One of the annoying things about chemobrain for me is I can’t hold onto thoughts any more. I know I *had* a good title and first sentence for this entry written in my head but somehow between the hospital and my office I lost it.
I blame Dan Carlin (the Podcaster). His two shows, “Common Sense” and “Hardcore History,” are guilty pleasures of mine and I was enjoying one on the drive to work. DAMNIT DAN CARLIN*.
* Not really, I love Dan and wish he was our President.
While I’m thinking about it, I’m not sure I’ve ever really delved into my particular flavor of chemobrain. Perhaps most annoying is that I’ve almost totally lost the ability to digress and then get back to my original train of thought. I’ve been trying to train myself to not do this anymore as a result because the number of times I have to ask “I’m sorry, what was I talking about?” is seriously embarrassing. My vocabulary has suffered as well — I find myself struggling to recall words I know I used to be able to find effortlessly.
I’ve said it before (I think in the last entry, come to think of it) but when all you have to trade on is your mental faculties, watching them decay is pretty dismaying. But you know what? The hell with it. There are things in life you can fix, and things you can’t. I’m not going to quit treating my disease so that I can recollect and use “antediluvian” in a sentence. I’m already tempted to just speak in animated gifs and let people wonder what I’m trying to convey anyway.
Oh, PET scan versus stupid rambling. Had the test this morning, my second ever. It was fairly pleasant, really. Which is odd, right? We have to do so many unpleasant and demeaning things in this war against the big C that a little Monday morning RADIATION before coffee seems like no big deal. Got the injection, had a nice chat with the tech and promptly fell asleep in the chair.
Damn you, warm blanket of warmth and sleepy warm goodness.
And damn you cancer for making the extreme so commonplace that I not only can sleep through something that by all rights should be terrifying, but instead be thankful that I got some extra rest instead of having to sit at work.
Anywho, after 45 minutes to let the radioactive sugar (think that’s what they use) percolate, the tech had me go into the giant expensive machine and I again fell asleep during both scans (lower body and upper body were done one after the other after shifting positions). Really the only thing that really bothered me about this morning is it occurred to me that it’s total bullshit that I’ve now been irradiated several times by professionals and I STILL don’t have any cool superpowers. How lame is that? I can’t even have like the ability to instantly find a good ramen shop anywhere? I could be Captain Umami or something. As terribad as the last Avengers movie was there’s probably room for me now on the team.
*sounds of Avenger’s doing Avenger-y stuff: crash clang bite meow bzzzaaappp squish squish*
*cut to Captain Umami noisily slurping some shoyu ramen and giving the camera the middle finger*
Once finished with the PET scan I wobbled to my car in a sleepy fog and went to Starbucks for the morning triple venti no foam soy latte. I almost wish I had done the recommended blood transfusion at last Friday’s Dara session but with the later-than-usual start time I wouldn’t have been home until like 7 pm at 2 hours per bag. The PA that met with me pre-Dara last Friday, Sarah (who rocks socks and has almost as many “ooh, shouldn’t have let the kiddo listen to that song” stories as I do) said my numbers were iffy in terms of needing a transfusion but I could wait a week. As a result, zero energy right now to the point where I’m tempted to see if they can fit me in earlier than this Friday. Hell I got tired doing my own laundry this weekend. And I’m not in THAT bad a shape.
Also if my 5-year-old cutest-ever princess of a daughter suddenly notes very seriously that “Wu-Tang Clan ain’t nothin’ to fuck with” to you, please just nod knowingly and let me know so I can feel the appropriate amount of guilt and then figure out how to blame my wife. Thanks.
So back to ze PET scan. As I get back into the car at the Starbucks parking lot I grabbed the card o’ discharge instructions.
There was one.
“Drink lots of water.”
Look I’m not a nuclear physicist but something about “drink a bunch of water” to get rid of being irradiated just doesn’t sound right. I mean I’m sure it’s probably safe. That’s why the techs bring the injection in a metal box, have the needle to do the injection encased in metal and have the nuke picture everywhere. But you? You’re fine! Just drink some water.
Curious to see how much this Monday morning adventure cost. Well cost my insurance company, at least until they stop covering me. Which I’m not even going to get into because there’s so much hype and bullshit out there right now about this TrumpCare business that it’s just not worth it to dwell on here. For reference I believe ALL politicians are inhuman soulless scum and this is just the latest example, but I really don’t want to get political beyond that. I hope it works out and even more I hope those who created this new mess, instead of thoughtfully fixing what was already in place, know (as new Twitter friend @MightyCasey recently put it to one of her local politicos): Winter is Coming.
But whatever. Just like being irradiated pre-latte there are things I can influence and change, things I cant, and this is not a platform for either. I am truly sorry for those of you who were severely affected by anxiety over this stuff and probably continue to be. As someone who has struggled for the past four years since diagnosis with many of those around me adding to my stress instead of trying to help relieve it, I feel your pain, and last week was scary for me as well.
It has, inadvertently, added fuel to the “drug costs are too high” argument though. I found this article this morning which I really enjoyed. I love how big pharma tries to play this issue off on PBMs and won’t tell you the “real” cost after discounts, PBM backroom sorcery and other assorted bullshit FOR YOUR OWN GOOD, CITIZENS.
As someone who not only has taken a lot of cancer drugs but who also takes Revlimid and recommends Celgene stock for my clients, it amazes me that this is allowed. Then again perhaps not, given that we’re talking about the largest lobbying group by political donation in the States. Who are also fighting (along with police unions, prison unions, etc.) marijuana legalization because being on the wrong side of history is fun for the whole family and who cares about suffering, people! Give those whiners opioids and tell them to shut the fuck up.
Not going there (marijuana policy) today, been in a good mood all weekend even with the exhaustion and that’s a HUGE hot button issue with me. A little snark and it’s time to move on. To …
To … um, hmm. I guess that’s it for the core dump today. I probably needed some crafty pithy thing to say next but I’m just too tired to be pithy today. I’m pith poor (which is much more amusing if you say it in Mike Tyson’s voice). So here’s to hoping my PET scan has something good to show us and when I hear something I’m guessing you’ll be one of the first to know.