Man, I Need a Break

May 12th, 2006 at at 4:34 pm by Brian

It’s been quite a week since last we spoke. Let’s see how much I can recall.

The biggest news is, Barb and I have found a new house and our offer’s been accepted. We’ve got an inspection on Monday, so sometime after that I’ll put up some photos. We’re both tremendously excited, as there’s so much that’s absolutely perfect about this house. When we bought our current abode, it never quite felt like home. First, we had a good solid year’s worth of work we had to put into ti just to make it liveable. Then with its location and such, we always knew that we’d be moving at some point once it came time to be havin’ little chilluns. This new house is it. The Last House. At least until the kids all grow up and we get moved to an assisted living community.

One of the many truly excellent things about the new house is, it’s ready to move in. It could use a little paint on the walls, but that’s IT. We can immediately start settling in to this place. We don’t have to rip the kitchen down to the bare studs before we can cook anything. We can move our boxes and furniture into the house, unpack the boxes, stash our stuff and STOP! I cannot put in to words how amazing that is. Let me see if I can do it with a picture.

Me in our old kitchen.

This, to me, is the one photo that typifies everything we’ve gone through with this house. There are SO many more that do an equally horrifying job, but… well, let’s just zoom in a bit here.

The eyes have it.

Yes, I think the look in my eyes says more than the rotted floorboards could ever say.

Cancer-wise, life has really sucked as of late. I’m done with the chemo, but this one has finally done me in. If I go up or down the stairs here, I have to rest wherever I wind up for awhile before I can even think about making the return trip. My pulse races like I’ve been running a marathon and I’m just as out of breath. All from one flight of stairs, taken very slowly. This really sucks, to say the least.

I went to the doc’s yesterday to get checked out because of it. Actually, I was taken to doc’s ’cause Barb had to leave work and come take me. I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to actually drive myself there and back. I’m just that tired.

They drew some blood and my red cells are okay. Low, but workable. My neutraphils, however, were in the basement. These are the things that your white blood cells are based off of, so it’s a key as to your immunity from illness and infection. They start to worry a little if your count gets down to 1500. Mine was at 400. So now I have to stay away from groups of people and children, wash my hands like I have OCD and wear a mask if I’m feeling energetic enough to wander out into the world. Fortunately I’m too tired to make it to the front door let alone go out it, so I don’t have to worry about the mask too much for now.

The medical folks are thinking this might all be a reaction to stopping the prednisone, the steroid that makes up the last “P” in MOPP. Dr. D gave me another prescription for the pred that we can taper off this time, as well as an antibiotic to help head off anything bad I might catch until my counts come back up.

So now I just take pills and lie around the house. It’s not as glamourous as they make it seem in the movies. the next thing on my medical agenda is a PET scan on Friday the 19th. This will be the one that determines what we’ll be doing next.

One more good thing about the new house – it’s 19 minutes away from Yale Medical. That means if our timing works out right with the closing and the stem cell transplant, I won’t have to stay in a hotel after the SCT! That would so rock.

I think more than anything, I need a cancer break right now. I would love to just have one day where I didn’t have to think about it. No pills to take. No aches and pains and tiredness. I’d stay away from the hodgkin’s forum and eat whatever I want. I’d go down to my new workshop and build something. Spend the day making something instead of thinking about dying. Yesterday was my one year anniversary. I’ve been fighting this thing for a whole year and I’m tired of punching.

Hockey-wise, things have been even worse. The Devils are down 3-0 in their series against Carolina. I blame myself, as you can see from my playoff picks. Everyone I picked is getting their ass handed to them. The Avs were swept, the Devs are down 3-0, the Sens are down 3-1. Edmonton’s putting up a bit of a fight and hanging in there, down 2-1, but still. The way the Devils are looking right now, I would not be surprised in the least if they lose on Saturday and are swept. Being the team they are and on the cusp of elimination, I would also not be surprised if the win on Saturday. But the way they’ve been playing in this series and, more importantly, the way the Hurricanes have been playing, I don’t see the Devils making it through to the next round. Still, the playoffs are where the miracles happen, right?

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