So Far, So Good

image008First the bad news.  Thanks to my brother John’s extraordinary cooking I have gained three pounds this week. Time for John to go home.  Time for me to stop pigging out.  I knew I had gained weight. My jeans weren’t falling off me yesterday.  And yes, I know it’s really a good thing (as long as I don’t keep on doing it).   And no, I don’t really want John to go home.  I am loving having my brother here.  He’s great company, a great cook and he’s taken over some of the driving to MD Anderson to give Jerry a break.  Honestly, the most stressful thing about this whole ordeal has NOT been the chemo, NOT the Proton..It’s the traffic.

Next piece of bad news…please note that NONE of my bad news is REALLY bad.  Anyway, we had planned to go to Flower Mound to see the Littles this weekend.  The kids had basketball games on Saturday and a swim meet on Sunday and we were going to celebrate Declan’s fourth birthday while we were there.  I’ve been hearing about serious flu problems in the Dallas area for awhile but haven’t really worried about it. However,  Erin called this morning to tell me that five of the twelve kids in Declan’s class have the flu.  The hospitals are turning away people because they are full…Dallas is a mess.  I talked to the doctor about going into Flu Hell…She told me I shouldn’t go to public places (the basketball games and swim meet) and if the kids were sick I needed to stay away from them but if I wanted to risk it, I could.  If I got the flu, it would mess up my treatment but wouldn’t be the end of the world.  We decided NOT to go.  Too risky.

So that’s all the bad news.  The good news is that I’m doing fine.  On Wednesdays I meet with Dr. Nguyen, my radiation oncologist.  I have to fill out a paper before I go in and circle any side effects I’ve experienced in the past week…nausea, vomiting, difficulty swallowing, dizziness, trouble sleeping, fatigue, etc. etc. There’s a list of about twenty possible side effects.  Last week I had a few…This week, nothing.  Her nurse checked my paper and said, “You forgot to fill out this side”  I said, “nope…no problems”  He checked my blood pressure, temp, weight, etc and said “You are the healthiest one here!”  Nice, huh?

I am feeling fine.  And I know it may not last…most likely won’t last.  As my doctor said, “It’s early…there could be rough days ahead.”  But really, I’m celebrating every good day, every day I can go for a walk, every day I can do yoga, every day I can eat without painful swallowing, every day life is easy.  And if it’s not so great tomorrow, well, we’ll deal with that tomorrow.  I do think that prayers, Reiki, healing energy coming my way, good thoughts, etc.  are making a major difference in this treatment cycle.  It may not last but so far, so good.

So tomorrow I have Proton at 6:00…John’s bringing me so Jerry can sleep.  Getting up early is NOT his favorite thing.  Then we’re back to MD Anderson at noon for a meeting with my medical oncologist to talk about how chemo is going (fine) and then we’re heading over the the Houston Museum of Fine Arts for the afternoon.  I noticed signs for an Impressionist exhibit shortly after we got to Houston and have been wanting to get there ever since.  Tomorrow looks like a good day to go.  John did a bit of research on the exhibit…I’ve seen these paintings before.  They’re on loan from the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts.

Anne and Clark are coming home on Monday.  They’ve been gone for about a month.  It will be wonderful to see them again.  Then, the following week, my sister, Kim, is flying in from Massachusetts for a week…POC (perks of cancer) …family comes from all over and I am loving it.

One more month and we’ll be home.  Time flies when you’re having fun.



21 thoughts on “So Far, So Good

  1. I smiled at your frustration over weight gain. Clever to read “POC” (perks of cancer) referring to your welcome visits of family and friends. Such a nice MLK quote at the end, too. Love, Barb G.

  2. That’s Judith Jameson of the Alvin Ailey dancers dancing “Revelations”. My favorite dancer. My favorite piece. I saw it as a teen. Great expression for moving us all forward. Onward!!!!

  3. I’m so glad to hear your good news and I’m glad you’re not taking any chances with the flu. I’m not surprised with the doctor’s realizing how great you are because you have one of the best attitudes of anyone I ever met!

  4. As always, your bright sense of being is felt strongly through your choice and mannerisms with words. They are delightful and so precisely reflect your being. I stare at the ocean after reading your blog and just contemplate …don’t know what I’m contemplating, but I am.

    Gaining three pounds is a plus. I know what it’s like to lose weight due to illness and when you gain the weight that’s been lost, it almost seems awful which of course it isn’t. Being thinner is a booster, but gaining a few pounds won’t really change clothing sizes, so don’t worry. I always thought “fat,” so thin will never enter my brain.

    Who will do the cooking? Does John leave recipes? How does one even replace him? When will he be back. What a treasure he is. A good man for sure. I haven’t any idea what he does, but he’d make an excellent house manager it seems. If he isn’t already, he will make someone glad to have him around the house.

    We’re seeing Rosanna and Terry tonight along with a few relatives including Chris and Myra all of whom are going to the King Center to see Rain. I think it’s about the Beatles. We bought the tickets months ago and are looking forward to it. It’s amazing how Center School spreads throughout the country.

