Tuesday, July 08, 2008

It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Lately, all I have had here is text so I thought I'd take a picture this morning from my back door to brighten things up a little.

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Yesterday, I had my second chemo. The Seattle Cancer Care Alliance parking lot was plum full so I was not the only one. We have a lot of sick people in Seattle. It never ceases to amaze me how young so many of the patients are and both men and women. My treatment team all seemed to meet with me yesterday--a nutritionist, a social worker, and the oncologist nurse. Everybody is asking questions and frankly, I have never had to describe to so many people in my life about my bowel movements. Geez!

Afterwards, I was sent home with my friend, the fanny pack pump which lives with me for three days. It reminds me of those high school health classes where the students have to care for a doll for a certain period of time as if it is a real baby. You have to take it with you everywhere and mine is actually hooked to me so I can't walk off without it. We got home about 5 PM and after about an hour, the pump sounded an alarm. I opened the fanny pack and it was blinking, "ALARM. AIR IN LINE. ALARM!" Oh my gosh--what are we supposed to do? Nobody told us this would happen and my pump from the last time never did anything weird. Dave called the 1-800 number and talked to a young woman who knew nothing. I, of course, am wondering if a big bolus of air is going to enter my blood stream and end this whole journey right now. The young woman told us a guy would call. A guy did call and told us to check the line to see if there were any bubbles. No, we did not see any so he walked us through restarting the pump which we did. An hour later, "BEEP. BEEP. BEEP." This time we did not call but did the same procedure to restart. Again, after 8 PM, the stupid thing went off again.

I'm thinking, "I just had chemo. I need to sleep through the night. This is unacceptable." Dave called the number again. The young woman told us the guy would call. The guy called and sympathized that we did not want to be up with the baby every hour of the night. He agreed to come to our house----all the way from Redmond and even though Dave gave directions, the guy did the unthinkable and used his car GPS system. I have written before on this blog how mapquest and car GPS systems send you to a dark place on the edge of Big Gulch blockaded from our street. Anyway, he finally made it here about 10:30 PM and provided me a new pump which seems to be ok. I must say, I am a little paranoid and am carrying the fanny pack in the same exact position as he left it. The dog just drooled all over it while I ate some crackers and that didn't seem to set it off so I think we are ok.

Every couple of days, I have a friend stop by. I find I enjoy the conversation. TV and reading get tiresome. The other day my friend, Rosa, came for a visit. She is Peruvian and forgave us for traveling to Chile. She refused our Chilean Pisco but did have a gin and tonic with Dave. (Actually, I have lost all taste for alcohol or wine and frankly I can't stand the smell of it. It makes me sad because I did enjoy my glass of wine in the evenings. Oh well.) We discussed our children and family matters. Kaley is her daughter's best friend. I met Rosa years ago when Lucas and her son were in the same kindergarten class and the little boys became good friends. When she was about to leave, I explained that Lucas had the Roman Catholics in Chile praying for me. I asked if she could one up him on that. Well, it just so happens that her parents in Lima have gone to the same Roman Catholic church for years. AND, it happens to be connected to a convent with which Rosa is quite familiar. I'm not quite sure all of the reasons but if you knew Rosa, you could just imagine. She said absolutely she could outdo Chile. The nuns in the covent for whatever reason are particularly powerful and she would pass along my plight to her parents. I hugged her and thanked her. I knew she'd come through.

Prayers. I believe in them and I'll take them wherever I can get them!