Friday, October 12, 2007

happyish birthday

Yes, today is my birthday. I looked back over the blog and saw that I was hoping today would be the last of the chemo and radiation therapy. Well, it will be a week from today and all in all I am not a complete wreck as I thought I might be.

This had been a rough week until once again I took charge (with a great deal of help from Mom) and went out of my way to get the liquid Oxycodone Dr. Cheston had prescribed/suggested/hoped/gambled would help me with the intense pain trips to the throne had become. She instructed me to take the stuff about half an hour before getting out of bed for my morning edicts to the kindgom or half an hour before I felt I'd be so royally seated. Though it had taken some rational yet insistent argument with the local Kaiser pharmacist, a hundred miles round trip later through the worst DC's traffic system could muster, I had my little bottle of the next thing to try and was praying it would work.

Lo and behold it did. It's no business as usual by any stretch, but the edge is very dull now and I am not leaving in tears or shaking so hard that I need sleep. Because the stuff takes effect so quickly and is essentially a substitute for one of the Oxycodone pills, I have backed the pills down by one and will ween myself off of them with purpose when therapy does come to an end. They are addictive and though I do not feel myself wanting for them, I do want to make sure I don't.

This all happened just in time for Joanie's visit from Idaho. She arrived Wednesday night very late and has been filling in for Mom since yesterday afternoon once she got over a little jet lag. The morning liquid Oxy does me so well I do not need to immediately rush home after radiation to get some breakfast... though that is still a better start to my day than not getting any! ;)

Today Joanie took me in for the final full-strength radiation exposure. I learned earlier this week that the final week would be tapered off nice and easy. I felt bad having broken down in the doctors office when I just couldn't get them to adjust the field, but the news about the last week going to be lessened did help steel me for these last four days. They're done now.

Joanie and I celebrated with a little shopping and a realization that brick and mortar stores can sometimes just plain suck. I've wanted some new hiking shoes and I prefer to try them on to see that they look nice on my feet and fit well. Price is a not a major factor, but I don't even try on shoes that cost too much. There is no practical reason my mind accepts for such wildly different prices for shoes. When I thought I'd found a pair today for a reasonable price (what I now consider "reasonable" is also rather nutty) I got an immediate runaround from some English as a second language clerk who ran off with the shoes to get another box that said they shoes were nearly twice what the first box said. Funk that.

Joanie had been homesick for Chik-fil-A but another ESL below average student couldn't be bothered long enough to finish taking our order before hooting and hollering behind us for numba seex and numba toooo. Maybe it's the chemo or maybe it's hanging around all the baby boomers but man have I developed a sincerely bad case of please speak English-itis. Service settings really do demand clear communications, ya know?

My birthday wishes? A tuchus that doesn't keep me warm at night, adjustable camber plates, swaybars, and R888's for the BMW, and a normal life again. Or maybe that 1:8 scale Lego Ferrari F1 car... to go with the 1:10 scale one I built last year. :D


Anonymous said...

Happy birthday! Enjoy the thoughts that you are almost done with your treatments! You'll be back to "normal" in 2-3 weeks or so.

Someone suggested that I build/buy a stand that can be above me to hold a laptop while I'm lying in bed and to get a wireless keyboard to use with it. After the surgery, you'll never ever want to put a laptop on your stomach until you are fully healed. Of course, if your surgery is not an open surgery, as mine will be, then it might be more bearable.

Not sure if you use a laptop at all, but just some advice that I thought was reasonable for me....and possibly you.

Enjoy your birthday as much as you can! Nothing wrong in eating some cake! :-)

Greg in Wisconsin

John said...


Reading today's blog made me feel a bit better. You certainly seem to be doing better today than you did in the last posting. You are much more like the John I used to work with than the previous blog. Glad to see that you were able to track-down/get the new meds.

Keep up the spirits, let me know if you need anything.

Art G.

stripethree said...

Happy Birthday John! I'm glad to hear (errr, read) that you are doing better these last few days, hang in there!

Take care and hopefully I can catch up with you guys when I'm back in town for the holidays.

- Jeff

Scattered Gemini said...

Oooh, a birthday boy? Happy, happy Birthday to you John.

Glad to hear that you finally found the meds you needed and that it helps! Woot!!

GingerPyeJackson said...

Hippo birdie two ewe, snag a piece of cake for me.

Michele said...

Happy Birthday!!! Glad you were able to get the med. Keep blogging. We enjoy reading it, and I know it always feels better when you can vent.
Thinking of you everyday,

Tien-Seng Chiu said...

Happy Birthday! Hang in there, bud.

Brian P. said...

Sco, I just now heard about your struggle with cancer and was numbed by the news. Fighting cancer is a true battle and not for the weak of heart. If there is one thing I know about you, it's that you are a true fighter with a very big heart. You must keep believing in yourself and rely upon all your friends to provide you with additional support during the toughest times. I know you feel this struggle is taking you down, but you must believe you will get through/past it and win in the end. It is obvious from your blog that you have many friends that care about you and are praying for you as I am praying for you. With each breath you take, I hope you will consciously feel the power of all those prayers feeding you strength, energy, happiness, love, and goodwill. We believe in you! All you need do, is believe in us and the power of our prayer along with God's plan for you. I know you don't imagine this time as an adventure of any sort. In time, you will find that this is one of the greatest adventures of your life. There are many people out there in the world that need to hear of your adventure. Make a plan to tell your story. I know you've put most of it here in this blog, but you need to write it down in a book and get it out to the masses. Everyone needs to know of your battle and how you are fighting it. Bless you dude! You've got more going for you than you can imagine. - Brian -

Nittany Knits said...

Funny, Alex saw that Lego car and instantly thought of you :-)