    Don’t drink the water! Remember that advice? It seems that it goes along with visiting Dallas. Why would you entertain the idea of going to Fluville! I know, we’d walk through fire to see the grandkids, but you can’t really take any chances now. You can take your computer and read to the kids, or even just “talk” to them in a video-gram. I am sure you can come up with a storyboard and create something wonderful to share with them. While it won’t be as good as touching, it’s better than nothing.

    As always, it’s wonderful to learn how you’re doing. So far so good is wonderful.

  5. Love you and very grateful all is well in the moment. So glad family is also checking in and Jerry is getting a break. Sorry about Flower Mound but what a gift John, Kim and Ann will be around to see you!! Think of you every morning and sending love, light and reiki energy. So glad we got to chat. Linda

    Sent from my iPhone

  6. Flu flu all over yuck! It’s been bad here too (though not as bad as Dallas it sounds like). Everyone I know is sick, was sick or is caring for a sick kid 😦

  7. Hopefully in a month it will warm up!  Highs in 40s tomorrow…gray,cloudy…could be in MA but I think it’s warmer there.  Wise decision to stay away from the sick people…no sense in compromising all the good you’re feeling.  Went to eye doc yesterday only to discover that my insurance isn’t active….have been on the phone twice for 45 minutes…what a mess.  They’re working to reinstate it but they’re not there yet.  What a pain.  Hopefully we’ll go to Jim’s on Friday…that heals all!

    Jerri 521 Cedarwood Lane Venice, FL 34293 941-445-4118

    “People are like bicycles.  They can keep their balance only as long as they keep moving.”  Albert Einstein

  8. All wonderful news Mary…keep up that good humor and all the bad side effects will stay away!!
    Enjoy the museum, but if someone is snuffling stay away from them!
    We are hoping to get to FL in Feb. Not sure if we can , but hopefully you’ll be home by then and I can see you. Keeping my fingers crossed it works out!
    Take care! xo

  9. Mary, we just left Dallas on Saturday. The flu crisis there was all over the news. I think you are wise to not visit the area just now. FaceTime or Skype saves me all the time!! Really enjoying reading your blog, thanks for sharing your experiences with us. Be well!

  10. Deirdre Christman

    Such good, good news! And the fact you’ve gained some weight is good news too. Your face will be fuller and your body will have stored nutrients to draw from if you get sick and can’t eat for a while. (That may not even happen, but good to be prepared.) I think you’re wise not to take chances with the flu. Erin can send video and you have FaceTime. Good for you going to yoga and the art museum. I know the Clark well and wish I could see hose paintings again. Have you ever read “Luncheon of the Boating Party” by Susan Vreeland? It’s a fictionaliized account of the making of Renoir’s famous painting. I loved it. I’m a sucker for anything that has to do with art. I also enjoyed “The Painted Girls” by _____Buchanan, about ballet girls in Paris who pose for the artists, especially one who poses for Degas. You read more than I do, so you’ve probably already read these. Enjoy having your family visit you. They’re probably just using cancer as an excuse to come see you. I’m sure they. It’s you as much as we do.

  11. Glad you are doing so well. Just remember, the Museum is a public placed also, so be careful of flu exposure there as well. Continued prayers:)

  12. You are SO silly! Gaining those three pounds is a good thing and a positive sign. Keep shoveling in John’s great food! Sorry you will be unable to make the trip to Flower Mound, I know what a disappointment that is. You sound so well and healthy…it’s wonderful! Martha

  13. Mary great news except for the Littles. I don’t envy Erin if the kids get the flu. Sorry you’ll have to stay away. Hey, enjoy those great meals. Remember soon you’ll be home walking off those pounds on you beautiful beach!

  14. Sending love!

  15. Glad to hear you put on a little weight girl. Remember there’s love in that pasta!! I think you are smart to play it safe and stay as far away from the flu as possible. It’s great that Jerry is getting a little break too. There’s nothing worse than the stress of heavy traffic when you have somewhere to be at a specific time. One of the best perks of retirement — FLEX TIME.

  16. By all means, Mary, keep celebrating every day. You deserve these days and much more.

  17. Mary, you are awesome!!! I bet that you are an inspiration to others going through similar situations.
    Sorry for not getting connected sooner. I pray for you and your family. You are a truly remarkable
    WOMAN !! Sending you a hug, Pat Kelly

  18. Sure doesn’t sound like any bad news to me….gaining weight for you is a blessing? fact, I could easily give you a few pounds! So glad your brother’s visit has been a wonderful gift for toy! Also so glad that your sister will be visiting soon…probably another good cook?!
    I hope you have a lovely weekend….sorry your visit was canceled with the grands but better to be safe than sorry! Hope it’s warmer there than here…..brrrrr! night, Pam G

  19. If you have pandora on your app. Try Matt Redmans Christian music and the newsmen too. Great new generation stuff. When I was visiting Houston a few years ago I went to see Joel olsteen…interesting. Great feeling .. Very upbeat. My constant prayers . Will let you know when I find out Ron Orums schedule at M.D. God bless. Judy

    Sent from my iPad

  20. I send a constant flow of positive energy and love your way!

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