Yesterday was chemo day, the second in the current series of four, and the chemo gods were smiling.
You know the day is going to go well when parking is simple. And, by simple I mean free and right in the lot next to the chemo outpatient department. Not wanting to jinx anything, we quickly made our way to the reception desk where it was confirmed that my blood test results were successfully received the day before (because this time I was smart enough to print my results in black and white, thereby allowing the fax transmission to be legible).
Since all was in order, I was sent immediately to the back where my blood pressure was taken and urine tested. Avid readers will remember that two weeks ago this wasn’t so simple; I had to redo the urine test three times. This time, however, I spent all morning drinking water in anticipation of the test and, I’m happy to report all went well on the first try.
That being done, we brought my file to the physician on duty whose job it is to make sure all is in order and the final of the three medicines could be ordered. From past experience, we know the wait can take some time, so Tammy and I left the area (Anywhere is better than the chemo waiting room.), and had an early lunch in the small shopping center attached to the hospital. (It seems most hospitals in Israel have both a shopping center and hotel attached.)
After about two hours of waiting, we went back, and just in time. The nurse said she was looking for us. All is good to go. I was told to take a seat. Problem was, there was only one recliner open and it had no privacy, at all. Not that I need privacy, I just like it, so I don’t have to make small talk and compare cancer war stories. I look to my right and, lo, there is an open bed! Asked the nurse if I could take it and she informed me I wasn’t in bad enough shape (good news) and that they wanted to hold it if someone who really needed it showed up.
So, I settled into my recliner and engaged in some small talk with the guy next to me (Actually, Tammy did. I pretended to be busy and generally annoyed…) who insisted on comparing notes. He was at another hospital originally. Came here due to some study. The other hospital was much nicer. He didn’t believe that I was more “experienced” than him in the wonderful world of chemo, seeing as I’m “so young.” At which point I wanted to smack him and say: “Imagine how I felt two years ago!”
The nurse came by to inform me they didn’t expect anyone any sicker than yours truly and that I could have the bed if I liked. So, the orderly changed the seats and alcoholed the mattress and I enjoyed yet another small victory. This was only the second time in all my treatments that I got a bed. (The previous time was also simply due to space and not because I was in “bad shape.”) Let me tell you: it’s like flying business class. I immediately relaxed, and I’m told I slept for about two hours.
And that was it. My last med was started by 3:30 and we were out not long after that. Came home and did some work until I conked out at about 10pm.
So far so good in terms of the side effects. You may remember that last time it was easier than in the past. No real neuropathy or severe nausea. I just had baseline nausea that I could ignore if I kept eating and, of course, our good friends exhaustion and diarrhea. This time seems pretty much the same, except my fingers and toes are bit more tingly than last time. Bottom line: who knows. I hope I feel good this week because if I do, I’ll likely go to NY next week to remind my coworkers that I still work with them. We shall see. The NY weather forecast will likely play a role, as well. There’s no way I’m willingly going into a Polar Vortex if I don’t have to.
In other news, it seems that Tammy may have picked up some sort of a bug, so things ought to get interesting around here in terms of logistics, seeing as I have to be careful around people who are sick.
Anyway, as always, thanks for your encouragement!