Thursday, November 5, 2009

Cycle 3, Day 2: The Cancer Social Club

Yesterday's treatment was a bit of a whirlwind. The infusion clinic was packed with people, the nurses short-staffed, but somehow we managed the trick of getting the one private room with a bed in it. Personally, I credit Joe's tendency to instantly become the teacher's pet, or the nurse's pet in this case. It could just be luck of the draw. But we've been lucky three times in a row...

The treatment itself went by very quickly. We were out of there by 1pm. Visitors made the time go by so much more quickly and entertainingly. Big thanks and love to Marty, Trish and Jessica for coming by and hanging out; to Hans for stopping in; to my lovely parents, Sari and Jean-Paul, for bringing lunch from Bi-Rite (such a class move), closing the party down with us, then joining us for coffee in the weak afternoon sun on our patio. And of course to Laurent. We were so happy to have him there with us. Amazingly full day.

Joe is feeling nauseous and hasn't gotten out of bed yet. We're both pretty nervous about an injection he has to give himself in about an hour's time. As you may remember, he landed in the hospital two weeks ago as a consequence of Neupogen injections he has to administer following chemo to boost the neutrophils in his blood. If his level of neutrophils drops any lower, they'll have to slow or stop the chemo - something we want to avoid. Anyway, they've given him ONE injection to self-administer this time to replace the 7, a pegylated (read: time-release, or so we're told) version of the same drug. There is the potential that he will *today* have the same bone pain that he had last round on the last day of injections. We dread this possibility.

Sleep still evades us, but we're delighted that we're arriving at the halfway point here. Joe looks great with a shaved head, and with everyone's loving support, we're coming through this with flying colors. It's still just so hard to comprehend that Joe has cancer (or had, we'll see after the 4th treatment, when they re-do the PET-scan). Such a crazy, ridiculous, random, stupid thing! Pondering that unknown makes me think about a quote from Rumi that a teacher shared in yoga yesterday, a few lines that sank in deep:

Be ground. Be crumbled.
So wild flowers will come up
Where you are.

You have been stony for too many years.
Try something different. Surrender.


Anonymous said...

Ariane - thank you so much for sharing all of this. One thing that helped us through similar times was Reiki - there are people who will come to your house for free to practice on Joe and even you. If you don't have time or energy to get a Reiki therapist, here is their mantra that really helped me. It still hangs in my office and reminds me:

Just for today:
Try not to worry.
Try not to be angry.
Honor those around you.
Earn your living honestly.
Show gratitude to everything.

Love you. Ariana

Marianne said...

LOVE the Rumi quote and the Reiki mantra. Hope the self-injection was successful. I may have a Reiki connection if you need one.

Love, love, love you!!!!