Continuing with posting old email updates, this was sent out on March 9, 2012.
Hello and I hope everyone had a happy Purim!
My apologies for being a few days late on this update, so let’s get right to it.
This past Monday was a treatment day and the Chemo Gods must have been smiling down upon Tammy and me. Our day started with finding a parking spot right where we needed one! Now, for those of you unfamiliar with Hadassah Ein Karem, the parking situation is less-than-ideal for anyone with less-than-perfect knees. The hospital sits on a hill and the parking lots are essentially tiered. As an oncology patient, I get access to two small, restricted lots. Let’s just say there are way too many patients for the few spots that are available.
Anyway, it was a good start.
Next we were off to a visit with the liver specialist to determine why my liver numbers have been going up. Our appointment was for 10:00 and when we got there, there were about eight people ahead of us. Turns out, our guy started his day at 10:00 and we were #1! Everyone else was waiting for some other guy. (Maybe that doesn’t bode well for our guy’s reputation, but let’s ignore that for now…) As he suspected a few weeks ago when we met with him the first time, the elevated numbers are completely the result of the chemotherapy. It’s something we need to keep an eye on, but there is no cause for concern, at this point. We know this because, when the doc suggested it would be nice to see past liver test results, I was able to call my entire history up online, right from his office. The numbers clearly show an increase after chemo started…
Next we were off to the chemo treatment room. My appointment was for 1:00 and, since it was 11:00 and a two-hour wait is usually involved, we decided to go check in and see if there was time to go grab lunch instead of waiting in the over-crowded waiting room basically avoiding eye contact with others.
So, I march up to the window, the receptionist greets me by name and calls the nurses’ station. “Go on back; they’re waiting for you.” Now, let’s remember the last time I heard that line. It was in October, when I went for my CT and the technician came right out after and told me to go right to the ER, where they were waiting for me. We all know what happened next.
It turns out, they really were just waiting for me, with the only private room held just for us (or so the nurse said). Anyway, we were so pleased that Tammy brought back a big box of ruggelach for the nurses. Man, what a feeding frenzy!
Treatment passed without incident and, because we went in earlier than expected, we were able to get out earlier than expected.
Yesterday we celebrated Purim. Friends invited us to a very large and lively meal with about 60 people in all. Funny thing is, we didn’t know there was going to be such a crowd until two days before, when our hostess called us up to make sure we were OK with so many people. As my avid readers will know, I like to wear a surgical mask when I’m on an airplane or other places where people are packed in. That would be kind of odd to do in someone’s home. So Tammy and I hatched a plan: I’d dress up for Purim as my favorite hero – Dr. Ronit Grinbaum (the messenger of God who got to cut me open twice in one week)! Allofasudden, wearing a surgical mask wouldn’t look so silly! Turns out, I didn’t need the mask as I was sitting right by a window and the room was well-ventilated. Nonetheless, a pat on our back for such ingenuity.
Today is Friday, and usually I start to get tired by Wednesday. No difference this week, except the exhaustion is even more palpable and lingering and, it seems, nausea is catching up to me. Apparently there is a cumulative effect of chemo in the body and yesterday and today I’m feeling it. Thank God tonight is Shabbat. I’m looking forward to as much relaxation as possible so I can get on DL269 tomorrow night to go visit my friends and colleagues in NYC, whom I think miss me.
As always, thank you for your good words and well wishes.
Wishing you all a restful Shabbat.