Thursday, March 26, 2009


Just thought I would drop a quick note to say that it seems as if my body has started bouncing back from the months of poisoning. Although I still get a little winded, I have peach fuzz blooming on my melon, my intestinal motility is coming back around and my energy levels are returning. There may be some poetic parallel with Spring's arrival so now that I have voiced the sentiment, I shall claim it.

I'm looking forward to a good third week in anticipation of my last treatment. As with most milestones in my life, I tend to avoid any fanfare because I have other milestones to reach before I can be confident that this little lymphoma hurdle is history. I may draw a bold line on the calendar when they remove my port. That just might be the proper time to say, "good riddance, you tester of will, you disruptor of plans, you sweller of body, you mortality questioner, good riddance"

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


St. Patrick's Day and the official color of lymphoma, Lime Green, works today more than any other day. A woman came into the infusion center with a bright green wig and I have to admit that I was a little jealous.

The rest of the treatment went off without a hitch and I even took a leisurely stroll on the outdoor deck as promised. Noisy downtown.

All is well despite the fatigue today. I trust this will go away quickly and then I will look forward to THE LAST ROUND. One more to go baby!


Met with the Onc this morning before Lymphemo #5 and all is well. We spoke about my weight gain and he said that it isn't a real issue but i will need to do some work after I get through all of this...there are a lot of folks at the infusion center today. We didn't get started until 11am so I suspect that we will outlast most of my fellow infusioners today. The Rituxiamab is flowing,

We are expecting warmer weather today(mid 60s) with lots of sunshine and I hate to miss that shot of vitamin D. I may haul the Flo-Gard 6201 out on the balcony just to say I did...

I have mentioned before that the benedryl makes me quite tired and during my semi-reverie, Liz came by to make some adjustments and suggested to Laurie that they cover me with a blanket. "He always turns yellow," I heard them say. Suddenly images of characters from the Simpson's started flooding into my head. Ah, chemo brain.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Evening Thoughts Pre-#5

To begin, the family friend I mentioned in the previous post is doing much better. She has a row to hoe but I'm not sure how long it is based on the sporadic reports I have received. When friends are ailing, the instinct is to rush to their side but having worked through this chemo process has given me new insight. My introverted side spends long hours pulling details from my past just in case they are needed so I want to give her the solitary benefit of that experience too. It is rather strange to take stock of your personal history considering I may have shuffled more than halfway through this mortal coil. Chances are very high that there is a lot more shuffling to go but a cancer scare can stop you in your tracks and cause you to feverishly contemplate all that has been. My extroverted side wants to share that peek at the abyss and the moment that life begins to get very wide and deep when length is threatened.

Speaking of lymphoma, I AM feeling the treatment. Not in a debilitating way but it is definitely affecting my stamina. Yesterday the weather was so nice, I decided to pull a wheelbarrow up to the house and start Spring clean-up. I removed an old satellite dish from the side of the house and ran out of gas. Boom. After 15-20minutes of removing bolts and screws, my hands were shaking and I couldn't grip. After a rest, I hauled the wheelbarrow back to the barn and returned to the house a little winded. This was a bit of a shock. To be brutally honest, I'm a little disappointed that it hasn't been harder. I really geared myself up for the fight of my life only to be surprised by how quickly my routine absorbed chemo like just another task. No big deal. Knock on wood. People usually comment on my appearance and demeanor because I don't look gaunt or withdrawn nor have I been totally derailed from my daily activities at all. I count myself lucky that my constitution has held fast and while writing this post, I'm actually getting a little nervous for some reason.

Two to go dammit.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Blood Draw Tuesday

Paid another visit to the LHCP for pre-bloodwork before Lymphemo #5. My hemoglobin has dropped a couple of tenths each week and even though it is low, I'm still above the blood booster or medication stage so Liz is pleased with my numbers. I expect this will hold up through next week so we are good to go. Liz also mentioned that I may see some fatigue start to set in over the next few weeks and not to be alarmed. After walking around the ever struggling Centerpointe mall with Sage this weekend looking for a just the right birthday gift, her insight now makes sense. I was sweating bullets and rapidly losing color.

My college roommate was in town to get a photo of a horse bridle for a stereoscopic art project and we had some belly laughs over cancer, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Commiserating with an old friend and revisiting youthful indiscretions, if done correctly, is one of life's great pleasures.

A longtime family friend was suddenly stricken with a terrible infection this weekend and has been on life support. We paid a visit on the way home from my blood draw and she was finally coming out of the fog. They were anticipating her removal from the ventilator today and she is hopefully on the mend. It seems that every other post involves a story that makes my cancer journey seem mild. As I mentioned early on in this blog, cancer is a sloth. It gives you time to plan your defensive tactics so when friends suddenly fall ill or are involved in accidents, slow burning lymphoma is certainly a highly reflective hurdle. If your spidey sense tingles a little when sending me all your positivity, just know that over the next several days I am working hard to divert your thoughts and prayers her way.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

It’s like this and like that and like this and uh*

big apocalypse now clean

Finding it hard to be profound…my energy level has taken a hit over the last several days. Noticed a big gap in my right eyebrow yesterday so hair loss continues…I’ve stopped counting; not really, I haven’t been counting.

Heard about another past workmate with a recent breast cancer diagnosis so the stats keep mounting. I’m bouncing some of your positive energy her way.

There is light at the end of the tunnel. I certainly realize that I’m on the back half of this journey and I continue to receive comments, cheers and dinners from all of you and that has made a huge difference. Here’s to 2 more treatments. Hip Hip. Hop.

*Nothing but a G Thang – Snoop Dogg/Dr. DRE