Monday, October 19, 2009

Carrot juice cocktails and to hell with quarantine

Ever since learning my WBC count was super low I've been on a mission to find things I can do to encourage the # to rise and to protect myself from possible infections or viruses particularly with that crazy H1N1 flu going around. Bob got on the internet in search of ways to up my number and concluded that I needed to up my protein intake which I could only laugh at since my daily intake is already between 66-80+ grams of protein (that's a lot, as recommended by my guru holistic med doc at UCLA). Then a friend of mine told me she had just seen Dr.Oz on TV talking about how carrot juice helped with the production of WBC so I got busy finding a way to tolerate adding carrot juice to my daily routine. ICK. Don't get me wrong - I love carrots. I enjoy snacking on them. But I just can't deal with drinking them. So I posted a request to Facebook requesting carrot juice recipes that would help disguise the carrot juice and I received lots of great suggestions. Today, I finally arrived at the combination I could actually enjoy - it's equal parts carrot, apple and pineapple juice. So, if it ends up not helping to raise my count I will at least not be upset about having to gulp something awful every day. But I got a late start with it, unfortunately. Since getting home from last Tuesday's appointment where I learned about my crashed WBC count, I've been on a self-imposed quarantine to avoid infections, colds, flu and the like given my increased vulnerability. It was much easier to stay home when Bob was home and could run out and get things I needed and to keep me company so I wouldn't feel isolated or lonely. But he had to head out to work Saturday morning so I faced a weekend of cabin fever with a toddler teething molars (B-R-U-T-A-L). I didn't even get to noon on Saturday before I found myself packing Cooper into the car to get out of the house. It was innocent enough, at first, as I decided I'd play it safe and stay in the car and just drive around while Cooper napped. I drove for over an hour as Cooper snoozed and then when he woke up I couldn't bring myself to just go home and found myself headed for Babies R Us to buy a play yard gate thingie. I decided that if I was going to be stuck at home we needed this thing so that we could create a big play arena in the yard which would prevent Cooper from running off to areas of the yard I didn't want him in, so that I wouldn't have to chase him since I don't have the energy - I am out of breath just carrying him up or down the stairs. Anyway, I was super careful, didn't touch the shopping cart, brought hand sanitizer and used it after touching anything, etc. I figured this outing scratched the itch to get out of the house and I'd stay put the rest of the weekend. Wrong. I managed to resist the urge to go out only until about noon and then we were up and out again and this time I headed to the food market to pick up a few things. To minimize my exposure to crowds/germs I went to a market I don't usually go to, specifically because they are never ever crowded - not even on the weekends - because they're so ridiculously expensive (Bristol Farms). I could only get a few of the things I needed because their prices were so absurd and then we headed home. On the way home I spoke with my friend who asked if it was safe for me to go out to dinner and I couldn't resist the opportunity to stay out of the house a bit longer and we headed to a local spot to meet up. We went early to avoid the typical dinner crowd and had a great dinner. Thank you, Tara, for helping me escape the miserable self-imposed quarantine tonight :). I'm hoping that my paranoia about catching something served me well enough the majority of the week and that I won't have reason to regret my little outings this weekend. Oh, I nearly forgot to mention that on Friday night I had such fun on Facebook with my online girlfriends who saw my post about the #beatcancer initiative to raise money for cancer research and they initiated a "post-off". Several of us chatted via our Facebook status updates - posting frequent updates that included "#beatcancer" to drive the fundraising effort. It was so much fun and I'm in awe - daily - of the amazing love and support sent my way from friends and family who believe in me and want to do whatever they can to help me and so many others who are touched by cancer. Thank you so much for all that you do to help me get through this. Finally, I have a special prayer request. Please pray that my white blood cell count has risen enough, and that my platelet count has remained high enough, to resume chemo treatment this week. I go back in on Tuesday at 11am pacific time, to have my blood tested and if the results are satisfactory then to resume completion of chemo cycle #5b. Thank you so much for your prayers and positive thoughts!! Love, Julie


  1. I'll pray your white blood cell counts rises to continue treatment! We raised over $3000 at our Breast Cancer Walk this past SAT in Mizner Park!!! :)

    Miss you,


  2. I will definitely say an extra special prayer for that blood cell count, Julie. You are doing so well! I can't believe you managed take care of a 1-year-old the entire weekend--by yourself! You are amazing. Just amazing.

  3. Yes cabin fever sets in pretty quick ... I too am trying to stay away from germs and such but end up going out here and there.

    Wishing you all the best with the WBC.

  4. let's just say, that I find myself randomly praying for your WBC through out my day. With all of us praying it's gotta work!

    I need your wrist size J-you make measure a bracelet that you like the way it fits, or just measure your wrist-JUST DO IT-0don't ask why... HEE HEE HEEEEEEE.