifts. The woman at the front desk & my chemo nurse were wearing these bracelets, too. 💞✨ #circleoflove #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemogram #chemoday #chemosquad #squadgoals #chemolove #chemobracelet #chemostrong #friends #friendship #wondertriplets #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
Wonder Twin (Triplet) powers, activate!

Unbeknownst to me, the woman who works at the front desk at chemo made these bracelets to bring to my Chemo Valentine's Day party. But then she was sick that day & didn't come to work. So last week when she was back she gave me one, & I asked if I could have some for my Chemo Squad, too.

Today at chemo we took this picture of me & my friends who did Shifts #1 and #2, during the changeover of shifts. The woman at the front desk & my chemo nurse were wearing these bracelets, too. 💞✨ #circleoflove #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemogram #chemoday #chemosquad #squadgoals #chemolove #chemobracelet #chemostrong #friends #friendship #wondertriplets #community #loveandsupport #fighter #warrior #survivor
OMG I have so much hair!!! And I loooovvvvvvve it! ❤️ My friend took this picture at chemo this week because I had no idea what was going on in the back of my head. First of all, it's really DARK. It's pretty white on the top & sides. And it's so THICK. If you were standing behind me in line, you wouldn't necessarily know that I had cancer & might just think I had a short haircut. And, I think I see some CURLS starting to spring into action at the ends of a few strands. 💁🏻 At the beginning of this week I had a dream that I had my full, long, curly head of hair (with only a few gray strands!). In the dream, my hair had been there all along—it was just up in a bun & all I had to do is take it down.

It's kind of a bummer that it's all going to fall out again from chemo because it PAINSTAKINGLY grew back after I got it shaved in November. But I guess this is a preview of what my hair will look like again in July. And I can always hold out hope that this time it won't fall out 🤞 (#denial)

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemosideeffects #chemostrong #baldisbeautiful #fighter #warrior #survivor
OMG I have so much hair!!! And I loooovvvvvvve it! ❤️ My friend took this picture at chemo this week because I had no idea what was going on in the back of my head. First of all, it's really DARK. It's pretty white on the top & sides. And it's so THICK. If you were standing behind me in line, you wouldn't necessarily know that I had cancer & might just think I had a short haircut. And, I think I see some CURLS starting to spring into action at the ends of a few strands. 💁🏻 At the beginning of this week I had a dream that I had my full, long, curly head of hair (with only a few gray strands!). In the dream, my hair had been there all along—it was just up in a bun & all I had to do is take it down.

It's kind of a bummer that it's all going to fall out again from chemo because it PAINSTAKINGLY grew back after I got it shaved in November. But I guess this is a preview of what my hair will look like again in July. And I can always hold out hope that this time it won't fall out 🤞 (#denial)

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemo #chemosideeffects #chemostrong #baldisbeautiful #fighter #warrior #survivor
Antioxidants 🍫

@dovechocolate Dark Chocolate Heart(s) at my Chemo Valentine's Day party on Thursday ❤️❤️❤️ #valentinesday #galentinesday #latergram #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #valentinesdaychemo #chemoparty #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #chocolate #darkchocolate #hearts #love #loverules #fighter #warrior #survivor
Antioxidants 🍫

@dovechocolate Dark Chocolate Heart(s) at my Chemo Valentine's Day party on Thursday ❤️❤️❤️ #valentinesday #galentinesday #latergram #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #valentinesdaychemo #chemoparty #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #chocolate #darkchocolate #hearts #love #loverules #fighter #warrior #survivor
When I was younger I used to really like Valentine's Day, and then I didn't anymore because I was always single & it reminded me of what I didn't have & that I wasn't where I wanted to be (in a relationship), & then I came to peace with it by just ignoring it.

When I went back to chemo last week, I had a choice of going on Thursdays or Fridays. I picked Thursday because I didn't want any long weekends to interfere with my scheduling, & also so I would be at chemo on Thursday, February 14th.

I planned a Chemo Valentine's Day party, and I chose @erinmckennasbakery for the sweets. I haven't been there in 10+ years (when it was operating under the name Babycakes NYC), but I picked it because it's vegan & gluten-free, & I wanted to be able to offer the chemo patients (including myself!) a little healthier dessert option.

