Hello all, from my perch on 6E, UCLA Ronald Reagan Medical Center.
Day 4 of my visit. 5 days until I get my stem cells put back in.
So far, so good. I’ve been handling the chemo pretty good, or so the doctors tell me. A little nausea. A little headachy. A little worn out at night. Apparently, the first and last days of chemo are the worst. The middle days are pretty benign. I get about half way through the day in good health until a bit of queasiness sets in. Right about…10 minutes ago. So, I’ll be friends with the porcelain god for the next few days.
They tell me that next week is the roughest. Once my counts drop I’m going to get visited by all sorts of side effects, most of which I’ve had before. So it is kind of like expecting old friends. Or old enemies, I guess. Mouth sores will be the biggest problem. Nausea. Lots and lots of fatigue.
I do my laps around the floor. I’m not allowed to leave the wing, so they are pretty quick trips. I’m sure they will get longer as I slow down. They also gave me an exercise bike, which tells me that they think I’m young and active or they think I’m fat. I’m so full of saline right now, I’m leaning towards the latter.
I’m also pushing to get my room switched to the other side of the floor. I have a pretty terrible view of the other wing of the hospital. And people can see in my room at night as they wait for the elevators. I’m not doing anything exciting for them to see…but still, the other side of the hospital has a view of Westwood and the ocean in the distance. The sun makes a big difference and since I’m here for an extended stay, I might as well push for the best comfort possible.
So, between the computer, the DVDs, books, exercise bike, PS3, magazines and other assorted oddities…sounds like paradise? Except for the constant stream of doctors and nurses, beeping IV poles and essentially being held prisoner in this room. At night I get some anxiety when I try to fall asleep. As long as I focus on the short-term, things stay together. I can’t think about tomorrow or next week or two weeks. I can only keep my eye on pieces of sunshine and know that I’ll be out there soon.
And we’ve been decorating – Ezekial and Eliana brought me a framed picture of a frog and a rainbow. I’ve got photos of all the dogs and cats and kids in my life (which I have to keep explaining to the nurses that none of them belong to me). I’ve got inspirational phrases and a calendar to count the days. And one photo of Golda Maier (which needs no explanation…right?)
Like home. Only with more poison.
I’ll try to check in again before things head too far south next week.
Be well. And thanks for thinking of me. I’ll see you soon.