I decided to start today's post with a brief description of how I'm feeling and then let you know about my treatment. As I write, I'm sipping on a Guinness Draught Stout. You can take that as an indication that I'm feeling top shelf (perhaps not the best way to say I feel great with a goalie living in the house).
The effect of the meds I got from my new friend Ivi on Monday will be wearing off by now so my appetite is not was it was yesterday. My weight this morning showed as slightly over 83 kg (183.5 lbs). Yesterday in the morning I was 81.5 kg (179 lbs). That's a pretty big increase for 24 hours so I suspect my scales are more an approximation that absolutely accurate. Perhaps it's time to get better scales. I'd love to get the Fitbit unit but that's way beyond what's in my piggy bank right now.
But I do feel good. I have some nausea pills I take after a chemo treatment for a couple of days. I have a schedule from the clinic. I took the last one for this week at 8:00 am. I have not had any nausea so it appears the meds are working as intended.
I don't seem to have as much trouble swallowing today. Since last August, I've been cutting my food into tiny pieces, chewing like crazy in advance of swallowing and taking a drink of water after each swallow. It takes me about four times longer to eat what's on my plate than everyone else at the table and that's with a reduced portion size. If I rush, it just gets stuck. I suspect we're all familiar with how it feels when peanut butter gets stuck. These days everything can be like peanut butter. A gulp of milk or water can clear it usually. A few weeks ago, I was taste testing a tiny piece of beef for the guys' pre-game meal and it got stuck for almost four hours. It was so bad I went to the Emergency at Dartmouth General as I wasn't sure I could get it to clear on my own. When I took a gulp of water at home, it came right back up so fast I almost choked. It was such a shock that I suspect I left a brown smear in my shorts. I didn't dare check. I was too nervous to make a second attempt in case I did choke and give Janet a big problem to solve. It was busy in the emergency room and we waited about an hour to see the triage nurse. By the time I got in, the beef cleared on its own and passed into my stomach. Had it not, someone would have to go digging. Yikes!
So I am eating well. I feel well. I am sleeping okay but like most people my age, the only great sleeps seem to be connected with a couple of adult refreshments. Today a friend suggested I might ask about cannabis oil; I've been told a couple of drops on the tongue help people sleep right through the night.
If I can get a great sleep, will it be necessary add a new accessory under my pajamas?
Today was a radiation treatment. The folks in the clinic recognize me already so from beginning to end, a treatment takes less than a thirty minutes. They line up the machine with the tattoo dots on my chest, belly, and ribs. Then they take a three-dimensional x-ray to compare my position with previous days and make minor adjustments so I'm in the same location. Then the radiation unit make three rotations bombarding my tumor from all sides.
I plan to take my camera and a stand on Thursday and record a video of a treatment session. It won't be the same as being on the table but you'll see how the process looks from beginning to end. An as a bonus, you'll get a quick glance of my bare chest which looks pretty good these days. Just avoid checking my waist where there's a lot of extra skin. It is ugly and unlikely to ever shrink. Ah well, years of abuse can't be undone overnight. Anyone got an unused Groupon for liposuction?
As always, thanks for reading. All you folks following my journey are terrific.
Peace, Love and Laughter
PS – There are now about 25 people who decided to take on the personal challenge of doing an activity every treatment day and/or reducing their portion sizes at meals. That's terrific and there is always room for others to join in. If interested, send me a note with details what you have in mind to firstname.lastname@example.org … I plan to do a blog with a summary this weekend. This could prove to a decision which saves your life in the future as I believe climbing on a bicycle about three years ago will help me get over my current big bump.
Let me finish repeating a quote I like from Paulo Coelho, author of The Alchemist:
The world is changed by your example; not by your opinion.
Be an example for your family and friends. It might give them incentive to become more active and re-think their diet in a positive way. Who knows, you could end up with a work-out buddy.