I just started Tamoxifen treatment on May 15th….the 25th anniversary of my first date with my husband. Who knew 25 years ago that I would be here…in good ways and in some not-so-good ways? But, I am here and life is good.
I am a fairly intelligent woman and I understand the benefits of Tamoxifen. I will be sure to tell the arresting officer that when he slaps on the cuffs for excessive speed……hot flashes when driving….I was down to a t-shirt with all the windows open driving 78 miles an hour on the NYS Thruway. I must have had a somewhat deranged look on my face because I passed at least three troopers taking radar. Not one of them came after me. It must have been on their wire, “crazed looking, and late 40’s woman in an Audi. Proceed with caution.”
The hot flashes are back in full force. They are stopping me from enjoying any vices I have left: Starbucks Coffee and wine. Red wine is out of the question totally. White wine is tolerable. My laundry is growing daily because I change my outfits…not for a date, not for work, its 3am, where am I going? Just my hands on this laptop are making me sweat. Tom Selleck never gave me this kind of heart rate increase and heat.
I promise not to torment you with another countdown. Tamoxifen is a five year plan….that’s a lot of days. God willing it will do its magic and I will be here for decades to come. I have not read the rest of the side effects and I don’t think I am going to. However, I do have a few insights on how the drug company could have written the “patient education”:
Directions: Take Daily; doesn’t really matter when….the effects are the same.
Common uses: To torment and inflict odd (and not in a good way) feelings in breast cancer survivors and high risk women. To protect the ‘girls’, second base, the pontoons or whatever it is you call them.
How to use this medicine: Definitely DO NOT DRINK ALCOHOL, coffee, hot soup or do not take in summer heat or in front of a wood burning stove. Better yet, move to the Antarctica.
Caution: You may become a crazy person.
Overdose: Are you crazy? Why would do that?
Common side effects include but are not limited to:
Hot flashes: Duh, I know.
Weight Gain: like I am not already depressed enough?
Stroke: I think I already had a mild stroke since I cannot remember where I hide presents. I am afraid I am going to forget how to get home from the supermarket.
Blood clots: what’s next…the plague, locusts?
Cataracts: beautiful…now I am a blind, heavy, hot (and not in a good way) woman.
Good news: No chances for gynecological issues…all my parts have been removed.
So there I have laid out for you the Tamoxifen Blues. I may have to figure out that countdown just the same…..