SCT Day20 – quick update

Today is day20 after the transplant (day0 being the day of the transplant) and day22 after the melphalan.  I’m still needing to use my electric razor to shave some of the nubs so my prediction (second prediction) is still wrong!  It’s there, feeling like sandpapaer, but not hurting when I touch or sleep.  The last time I lost my hair (after Cytoxan) I don’t remember the timing, though I really could just go back and look through my blog for that info that’s just too much work. :)  But the last time I was definitely down to a Pledge shine without any razor.  I felt like it went faster but I was more ‘shy’ last time (believe it or not) and wasn’t posting to god and everyone back then!  I am guessing that I will be down to the Pledge shine in a week or so but am not making any predictions any longer.

Biggest issue I’m having right now is sleep, or a lack thereof!  To be truthful, I don’t believe that I am sleeping any less than prior to the transplant but that was on a normal work/life schedule.  Now that I am supposed to be sleeping I just can’t seem to do it, more specifically, do it through the night.  I’ve been on essentially the same schedule for about a week.  Whatever time I go to bed (last two nights have been just after 23:30) I am up around 02:00 (potty break) and then around 03:00 or 04:00 and then  again around 05:30.  I will take another potty break at 05:30 and then can get back to sleep until around 06:30 but I really should be able to sleep from 02:00 to 06:30 and that part is eluding me.  During these time periods I find I may be in bed, eyes closed from 05:30 to 06:30 but I’m probably only sleeping for 20 minutes.  I will pop into dream state and then awaken.

After I first got back home I was on this schedule but I also had a pounding headache, usually in the back of the head, that didn’t help me sleep.  The hair was also a problem as every time I rolled over I would feel 50 hair-needles poking me in the head.  I think that, lack of sleep, hair needles, and being tense due to both was causing issues in my neck/head region causing the headache.  The headache wouldn’t last into the day but would potentially return at night, mostly due to too much time in front of the computer or just lack of activity (watching swamp people for 7 straight hours!)

The headaches are gone – the other issue was cramping or soreness in my left calf and around or behind the knee.  This has been much better recently but it was a big hurt that I just had to deal with unfortunately.  I did find that an hour drive yesterday, back from CT, caused my leg to be sore and if I then walked, at my normal pace, not the post-transplant pace, my calf would cramp up and become sore.  If I stopped for any period of time (i.e., long enough to order a skim latte from Sbux) my leg was fine, but the minute I started pushing it, the cramp would begin again.  It was a bit sore last night but not that bad.  What I had been doing, for both the leg and the neck/lower head region, was using Olbas oil, a Swiss massage oil that can also be used like Vick’s for colds.  Great stuff and I would highly recommend for cramps, etc.  It’s strong like Tiger Balm but is an oil and not a wax.  It smells (and will clear your nasal passages) like Vicks and like either, PLEASE wash your hands after applying.  It will sting if you absent mindedly rub your eyes or touch other, sensitive parts!

My @ss is also killing me from sitting at this chair in front of the computer in a completely un-ergonomic position on a hard chair with a small cushion.  For this reason, while typing this update, I’ve put in my order at The Container Store for a new desk chair!  As I’m going to have to be working from home for awhile I need something I can sit on!!!

That’s all for now – I am working on a post re; What I Would Do Different Next Time – I know there are a number of you getting ready for a transplant  in the near future and you want this info.  I will try and get something up in the next day or so!  Once I have my new chair! :)

thanks, as always, for reading!  Bill