Gotta keep on keepin' on.......

Cancer again...that's 3 times in 2 years. This time it’s not breast cancer, but a new one called squamous cell carcinoma. New cancer, same old fighting spirit! My blog is still named for one of many songs that kept me going the first time around. Driving home from an upsetting appointment, I turned on the radio just as this line from Steve Miller Band's Jet Airliner was playing: "I've got to keep on keepin' on" I did just that. And I'll do it again.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Hello, I'm home and my white count is up and no one cares!

Hello, I'm home and my white count is up and no one cares! Yippee for me! I walked in and announced my happy news, but only my mom said hurray. That's OK. I'll tell you guys all about it:

I just got back from my off-week checkup with the nurse practitioner (NP). They take my blood the minute I walk in the office and then make me wait about 30-45 minutes before bringing me in to the NP's office, where I wait another 30-45 minutes before I can see her.

My white count is good, which means I'm not any more susceptible to germs than other parents with 4 sniffly-nosed kids in the house. My white count was down just once, and it was a big pain because I couldn't handle or eat fresh fruit and vegetables, touch fresh flowers, or be around crowds. The doctor was worried I'd catch something. That was my Girl in the Bubble weekend. I asked them to recheck my blood a few days later, and it was fine, so I could resume contact with fruits, veggies, etc.

I didn't have to wait very long to see the NP this time. Last time I waited over an hour and a half, and I had nothing to read and nothing to write on. This time I planned ahead and brought 2 books plus my Franklin Planner. But I didn't read or write or plan. Instead, I ended up chatting with another patient in the various waiting areas (while we waited to get weighed, and to get our blood drawn, and later where we waited to be called to our appointments....we're shuffled around like cattle).

The patient I met at the doctor's office was named Dwayne. He's 48 years old, works in IT, has a teenage daughter who wants to get her learner's permit, a wife who is not the best of drivers, loves to fish, and is quite a talker. He also has cancer, and he's terminal. Over the last 2 years they've tried all the drugs on him, he says, and this last round is his last shot. He's very matter-of-fact about it. We had a nice chat, talked about being upbeat because what else would you there will always be someone worse off than you have to keep moving and keep busy so you don't give up....things like that. It was nice to meet someone with such a good attitude. I've run into other cancer patients who have no idea what drugs they're taking, no sense of humor, just seemed defeated. Not to be unkind, but that just bums me out, and I try to avoid that.

I talked with Dwayne until they called me off for my appointment. And I did end up reading one of my books while I waited in the NP's office for 30 minutes. But as much as I enjoyed my quiet time with my book, I enjoyed my conversation with my cancer friend much more. I don't know if I helped him, but he certainly did help me.


  • At 11/4/06, 8:20 PM, Blogger Aldon Hynes said…

    There are people out on the internet that you've never met, and that you probably never will meet that do care that your white count is up.

    There are people out on the internet that glad to hear about Dwayne and his great attitude.

    Enjoy some fresh fruit, time outside of the bubble, and keep us informed about how you are doing.

  • At 11/12/06, 5:13 PM, Blogger Nile said…

    Hey Katie,

    Sorry I've been out of the loop, but I've been battling this virus for the last couple weeks. Glad you're doing so great!!!



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