Just Like Riding a Bike

With the exception of my brand spanking new port, everything else about my stay has been routine.  It’s almost like I’ve done this before.

Pre-Admission Phone Calls of Assurance
Late last week I received information about my port placement from the hematology clinic.  I was told to not eat or drink after 7a, that my port would be placed at 11:30a and that I would be admitted afterwards.  I also received a call from Interventional Radiology, which is the department that places my port.  They told me to not eat or drink after 5a, to arrive at noon, and to have someone to drive me home.  Yep IUH, we’re not quite in sync with what we tell our patients.
O’ Port Thirty
Being a good patient, I did not eat or drink in the morning.  I figured I’d get my port placed around noon and order a little lunch afterward.  As healthcare would have it, I didn’t get into the procedure room until around 2:30.  By the time they were done placing the port I didn’t make it back to my room until 5.  Thankfully I had texted Lindsey to order my food, so I didn’t have to wait that long.  However I ended up having lunch and dinner within about 2 hours of eachother.  I might still be a bit hungry.  Too bad they don’t have a midnight buffet.
The Verdict
Lindsey and I met with Dr. Cripe this morning.  While he can’t tell if I’m in remission until I get kicked in the junk (aka, get a bone marrow aspiration), he did say we were “trending” that way.  He also said I could be out in public more as I have the energy, so thankfully that should get me out of the bubble of the house.  Once my numbers come back up after this treatment, Lindsey and I are going on a date!  Speaking of numbers…
And the Powerball is…
I had labs drawn this morning and in the words of the Fresh Prince “they was looking very good, and so was I. Just might say”
WBC – 2.7
Hemoglobin – 11.3
Platelets – 129
ANC – 1.8
Blasts – 0
I added on blasts, but it won’t be a daily value.  Blasts are immature cells and anything above 0 isn’t good.  Blasts are an indication of Acute LymphoBLASTic Leukemia.  So the good news is that I don’t have signs of recurrence at the moment.  The bad news is my poor little blood cells are about to get beat down by some chemo.
Cycle B
My chemo regimen exists of two cycles, A and B.  I completed 1 round of cycle A in December.  This admission, I’m doing my first round of cycle B.  Dr. Cripe told us that cycle B usually knocks people out more than cycle A.  I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve though, so cycle B had better watch out.
Chillin with My Chemo
As I type this I’m getting a 12 hour infusion of methotrexate.  I figure if we just abbreviate it to “Meth” there would be a large number of hoosiers who wished they had Leukemia and could get meth for free at the hospital.  Maybe I need to find a chemo drug I can abbreviate as “pot.”  This could be a fun game.
Anywho, I get the 12 hours of meth and then tomorrow I get Leucovorin and Cytosar.  The cytosar is the other chemo and I’ll get 4 doses of that total.  The interesting thing about cytosar is that there is a very small possibility of Cerebellar Toxicity.  The symptoms of cerebellar toxicity are very similar to being drunk.  So twice a day I get to take a drunk test and touch my fingers to my nose and write repetitive sentences among other things.  Not sure if I’ll have to walk a line or say my ABC’s backwards.  I’m practicing up just in case.

Leucovorin isn’t a chemo.  It’s called a rescue drug.  Basically after the meth has started killing cells, they give me the leucovorin to protect the healthy cells.  So the meth kills the cancer (DIE CANCER DIE) and the leucovorin helps prevent the meth from killing my good cells (live little neutrophils, live).  I find it interesting because it’s basically like setting your house on fire and then using your garden hose to try and save some of your valuables.

A Duck Dynasty Prayer
Thank you God for great support.  Please be with my friends on the unit.  Some of whom have names I’ve seen before, and some of whom I don’t recognize.  Be with those I know who have also been recently hospitalized and please meet their needs and heal them.  Thank you for Dr. Cripe and his staff.  Please kill this cancer.  Thank you for another day.  Amen.

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