Chemo Brain, Schmemo Brain

Well, tonight I am remembering to make an update.  I’ll take that as a sign that yesterday’s chemo is starting to work its way out of my body.

Rob – 2, Constipation Chemo – 0
Yesterday I had my second round of constipation chemo.  While my brain isn’t the only thing its slowed down, I’m still on the regular side of things.  I think I’ve won this second round.
Rob – 2, Platelets – 1
I’ve received platelets 3 times since I’ve been here.  The first time went off without a hitch.  The second time ended with an allergic reaction and me blacking out.  Today I received platelets for a 3rd time and I’m pleased to say that everything went fine.  I was pre-medicated before I received them and they ran them over a longer period of time.
And the Powerball is…
WBC – 0.4
Hemoglobin – 7.7
Platelets – 10 (this is why I got platelets today)
ANC – MIA
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You
Lindsey and I received a gift last week.  Two of my coworkers came over with a gift wrapped box.  It looked very similar in size to boxes I receive that contain dress shirts, shirts, or pants.  At my age, those are all great gifts.  As I unwrapped the box and opened it up, I quickly realized it wasn’t clothes, but then I wasn’t sure what it was.  Oh the boxes inside were clearly labeled, but just because a box says something, doesn’t mean that’s what’s in it.
So I proceeded to open one of the boxes inside, positive that there was something else inside and this was just a funny joke.  Nope, the contents matched the box exactly…my coworkers had gotten me an iPad.  But wait, there’s more.
Still inside the box was yet another iPad.  Lindsey and I were beside ourselves not quite sure what to say.  Two iPads are an amazing gift, but we also know that there are plenty of people not getting any gifts while they are being treated.  It seemed like too much. We are now eternally grateful for this gift for a very good reason.
While I’ve been in the hospital, I’ve tried to Facetime (video chat) with the girls a few times.  It’s been difficult as it’s hard for me to see them and they can’t really interact with me on an iPhone screen.  Now with the iPads, that’s all changed.  When I talk to the girls my face looks life size.  I can see them clearly and they now interact with me via the iPad.  They wave, they poke, they laugh, and most touching, they walk up to the screen and give me a kiss.  Thank you so much to all my coworkers for this gift.  Words can’t describe how it’s helped to lift my spirits and keep me in contact with my kids :*).
Another Gift
Today I received a basket with many small giftwrapped items.  The note attached clearly states I can only open one a day.  While it’s tempting to open more, I’ll stick to the rules.  Today I opened up a brain teaser that came in colorful bag.  Ah yes, get the kid with chemo brain a brain teaser.  Well played 😉
Thanks Tatum!
The other week I received a Tatum Bag of Fun.  Tatum is a Riley kid who has been cancer free since 2009.  She makes sure that all kids in Indiana who are undergoing chemo get a bag of fun.  Tatum must either know I’m a kid at heart, or she’s seen my boyish looks as she sent me a bag.  I imagine Lindsey’s connect to Riley played a role as well.  The bag has a lot of fun puzzle books and came with some movies as well.  We’re putting it to good use.
Mom Says Hi
My mom came to watch the kids yesterday and on the way home today she stopped by to see me.  It’s always nice to get a hug from your mom, and when it comes to my mom, it’s never one hug.  We walked my route around the unit so she could see where I do my laps.  We also talked about how this is just another journey in my life.  It’s always good to see my mom.
I Need to Get Out More
One other thing I’m thankful for is that I’m not going stir crazy.  I didn’t really think about it until now, but this is the longest I’ve ever been confined to any one area.  I basically spend 22-23 hours a day in my room.  When I’m not in my room, I don’t venture any further than my unit.  The last time I was outside was the night of December 7th and that was long enough to be wheeled from the ambulance into the hospital.  I suppose my accommodations are kinda like a studio apartment and I could never live in a studio apartment.  Shoot, when I lived by myself I got a 2 bedroom 1600 sq foot apartment.  For being here going on two weeks, I am doing really well mentally and I am thankful for that.
A Duck Dynasty Prayer Reexplained
Some people have asked what a “Duck Dynasty Prayer” is.  In the simplest terms, it is just my prayer at the end of the day.  The idea for it came from a show call Duck Dynasty.  I had never seen Duck Dynasty before being admitted.  It’s a reality show about a bunch of rich rednecks who still do redneck things.  At the end of every episode the family gathers around the dinner table and says a prayer.  I figured if they can end their episodes with a prayer, I could end my daily caring bridge update with a prayer as well.  Calling it a “Duck Dynasty Prayer” is just me being me.
End of the Day Prayer (See, Doesn’t “Duck Dynasty Prayer” sound better)
Father God, thank you for the support I receive on a daily basis.  Thank you for the prayers that are being lifted up around the world.  It’s very humbling and I only hope I can be as supportive of others as they are of me.  Be with my family as the continue to sacrifice while I am in the hospital.  Be with my coworkers and friends.  Thank you for words of wisdom from friends new and old.  Thank you for another day.  Amen.

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