I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and is enjoying this new start of a new year! Our Christmas was great! The girls were lavished with toys from Santa, a little too much if you ask me! But that's Santa, for you, always overdoing it! My chemo treatment was the Thursday before Christmas and I had a Neulasta shot on the Friday. I wish I could say that the worst was over by Christmas morning . . . but not so much. The nausea this time was bad. I tried some anti-nauseau medicines, but they did not really work. John finally bought me some lemons and that seemed to do the trick. I thought I was better on Christmas Eve and got the girls together to bake cookies and wrap some presents. Then, maybe it was the craziness of "helping" Santa until 2am in the morning that broke me down. On Christmas Day, sometime in the early afternoon, I began having my menopause symptoms again - hot flashes, sweats, itchiness, irritability (baaaaadddd!), random teariness. I felt like my body was a torture chamber. I made it through dinner with Mom and Jan and the whole fam' and the present opening chaos. Then by bedtime, I was aching everywhere. I decided to change my hormone medicines back to my orginal one. Immediately, the heat left me and I slept pretty decently. I don't really like this original HRT all that well. It's called the CombiPatch and it's a patch of estrogen and progesterone. I tried it right after my surgery and it worked for a while, then I started having night sweats with it, so they changed me to good ole Premarin and Provera, the old standby's in hormone replacement therapy. They were working great and I still don't understand why they stopped working at Christmas. Maybe the hustle and bustle was too much. Who knows! Anyway, I called the dr to see what else I could try and she said she could up my dose of Premarin, but if that doesn't work then I'll need to see a specialist in hormone replacement therapy. And I thought my dr. WAS a specialist, but apparently not! They just gut you and take away the hormones then send you on your way - See ya! Buh-bye! Here's a complimentary fan!!! I'm going to give it a month and if I still don't feel the way I want to, then I'll go for the specialist. Right now, the main issue I'm having is itchiness. It's in my hands and feet mostly, but goes to my legs and arms. It's hard to describe the sensation since it's not so much a surface skin itch that lotion or Benadryl cream could fix. It's more of a circulatory or nerve thing - tingly, stinging, deep underneath the skin. I usually just scratch and rub until it stops. Mom and I were talking about how with her cancer, she is having to get used to a new "normal" for her. Her body is not the same as it was before cancer, even though her mind is. She is having to change her entire mindset and accept what her body can and can't do. Pretty tough for a busy lady like my mom. But the same thing applies to me. My body no longer has hormones, but my mind remembers what I felt like with hormones. I've got to accept that I will never feel the same as I did before surgery and I will have to get used to some discomforts now and then. Yeah, easier said than done!!! Mentally, I'm beginning to imagine life after chemo - my hair growing back, no more needle sticks, no more nausea, energy, energy, energy - but life after hysterectomy doesn't excite me quite as much! For those of you taking hormones or going it cold turkey, I would love to hear what worked for you. Once this chemo is done, that's my next goal - getting as close to my old "normal" as possible! By the way, I have two more treatments, Jan. 10 (one day after my 38th birthday!) and most likely, Jan. 31. I hope to start February with chemo completely behind me! I pray, Please God!