January 9, 2001

January 9, 2001|

Much has happened since I last wrote. I will try to detail all of the important things without boring you.

Mr. Anti-Climactic Day

Thursday was the day. The day I get my stem cells back. It’s the name of the whole procedure, so you would think it would be quite eventful. Actually, the opposite held very much true. Around noon, three nice ladies pushed a cart into my room with a bunch of ice buckets and frozen containers of blood. Supposedly, I would be overwhelmed by the smell, so I would need to keep lemons by my face at all times. I would also feel “weird” when they were injecting the cells into my catheter. I may even become nauseated and bring up the nasty.

I am proud to say none of the like occurred. I sat up in my hospital bed, grabbed a handful of cut lemons (just in case), stuffed them in my nose, read “The New York Times” and let the nurse practitioner pump me full of the cells. There were seven rounds of this. The first two I actually felt a little tingle in my throat, but that was it for side effects. The rest of the afternoon was spent having a “Nutty Professor Film Festival” (highly recommendable).

Let the chemo side effects begin

Friday the side effects of the massive chemo I had ended a few days earlier began, along with the side effects from the radiation from a week earlier. It was all on schedule. The radiation, because it was done on my lower back and abdomen area, now was causing me major cramps. The chemo was starting to really lower my blood counts, causing fevers. Holding food down became a luxury, as my stomach was just too weak to hold anything.

And continue…

Keep in mind that this all going on as predicted. The doctors here have done these transplants so many times that they know exactly what day I will have this side effect, what day I will yak, what day I will have a bad hair day, what day I will start feeling better. It’s almost not fair. But it’s the means, not the ends!

Sunday started the sore throat. The sore throat so painful it hurts to talk. (Sorry if I don’t return your calls). In addition, I am under doctor’s orders not to eat (as that would cause more problems with my digestive tract). So I am living off IV fluids. The amount of saliva I produce now rivals any spring water-bottling factory. Watching TV is painful too. All those food commercials, OH! The only thing I am allowed to eat is ice chips. I can tell you what though. I have never tasted water as good as I have tasted in my life in the past few days.


So I wait. Can’t wait for Saturday or Sunday to come! Those are the days predicted when my immune system will make its return. The days when I could swallow, eat, drink and not have mad cramps. Can’t wait. Please keep up the prayers. I need them so. It’s hard sometimes to see that I will make it to this weekend. Your prayers will get me there.

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