October 7, 2009

welcome to the cancer club!

today was my 'welcome to the cancer club' initiation...i had my port put in...this little plastic thing in my chest will be a daily reminder of cancer. it's alright though, i could use a reminder, i think i forgot a few times this week that i had cancer. for that i thank my students...they're college students, employees, friends, and they have developmental disabilities...but they won't remind you of that last one, they just focus on life. they're such a constant source of inspiration for me...i aspire every day to focus on life instead of it's obstacles, just like they do. they're wonderful.

anyways, the surgery...super easy. for that, i credit the wonderful team that i had today. seriously, a year ago i hated doctors...today, they were wonderful and fun? crazy. thank you for that, cancer. i can never express enough appreciation for doctors that can laugh at the situation. it's the little things.

today's 'cancer is funny' event...i was excited for the end of the usual old IV story (tie a band super tight on your arm, and then just hope the person putting the needle in can find your vein the first time...it gets old) which the port will be the end of. so i cheered a little when the last IV was put in by the pre-op nurse. that would be too dull to be the end of it, though. and, since no one likes a dull end to a story, we wrote a different ending...i get into the operating room, and my IV stops working. seriously? i wasn't sure they could even 'stop working'. the anesthesiologist tells me we'll have to do another IV. no worries, that's easy enough, right? not quite. it took several needle sticks, a few attempts and two doctors to successfully get an IV going. if i had any hesitation left about if a port was the right way to do this cancer business, it's gone. i've got four bruises from IV attempts to remind me of that while the soreness from the surgery wears off. all the while, the most wonderful collection of doctors and nurses enjoying the irony of the situation with me. it's the little things, like their willingness to laugh, that may seem insignificant, but makes all the difference in each little experience with cancer. there was a choice to focus on the little inconvenience, or laugh about it...we chose laughter, and i wouldn't have wanted it any other way.

and, finally, my medical update. i feel excellent! on day five after treatment, i was at work, and on day seven i felt 'normal' again. it's nice to have the first one out of the way, and this time i'll know that the nausea won't last forever (i wasn't so sure last time). i went in to have labs yesterday to check my counts (white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets) before having surgery, and i found out my counts were 'excellent'...yay! that's great news, especially since they still have a few days to come up before treatment two. also exciting, my bone marrow biopsy showed 'no evidence of lymphoma'! that's what we expected, but it's the first 'clean' test i've had done in the last three months, so it's exciting! so, everything is fantastic...off to treatment two on friday, then i'll have an entire cycle out of the way! each day is one day closer to putting this behind me, and every day feels like an accomplishment. it makes me appreciate every day, yet another thing i have to thank cancer for.

No comments:

Post a Comment