Yesterday I had a bone marrow extraction. That is basically where I lay on my stomach, they stick a needle in my bone, and peel it a bit like an apple core. Sorry for the graphic narration. They then extract fluid from it. This is to gather information on the expansion of the Cancer. It isn’t my favorite procedure, but I’m able to get through it OK.
It is currently 5:32 am and I just met with the Doctor. I had been enjoying my 3 hours of sleep. Today I am to have a Lumbar Puncture. That is where they take fluid from the spine. Also a real fun one…. But if it gets me any closer to the end goal, I’m all in.
They need my platelets to be around 50 for the procedure. Right now mine is at 47. What this means is that I will have my first blood transfusion. Not gonna lie, it is a scary feeling. Just having someone else’s blood put into me…. Of course they have to tell me all the warnings, as I sign a release form of liability. I have never appreciated blood donation more than today though.
Thank you to all who have donated blood and continue to donate. It is necessary for my survival this morning. It’s 5:46 am and they have just begun the transfusion. I’m now attached to a bunch of stuff and typing with two fingers. The nurse has stayed the entire hour to make sure that there are no reactions. I am trying to take my own advice by just trusting the process and having faith in it. It is still naturally a little unnerving.
I haven’t left my room in 6 days but have found a bit of a rhythm. Having a general routine is good for your sanity. Thank God I have this laptop. It has allowed me to travel far outside this room. Yesterday I was in Colorado, Sacramento, and San Diego. Technology has been a nice friend through all of this.
The doctors have informed me that if all goes right, that I will be sent home next week. I will do an outpatient program. That is exciting to think about. Also a little strange because you start feeling so safe at the hospital. If there is a problem I just push a button and there is a nurse. Being outside on my own with Cancer will be a new learning experience.
I am told that the whole program, when successful, takes three full years. The main intensity is in the first 7 months. Its 6:12 am now and no bad reaction to the transfusion so far. Phew. I do have an itch on my back that I can’t reach. Other than that, I’m good. The Team has said up to this point that everything is going really well. That in this stage it is honestly my mindset that will help determine my success. I’m glad that I have that in check.
I haven’t had too much nausea. The main feeling in my body now is that it just doesn’t have the strength of a month ago. I have lost 20 pounds this month and notice that my muscles dangle a bit more. My healing process is similar to that of a senior citizen. That is to be expected though, as I am on steroids and taking Chemo. I often march in place in my room and use arm bands to work out a little. Might as well be the skinny, buff guy with Cancer. Ha.
I find myself missing holding April’s hand or just touching feet when watching tv on the couch. Those simple things are so precious. They hold so much more weight now. It’s interesting that what I look forward to most when I go home is touching feet… Home, by the way, will be at my folks’ house until we work out what the new balance will be. We are figuring out what each person’s new role will be in this new scenario. Figuring out how much care I will need.
So it has come full circle. I will be staying in the same house that I grew up in as a kid. I must thank my amazing parents for their love and care. I can see my Mom is ready to once again put on her cape and go into super mom mode. My Dad is ready drive to Canada for me to pick up a bottle of water if need be. Nice to have them in my court for sure.
My outlook remains nothing but positive, but I wouldn’t be honest or human if I didn’t have these occasional ultra realistic moments where it really sinks in what I am going through or will go through. I think about how much my life has taken a completely different direction and my lifestyle is being reinvented. Every so often the shock kicks in. I really do have Cancer. So Crazy…. 6:26 am and i have 15 minutes left on the transfusion.
Ready to start my new day and make it a happy one.