I kind of feel like a Seattle Seahawks fan 13 seconds into the Super Bowl last Sunday. Things are looking good, but we’ve got a ways to go…
Today was my appointment with the oncologist to see how the previous three rounds of chemo went. Having arrived back home last night, I was all ready to go to the hospital this morning. Laying in bed this morning listening to the news, I thought I heard something about a strike at a hospital. Apparently, the doctors haven’t been getting paid their full salaries, so they decided to go on strike.
As my daughter asked: “How can they go on strike? Don’t people get sick?”
Well, yes. But it’s not a full strike. Rather, they operate on a weekend/holiday schedule, where the ER remains open, as do certain critical wards, including chemotherapy. So, I called my oncologist’s nurse and asked her if my appointment was still on.
“No,” said she.
“Can you tell me what to do?”
“Make another appointment.”
“How should I know?”
“Do you have any idea how long the strike will last?”
Now, I’ve been trying very hard of late not to get too upset about the small stuff. But, I’m pretty sure an appointment with the oncologist to hear the results of my latest CT and blood test qualifies for “not-so-small stuff.” And I made it known that I was less than pleased, having hustled home yesterday specifically for this.
Then, I sat down to draft an email to the oncologist, reminding her that we’re not talking about some elective procedure. (Never mind that Tammy pointed out that none of the oncologist’s patients are dealing with anything trivial…)
No sooner did I send off the email than the phone rang. It was the oncologist. (She had a terrible cold, so it’s a good thing I didn’t have to see her in person.) Apparently, her nurse called her and suggested that perhaps a call to yours truly was in order.
On the whole, the news was good.
Per the CT, there are no new tumors. The existing ones didn’t get any larger and the tumor marker associated with my particular cancer went back down to acceptable levels.
The flip side is that I do need to continue with chemo, this time four rounds of two weeks each. Apparently, there is no mercy when it comes to beating the crap out of cancer. There is no comfort in a TKO; complete annihilation and unquestioned victory is the goal. Kind of like Seattle last week…
This time, we’ll be going back to all infusion with no pills. (Interestingly, my chemo treatment dates are February 10 and 24 and March 10 and 24. Nice synergy.) This means on Monday I go in for infusion and get a lovely take-home infuser for an additional 46 hours. Then, at the appointed hour on Wednesday, I will have the infuser removed.
I fully expect the week of treatment to be tough, but hopefully, the “off” week will be manageable. I’m not sure what this will do to my work and travel schedule, but I’m lucky enough not to have to worry about it too much. I work with great people who are more than willing to cover me as needed.
So, there you have it. Movement in the right direction. All in all a good day, so far.