Three weeks ago, more or less, I had to skip my chemo treatment. I was having diarrhea really bad and had what we call in the medical field an "incident". I'm trying really hard to not let this cancer change my life too much. I want to play with the kids, have fun, work, and sail. I want to do these things. My son Ben was at the boat with me and we inflated the kayak for a spin around the marina. If Ben wants to do something that involves floating on the water, I do it. Was having diarrhea all day but taking lots of fluids in and thought I was ok. After paddling around for a bit, we came back to the dock and once Ben got out of the kayak, I followed. Barely. Got on the dock, stood, and had my vision tighten to a tunnel about the size of a dime. I came close to falling in the 50 degree water. No life jacket of course. I could have drowned I imagine. This is what is called a near syncopal episode. I almost passed out. Or "fell out" if you are from the south side of Chicago. Realizing I was going to have problems, I sat on the dock and just rested. I didn't call my oncologist and boy did that pissed him off. Imagine a furious doctor shoving his pager in my face saying, 'See this magical device? You call this number and this thing beeps. I then call you back!". He went on to say nurses are the worse patients in the world. I tend to agree.
So since the chemo causes the diarrhea, Dr Gold withheld treatment. It was all I could do to not cry. This damn chemo makes me weepy as hell. I did stay and have a liter of fluid pumped into me to fill my tank so to speak. Long story a bit longer, I now take immodium at the first sign of the runs and have the pager number on my phone. So far so good.
Last week I got infused with the chemo but he withheld the "evil" chemo (oxaliplatin) till this week. Which I am getting right now. I've been weak and tired and also not sleeping well but basically doing ok. At times I feel like I'm out of gas. I just get tired of fighting all the time. Fighting to look normal (for me). Fighting to act normal (again, for me). Just fighting. All the time. However, I bounce back from those feelings and just soldier on. Not much choice really. All I can say is I hope to hell this treatment works. I have stuff I want, nay, need to do.
To prove that it hasn't been all bad, I'll post some pictures.
Chemo shirt last week. Lee and John from Newport Beach got me this.
Not this past weekend but last weekend on Sunday, I was sitting on the boat alone. Kids gone to Jen's parents beach house, my parents were entertaining friends from out of town, and I decided I was getting the hell out of dodge. I said before that chemo makes me crave certain foods. Hot dogs and relish are currently my favorites. Hot dogs! They probably gave me this damn cancer! Anyway, I had hot dogs, buns and most importantly...
Anyway back to me sailing Appa single handed, I left the marina under clear skies and a north wind blowing around 10 knots. I think it was about 2 in the pm. Clearing the marina and hoisting the sails took a lot out of me but once the sails are up, it is easy peasy. While not Mustang fast, Appa can move a bit and she put her shoulder down and nudged the waves to the side as she made for Port Madison across the Puget Sound. We (the boat and I) hit 7 to 8 knots and I had a beer in celebration of all that can be good in life.
There is nothing-absolutely-nothing half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. I have no other words to describe the pure joy of a well sailed boat.
The arrow points to Shileshole which is home. I sailed back and forth and then went to Liberty Bay and anchored. Was just a phenomenonal day.
Sunset in Liberty Bay. Nuff said.
Monday morning I raised anchor and had a hell of a time getting the anchor out of the mud. That is heavy, sticky bay mud right there. Most of it slid off before I could get my phone and snap a picture.
I managed to sail almost all the way home but got wiped out tacking back and forth and had to motor for a bit and rest. Oh well. Still was fun.
Last Tuesday my mom took me to chemo. It was suppose to be the evil chemo but since I had the past history of diarrhea, they did the good chemo. That bummed me out.
Today went ok. Got the oxcepliatin today. Aka evil chemo. Fingers tingling now and tear ducts along with saliva glands hurt now. Only while making fluid though. My brother sent me a picture of my uncle Gordon who died from lung cancer, what is it now, 3 years ago I think. That made me cry and it hurt. Heart hurt from sadness and tears ducts ached also. Weird drugs coursing through my system.
Gordon circa 1974 or so. My brother Kristopher with the Mae West life jacket and the infamous dog Rumpelstilzchen. Rumple for short. Rumple is just in front of my brother. Ah hell. I miss you Gordon...
This past weekend, I sailed with my good buddies JC, Chris, Brooke, Rich, Easton, and Kaley in the CYC sailfest Fridays. They have extra hotdog relish unlike Elliott Bay Downtown Series. No wind and they eventually called off the race but we hung out on the water and enjoyed the night anyway.
JC and Rich trying to get us moving in light to no wind. Me pointing at something.
I really have to work on my smile. This is Chris and I. A better friend than I deserve. He is...simply one of the best people I know. He is my brother from another mother. Love ya Chris.
Damn J105 behind us in the photo. 😀
Saturday my mom and dad came over to the boat and we took Appa out for a sail back to Liberty Bay and visited the town of Poulsbo. It was another stunning day with perfect wind. We managed to sail all the way to Poulsbo. Trust me. It is hard to do. Our patience was rewarded with a great sail. You sail the wind you have not the wind you wish for. Life lesson there I think.
Dad guiding us through the light wind till we got into the good stuff.
One Wednesday last week, I met Jen and the kids with my parents at the Seattle Yacht Club back to school party. They had a balloon artist, who immediately ran out of pink and purple balloons. How in the hell do you run out of pink and purple balloons? The girls in line were crushed. The yacht club also had a climbing wall. Inflatable climbing wall.
Mighty Sam climbing the wall of terror!
I should mention that Ben meet us at the yacht club after climbing Mt Si for one of his friends birthday celebration.
Here is a photo of Ben's bunny RexE.
Very friendly bunny.
Sam has one also named Stella.
Not quite as friendly as Rex but getting used to Sam
Loving Stella to death. Maybe literally.
I'm out of gas. Can't blog anymore. Too tired. Chemo today is kicking me. I'll be back and kick it though.