Monday, September 8, 2014

Good Humor, Finding Chemo

 A drizzling rain met me as I made my way to the car for the trip to the Cancer Center for the first of seven Chemo injections this afternoon.  These seven are the fourth and final cycle for this drug and what happens after this is anybody’s guess.

It was raining just enough to make the roadways slippery to the unsuspecting, unaware driver and as I entered the coastal highway from the city a Rover on my left decided she had to be in front of this line of incoming traffic, so she gunned it and as the traffic light at the next intersection changed -idiot that she is - tried to stop. She couldn’t.

Maybe afraid of getting a ticket for running a light, or sheer panic, she slammed on her brakes and the rover did a triple pirouette (fortunately not turning over) and coming to a stop across 2 lanes and facing oncoming traffic.  There was, however, no applause.

I slowed down and stayed in the farthest right lane and got out of there as fast as the 4 cylinders could go. I was not going to wait around for the ending of this unnecessary madness. I will never understand why drivers do the stoopid things they do.

Without delay I arrived at the center and the Labs were done almost immediately. I took the pre-meds and waited for the lab results. Meanwhile the Chemo cocktail was being mixed and I got to relax as the pre-meds took hold.

The CBC wasn’t good, although the white count is good. Everything else is low.  I’m scheduled for one unit of whole blood tomorrow morning.  Why not 2, I asked. The doctor is concerned about the iron level already in my body and wants to maintain levels just where I am over the basic limits and keep me there until the Chemo does its thing…or not.

While awaiting the Chemo injections, a text from friend Sasha arrived with an invitation to cocktails at Happy Hour tomorrow or Wednesday afternoon. I immediately text back, ‘yes, either day.’  He’s been trying to take me out for HH for about a year, maybe more. Schedules, family, kids, sickness have always been in the way.  Maybe that will end this week.

We’ve not been able to have a one-on-one chat in a long time.  He needs it, I can tell.  I need it, too.  He needs to know what’s going on with me - the whole story.  I want to be the one to tell him. 

The Chemo syringes arrive and 2 of my favorite nurses are to administer the goods. The injections are administered simultaneously (and at the same time) on opposite sides of the body.  I always tease and say things like; “It’s like synchronized swimming, you know, think of Esther Williams.”  This always gets them going.  

Then as they count down and do the deed, I comment on whether they were in unison or not. If not, I jokingly admonish the one who was off time. There’s always the “I promise I’ll practice and do better next time” and we all know that next time, will be tomorrow. Yes, it’s a game and we laugh and it keeps us all a little closer to sanity for a few minutes.

There’s always a slight wave of nausea following the injections, so I rode that out, then drove home.

Good news is no immediate uglies to report.  Bad news is the damned rash has already made an appearance. The itching is becoming unbearable. So this is what that one-pound jar of the special cream is for, eh?  Lather everything and do it now.

I’m done. It’s going to be an interesting night. During each cycle something bizarre has ravaged my body and it’s been a different plague each time.  Let’s see what this cycle has in store for this tired old body now. 

Transfusion at 8 am, tomorrow.  Hopefully, Happy Hour with Sasha at 5 pm.  May it be so.

And so it goes.



  1. I know you don't need an "arm chair " doctor ...............but the expensive jar of special cream never worked as well as Jergens Healing Lotion for me does when the issue pops up with me.

    1. Many thanks, Roger. I'll give it a shot. Whatever works.

  2. actually 2 transfusions tomorrow - one blood, the other alcohol. methinks the alcohol one will be better.

  3. Replies
    1. I wonder if your rash is similar to the one I'm having now. I've never had this kind of rash before; very itchy red bumps. I've been advised that they could be everything from newly hatched fleas to bed bugs (NOT!). I think I've narrowed my current malady down to an allergic food reaction to cherry tomatoes, which I've stopped eating.
      Ain't some of the drivers on Route One just verwonderdful? What is it with some of these folks, racing to be at the head of the line? And I find it's almost always women. Maybe it's their testosterone kicking in. Be thankful that one didn't nail you. Just think, the irony of doing your final curtain call on Route One.


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