Thursday, December 29, 2005
Chemo 9 Comfortably numb
Today’s post I write most of the text sitting in my room in MTS 2 ward, room 226B. The patient I share the room with will be going in for a neurological angio in a few moments.
My left hand is receiving the Retuximab (5Hrs) and we should be done by about 6 pm after Adriamycin and Cyclosphosphamide (2 Hrs) this evening, after which we drive home.
It’s been a wonderful morning, I checked into the ward about 8:30 am, checked my weight and height. Anne is gently pulling my leg about the extra kilo’s the weighing machine shows (those steroids again!). Anne went to buy the drugs in the pharmacy and I then met up with my friend Mr S. in the ward, who received his first CHOP chemo yesterday, he is doing OK. Not slept too well, but not puking as much as I did on my first chemo. His son will be leaving back to Calcutta to stay with his grandparents and attend school. Mr S and I were comparing notes on first chemo’s. Ha!Ha! Like my friend in Singapore Liang Ying (with Hodgkins) writes about our new friendships made, ‘misery loves company’ – though there is no misery only talk of a healing God, medicines and tiny miracles that we encounter every day.
I was worried about them finding a vein today, but the nurses found a nice one behind my little finger and chemo is flowing fine, no pain. I had given the left hand a rest for the last 3 weeks because of the thrombosis, but now my right hand is aching so it had to be left hand this week.
“When I was a child I caught a fleeting glimpse, out of the corner of my eye, I turned to look, but it was gone, the child has grown and the dream is gone, There is no pain, you are receding,… my hands feel just like two balloons (?was he getting Vincristine),…. I have become comfortably numb, who cares – for just a little pinprick, there wil be no more.. ahhhh! – Comfortably numb, Pink Floyd (Floyd has been judged best band of all times according to an article in today’s edition of the Hindu. Good for them!)
I watched a lovely movie today during the chemo and would recommend it to anyone interested. CRY FREEDOM - its got Kevin Kline and Denzel Washington directed by Richard Attenborough about the life of Stephen Biko, a black activist who lived the South African Apartheid movement and his friendship with a white man Donald Woods, a liberal newspaper editor. The movie touches on friendship and the right for one man to claim to stand equal to another irrespective of skin colour. How much in life we can take for granted. I look over and watch Anne sleeping on my hospital bed with her OG notes fallen beside her, the chicken Appa cooked me at home for lunch and just sent over and think how we can so easily take things and people for granted. Hope I never do that.
10PM – all is well, I am back home, Dr. Sitaram the head of General Surgery and one man who I really admire, came over to visit. The support system we enjoy here is really great.