I really misjudged Friday’s post. I was intending to emphasize good news but hadn’t considered all the death talk you’d have to weed through to get there. If I unsettled you, I am truly sorry. I am fine, readers, I promise, and I did not intend to worry you. Maybe this post will help convince you.
At my Cancer Centre visit last week, I anticipated positive feedback because I’d been feeling so much better lately. More energetic, no medical crises, a-okay. Sure, I still seem to be walking around with my fly undone most days–please alert me if you notice–but these lapses are minor.
I still have leukemia and polycythemia; my genetic mutations have not reverted back to normal. I know the doctor will never be able to tell me that. Blood disorders aside, I’ve somehow developed more platelets and more red blood cells in recent weeks. I needed these counts to rise before Dr. Blood would consider that new chemo I mentioned a while back. Remember the pill I didn’t want to take if I could have a second round of radiation, but then wanted to take once more radiation was kiboshed? I’m terribly fickle.
This chemo, an addition to my current drug arsenal, won’t cure anything but may keep my polycythemia-related symptoms at bay. My still-quite-large spleen may even shrink. The doctor is hopeful that I may start to feel better. More energetic? Less sick? Better able to remember to do up my fly? Whatever “better” means, I’ll take it.
But there are potential side effects. When I start a new chemo, a Cancer Centre pharmacist sits down with me to outline those potential negative effects. I learned that this pill may depress my red and white blood cells and my platelets so I may again: a) become anemic; b) develop an increased risk of infection; and c) bleed out and die. As kind as these pharmacists are, they leave me feeling like I’m taking my life in my hands by ingesting their miracle drug.
Big deal. My other chemo threatens all those things and I’m still here, almost 3 years later. I can do this! Heck, I may even feel better if I don’t a) become anemic; b) get an infection; c) bleed out. But the doctor will stop those bad things from happening by monitoring me closely over the next while. Yes, I’ll be hanging out at the lab a bit more, but only for short visits since I’ll be sure to make an appointment.
But first, I asked the doctor for a short reprieve. J. and I were hoping to book another getaway this weekend, the only summer weekend Marriage Commisioner J. isn’t uniting anyone. (J. has found the best gig ever, by the way. She barely needed a shingle for people to beg for her services.) So that’s the fantastic news. We’re going away, thanks to Triple D.’s partner R., who will graciously dog sit while her special friend helps other clients. (Now do you understand why I haven’t given you 3D’s number?) And I get another few weeks for my blood counts to rise before their upcoming onslaught. Then we’ll see what happens. I’m hopeful and even excited.
So please don’t worry about me. Everything is great here. And you know I’m a terrible liar.