Day +11

The shape of my day here seems pretty well-established. At 5am a nurse comes in and draws blood. They like to have the counts early so that they can adjust my medicine dosage for the day in response to the lab report. I then fall back to sleep and am roused at 7am. At which point the first of many daily measures is taken. Blood pressure, temperature, pulse, and weight. I’ve been having trouble retaining weight due to diarrhea caused by a gastro-intestinal bug. The day before yesterday I was down over 7 pounds from my weight at entry. But we may be winning the battle against bug, and I’m now only two pounds away from my entry weight.

After the measurements, the first of three morning infusions starts. I try to fit in 20-30 minutes of cycling and 15 minutes of dumb bell work next just before breakfast. The infusions are usually over by breakfast or by the end of breakfast. Then I am untethered from Ginger Rogers for a while. I chat with the janitor while he cleans the room. And then while the nurse or orderly makes my bed, I take shower. Today the nurse shaved my head first. With my earring I now look like Mr. Clean. Or maybe with the glasses it’s more like Michel Foucault. Come to think of it, I have to wonder if Michel Foucault modeled himself after Mr. Clean.

After the shower I lie on the bed while the nurse changes the dressing around my catheter. That’s a process that lasts 15 to 20 minutes. When that’s all done it’s nearly 10:30 or 11am. At which point I either respond to e-mail, read, or nap. The last few days napping has prevailed. Lying on the bed while the dressing is changed tends to induce a nap. The doctor visits once a day, and it’s often during this time.

Lunch comes at noon. And there is more measuring of temperature, blood pressure, and pulse. In the afternoons I’m untethered, and I do some combination of the reading, watching TV, and blog writing. This is usually the high point of my energy for the day. Once a week the sports trainer or the oncological psychotherapist pops in and we talk. After dinner, temperature, blood pressure pulse and weight measurements are taken again, and there are more infusions for an hour or so. In the evening I have to organize my medication for the following day, after doing that it’s some combination of the reading, watching TV, listening to music, and blog writing. Before going to bed I get one or two more short infusions and sometimes a shot in the stomach. Lights go out at some point between 9 and 10pm. The night nurse checks on me periodically throughout the night. And then the drill starts again at 5am.

 

Day +12

Day +10