Only 2 more days of chemo left this week… Monte is taking me today! Yay! This round is kicking my butt (AKA my boney ass)! I am experiencing what is known as Cancer Related Fatigue. While I was living in Houston, I saw an Occupational Therapist in the PT department to learn how to deal with this fatigue. I think it is worse this time because of my other issues going on right now. Here are a few facts about Cancer Related Fatigue. It can be caused by a number of things…. cancer, chemo, radiation, drugs, sleep disorders, emotional distress, just to name a few. Here is the thing: after periods of rest, the fatigue still remains and can even become worse. This greatly affects your Activities of Daily Living (ADL). Here is how it affects me. I carried in a few light weight bags of groceries Tuesday from the car and it felt like those bags weighed about 50 pounds apiece and I felt like it was iffy if I could make the few steps into the house! Also, after walking a few steps, my legs are burning and feel extremely tired. The prednisone I am on contributes to my Cancer Related Fatigue. I have an energy “bank” that I pull energy from for my daily activites, remembering that when its gone, I’m done. The way to deal with this is to 1) Prioritize activies and use the energy for things I really want to do. 2) Pace myself. Stop and rest before I begin to feel tired. 3) Plan and organize, alternating hard tasks with easier tasks. 4) Positioning. Sit when possible, avoid reaching and bending. I have this interesting chart that compares different activies and the amount of energy that is required to perform the activity. One that really shocked me is that a standing hot shower uses the same amount of energy as roller skating, mowing your lawn, or washing the car! Bizzarre huh!?! I think I have mentioned this before in a previous blog, but MD Anderson has “The Place…of Wellness” and they enhance cancer patients’ quality of life (including Cancer Related Fatigue) through yoga, tai chi, art, guided imagery, nutrition classes, music therapy, massage, cooking demonstrations, and meditation. I think they actually offer more than 75 programs! Isn’t that the coolest thing!!!!! MD Anderson is an amazing cancer center that offers treatment for any and every possible thing that can happen to a cancer patient….that’s only one of the reasons why it is the number one cancer center!