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For first time readers...my journey begins here: THE VERY FIRST BLOG POST (CC1)

Meaning of life

"The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away." ~ Pablo Picasso

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Cancer Chronicles 10

Ready and Willing…Able might be pushing it!

To catch you all up, after my brief vacation “rest," I returned to Houston with a trash pile of brush still blocking the driveway! Not knowing if it will ever be picked up and with the drugs I'm on I DON'T CARE!



On Monday night, June 4th I rolled into the apartment in Houston. Early to bed I go, with a 10 AM dental appointment in the morning to make a stent (mouth piece) for radiation. My stomach still a mess and the toilet my new best friend.

I spoke with my Dietitian, Denise, when the problem first began and asked if I could take Pepto-Bismol (what a stupid name, who comes up with this stuff?) Why not call it..... H-I-N-D-U RELIEF since it helps fight: Heartburn, Indigestion, Nausea, Diarrhea, and Upset Stomach? Why?? Because that would be another stupid name, that’s why! I need to go work for Proctor and Gamble and fix that...better dump your stock options if that happens! You’ve got time. I’m a little busy at the moment.

Anyway back to my Dumping Syndrome. Yup I’m a dumper! Whoda thunk it? Denise explained that sometimes the feeding tube "migrates into the intestine" and all nutrition bypasses the stomach causing "Dumping Syndrome." This could make the stomach churn creating the above problems. So she set up an appointment to have my G-tube checked.

Tuesday morning off I go to see the dentist and have my tube checked. 10 Am and I’m in the Dentist's waiting room doing what you do in a waiting room. WAIT, and wait, and wait! I explain I have another very important appointment and was told how important this stent is and this should be my priority, so I wait.

At 2 PM...yes 4 hours later I’m called. The nurse wants an x-ray of my mouth. But we just did one last month. I can tell you two teeth are missing. So she checks my records and apologizes for the confusion. No x-ray needed. In a room I wait to see the dentist, the third one I’ve seen here since this all began. He explains he sees an infection at the back of my throat and doesn’t like how my neck is healing. He prescribes an antibiotic and an oral rinse. I ask about the stent and he tells me, he will reschedule that and to go to my radiation simulation tomorrow without it. And yes I missed my feeding tube check. I’m sent on my way with nothing but a handful of drugs and not the fun kind! That’s crap!

Wednesday I arrive for radiation simulation and I wait. Ok only an hour this time, but remember I'm nursing a bed sore on my Coxic...another stupid name! I’m escorted into a dark room, dungeon like, with a black plywood bed (no cushion) and funky equipment that looks pretty old.

This is the dungeon bed I was assigned to for treatment, not the old simulation bed

I get undressed and onto the hard surface. Then they break out the bondage gear. I kid you not! A heavy weighted metal base at the foot, long straps, attached to that and lambs wool wrist cuffs. And for your head comfort, a hard acrylic neck brace. Then a foam wedge to keep the legs bent. What have I gotten myself into????????

As I wait for a dominatrix to appear in her leather bustier and six inch stilettos, I’m asked where my stent is. OMG! I’ve already been a bad boy and it's only my first day! I’m going to get flogged! For those of you who are lost, never mind, just keep reading.

I explain the stent was never made. Well that ended that experience. Off comes the gear and I’m told to get dressed. We can not proceed without it. This might be a good thing! I’m asked to wait in a private waiting room while they make some calls to find out what’s going on. Now you know you’re in for a long wait when you recline the chair and the nurse brings you a pillow, blanket, and turns off the lights for you. I like this room better than the dungeon!

Two hours later and calls have not been returned. I’m told to go see my surgeon on Friday. Just walk into the clinic and tell them I must see him now. I know this is bad advice I’ve tried it before and the doctor wasn’t even in! Meanwhile all the rest of my appointments are cancelled since they all build on attending the prior appointment. And again checking my feeding tube is canceled due to the waiting. HINDU RELIEF to the rescue! Another day sent home and nothing accomplished!

I call my surgeon’s office only to find out he’s not even in on Friday! I call his assistant and demand an appointment, ASAP! I’m getting steamed. The phone rings and it’s my social worker checking in. I vent and she’s very understanding. She asks to help and help she does. Within an hour she’s made an appointment with my surgeon, Friday 8:15 AM. He will come in to fix this on his day off and get the ball rolling again! A calm wafts over me as my stomach continues to rock-n-roll.

To be continued…Peace

Tune in next time kiddies when you'll hear Dr. Clayman demand, "Get-R-Done!" and Brian attempts to use the "F" Word in the dungeon!

NEXT BLOG POST (CC11)

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Words To Live By:

"The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service to others." -Mahatma Gandhi