We are everywhere.
For those keeping score at home, last Wednesday was chemo day. Why Wednesday as opposed to the usual Monday? Well, our eldest was drafted into the air force Monday last, and we spent the morning taking her to her drop-off point. And, while this outlet isn’t about military life, politics or child-rearing, I can tell you I have never been prouder, stood taller or felt part of something much greater and more important, than when I watched her walk through those gates to take her place in the most just, humane, and best-trained defensive force in the history of everything.
Alright. Back to me.
Wednesday is so much better than Monday, and for so many reasons. Not only is the week almost done, but with the weekend on the horizon, parents of soldiers start to get ready for their kids’ return. (See how easily I slipped into that role?)
In terms of chemo, the day care chemo ward is a much, much calmer place. Plenty of room to sit; no wait to be seen; nurses who are even more patient, attentive and caring than ever. The reason is fairly simple: most people who have chemo for GI-related cancers all have to have – as I do – a take-home infuser for about two days. Starting on Wednesday means getting unhooked on Friday afternoon, a time when local nurses’ stations aren’t open. Since the day care unit only sees patients (for the most part) on Mondays and Wednesday, that means the overwhelming majority of GI cancer patients elect to start chemo on Mondays versus Wednesday.
Ah, you ask: How do you get so lucky as to get unhooked on Friday afternoon? Simple. We asked our family doctor to write an order for a home visit by a nurse to unhook me. So, at 2pm Friday afternoon, there’s a knock on our door from one of our friendly, neighborhood nurses, Ella. She’s answered the call and is there to unhook me. And the best part? Turns out we’re neighbors! She lives about a five-minute walk from us.
Good-bye Monday and hello beautiful Wednesday!
Oh! We also saw our good friend Miri Gabbai (see last post). She was so grateful for the money collected from several of our friends. This woman is great. She does everything herself; pays for everything out of her own pocket. And, the day care nurses (as well as several letters of authenticity from hospital staff and directors) indicate, she absolutely is the real deal. So great to see her and a wonderful feeling to help her in her mission.
I don’t follow many blogs, and those I do are all related to cancer and stomas. Two posts this week tickled me, and for different reasons.
First, the Cancer Curmudgeon. She has breast cancer and despises the cottage industry that has grown up around it. Her posts are thoughtful, poignant and sometimes angry. This one, though, about The Cure, just made me laugh. And if Komen goes after her, I’ll be happy to be a character witness.
Another blog I follow is at morethanyourbag.com. This is a young woman with a stoma who, admittedly shills stoma-related products, but she does offer some fantastic insight into being a 20-something with a stoma. Anyway, a recent post of hers completely humbled me. As my friends know, I pretty much rock my stoma. I own it. I don’t let it rule me. I’ve embraced my super-cool untucked look, even when wearing a suit. But, holy cow, check out this bodybuilder. Perhaps I shouldn’t share it with you all, lest you think less of me. If nothing else, please don’t show this to the flight attendants whom I guilt into helping me with my carry-on bags!