Saturday, April 10,2021
Andrew is arriving in less than an hour. I am crazy excited to see him. We will be waking up next Saturday in a hotel half-way to Fort Wayne. It is truly unbelievable. Even though I have stage 4 cancer, I am filled with so much hope and joy (most of the time). I am hopeful that my MRI will be stable again on Monday. I am doing incredibly well. I feel great. My mind is sharper than it has been in over a decade. My speech is fluid. My stomach is flat again since I stopped most of my supplements and medications. I will slowly start them up again on Tuesday. Speaking of Tuesday, I meet with my oncologist at ten in the morning. Ugh. It is a feeling akin to being sent to the principal’s office for punishment when you have done nothing wrong. She offers absolutely no hope. All she offers is a death sentence. She sent me into a massive depression last summer when over the phone (she knew I was by myself) she insisted on telling me that my tumor had upgraded to stage four. I detest meeting with her. It’s a good thing we are moving.
Andrew just landed! I have the tea kettle simmering on low for coffee making! I absolutely love life. Even though there are a tremendous amount of crappy things in the world, it is such a joy to just be here experiencing little things like freshly brewed organic coffee.
April 14th, 2021
Of all my years of MRI scans, I cried as the machine slid back into its well-lit tunnel. The tears just escaped my will and ran down my temples into my hair. For purposes of not ruining the image I could not move a millimeter to dry them with my hands, so the salty tears solidified on my face. I kept my eyes open until the tears evaporated so as not to mar my eye-makeup. Ugh. The sheer vanity (and fear of vulnerability) at a time like this. I know I am not a bad person, but I do resent this ridiculous, unnecessary side of myself.
My results were in just four hours later. At first reading, in my mind, the results were disappointing as they were disappointing for Andrew and precious Makaela, but sweet Samantha (my adorable forever optimistic young woman)—the one who said when her kitty William ran away when she was three years old, “well, we can always get a new one!”, said “this is wonderful news! It could be SO much worse! You are doing great and I know you will figure this out.”
It grew 4 millimeters—possibly. It grew in an unenhanced region which is wonderful news as it is not certain growth, plus even if it did grow, it’s at an extremely slow rate for a year’s time. However, as a perfectionist, this is a grave disappointment. But, what it does mean is that it’s growth is slow (if at all) and I have time to try new things. We do have a plan. But, I won’t bore you with the ”sciencey” details. I am going to win. This cancer will NOT be the death of me. I am going to live deep into old age. I promise.
I am hiding upstairs with Mace, our golden-doodle. I am sitting on our teal cushioned wicker chair typing on my iPhone while Mace is resting on our bed. We have about 9 people helping to pack today, several more than yesterday. The full-size semi is parked illegally out front. They have loaded almost all of the furniture from the main level and the basement. They will be up here soon to steal my cozy spot and then where will I go?
Tuesday April 20th, 2021
I am not sure where to start today. Here I sit in Fort Wayne following a tumultuous series of events. My brain is still cloudy, so please bare with me as I attempt to assemble jumbled thoughts together.
I had my final walk with Elizabeth…maybe I should not say “final,” as I will be back to visit. We walked our favorite Lake, Lake Bde Maka Ska, with the stunning view of the Minneapolis Skyline. It was a brisk, beautiful, bitter day all rolled into one. Elizabeth is one of the only friends I have socialized with during Covid, and it’s been a sweet journey. I will miss her physical presence.
We spent that second to last night in a hotel as the movers had packed up our bed and drove off to Chicago with it. We returned to the house the next morning to load up our suitcases and finish the cleaning.
I went down to the laundry room to grab something when standing by the laundry’s sink I felt an aura. I called Andrew. I have to fast forward through this part as it is terrifying for me. I didn’t used to have auras before I seized, but I am thankful I do so I can prepare and avoid injury. I start to feel myself receding inside my brain before my body goes rigid as I try desperately to fight the sucking sensation. I recovered fairly fast (30-45 minutes), and then oddly ended up laying down on the empty dining room floor feeling weak and shaky. (Andrew thinks this was seizure number two). Andrew called 911. Within three minutes the medics were by my side. As I was laying in the ambulance, I started to chat with them and decided I wanted to go back in the house as I felt fine. Andrew encouraged me to go with them to the ER, so I did. As I write this, I am currently becoming increasingly queasy and anxious. As I have mentioned previously, anxiety is a disgusting part of my life experience now—it is gross.
Starting in the ambulance both medics attempted to put an IV in without success, then the first nurse tried in the emergency room, the second nurse tried twice, and finally after my second (possibly third) grand-mal seizure in the hospital bed (while held tightly by my beautiful husband), the third nurse finally succeeded getting an IV established.
What a fitting way to spend my last day in Minneapolis. I did not want to sleep at the disruptive hospital, so Andrew took me back to the hotel. As Minneapolis grieves for George Floyd, and attempts to heal of its racial brokenness, we move to Indiana in search of physical restoration and a new career. “Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.” ~Hellen Keller