I got in touch with them, & they donated 2 boxes of delicious baked goods for my party—for me, my Chemo Squad friends who come to chemo with me week after week, the nurses & staff there, & the other chemo patients getting their treatments. 
I'm happy to report that my party was a smashing success, and it was my best Valentine's Day yet—spending the day at chemo, celebrating the true meaning of the word love. 💕💕💕 Thank you to @erinmckennasbakery, store manager Irene, & the rest of the staff there for making my Chemo Valentine's Day party extra special! Your generous & delicious donation was very much enjoyed & appreciated. ❤️ #valentinesday #galentinesday #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemovalentinesday #chemoparty #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #erinmckennasbakery #babycakesnyc #community #loveandsupport #love #truelove #fighter #warrior #survivor
When I was younger I used to really like Valentine's Day, and then I didn't anymore because I was always single & it reminded me of what I didn't have & that I wasn't where I wanted to be (in a relationship), & then I came to peace with it by just ignoring it.

When I went back to chemo last week, I had a choice of going on Thursdays or Fridays. I picked Thursday because I didn't want any long weekends to interfere with my scheduling, & also so I would be at chemo on Thursday, February 14th.

I planned a Chemo Valentine's Day party, and I chose @erinmckennasbakery for the sweets. I haven't been there in 10+ years (when it was operating under the name Babycakes NYC), but I picked it because it's vegan & gluten-free, & I wanted to be able to offer the chemo patients (including myself!) a little healthier dessert option.

I got in touch with them, & they donated 2 boxes of delicious baked goods for my party—for me, my Chemo Squad friends who come to chemo with me week after week, the nurses & staff there, & the other chemo patients getting their treatments.
I'm happy to report that my party was a smashing success, and it was my best Valentine's Day yet—spending the day at chemo, celebrating the true meaning of the word love. 💕💕💕 Thank you to @erinmckennasbakery, store manager Irene, & the rest of the staff there for making my Chemo Valentine's Day party extra special! Your generous & delicious donation was very much enjoyed & appreciated. ❤️ #valentinesday #galentinesday #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemovalentinesday #chemoparty #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #erinmckennasbakery #babycakesnyc #community #loveandsupport #love #truelove #fighter #warrior #survivor
Happy Valentine's Day (and Galentine's Day) from me & my Chemo Squad! ❤️❤️❤️💋 ❌⭕️❌⭕️ #valentinesday #galentinesday #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #love #loveandsupport #xoxo #fighter #warrior #survivor
Happy Valentine's Day (and Galentine's Day) from me & my Chemo Squad! ❤️❤️❤️💋 ❌⭕️❌⭕️ #valentinesday #galentinesday #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #chemosquad #squadgoals #friends #friendship #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #love #loveandsupport #xoxo #fighter #warrior #survivor
Human hair for kids 💝 What a wonderful experience to have gotten to fit her for a perfect hairpiece 😇 #gaylawigs #chemostrong #kidswithchemotherapy #kidswithalopecia #childrenwigs #humanhairwigs #superhero
Human hair for kids 💝 What a wonderful experience to have gotten to fit her for a perfect hairpiece 😇 #gaylawigs #chemostrong #kidswithchemotherapy #kidswithalopecia #childrenwigs #humanhairwigs #superhero
Getting ready for my Chemo Valentine's Day party tomorrow... 💕💕💕 Wrote out my valentines with a teal pen from @sharecancersupport, a nonprofit organization for women with breast or ovarian cancer. 🦋

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #valentinesday #galentinesday #chemovalentinesday #chemoday #chemoparty #chemostrong #chemosquad #love #fighter #warrior #survivor
Getting ready for my Chemo Valentine's Day party tomorrow... 💕💕💕 Wrote out my valentines with a teal pen from @sharecancersupport, a nonprofit organization for women with breast or ovarian cancer. 🦋

#ovariancancer #fightingcancer #ovariancancerawareness #valentinesday #galentinesday #chemovalentinesday #chemoday #chemoparty #chemostrong #chemosquad #love #fighter #warrior #survivor
Back at chemo to finish the job! 💪✨💕 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #latergram #chemogram #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #fighter #warrior #survivor
Back at chemo to finish the job! 💪✨💕 #ovariancancer #fightingcancer #latergram #chemogram #chemoday #chemo #chemostrong #fighter #warrior #survivor

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