[cancer] State of the Jay, as of chemo day -2

Chemo is in two days. Yesterday was crazed. I had a physical therapy appointment at the clinic (which is a separate facility associated with the hospital I use). Ran long.

Had to pick up some FMLA paperwork at the Medical Oncology unit. Expected that to be a five minute process, was there for nearly an hour. A productive, entertaining hour, admittedly, as a very sharp and funny oncology Nurse Practitioner talked to me at length, but not what I’d expected.

Had to get some bloodwork done — checking for celiac, a potential culprit in my ongoing bowel issues — they were training a new phlebotomist and grew very excited when I gave my standard, “I’m a hard stick, here’s what you need to do, yadda yadda” routine. (My personal best is 13 jabs to draw blood. Sometimes they have to call in IV Therapy to hit blood in me. I’ve never been a junkie, but I have deep, flabby veins that run away from needles at the best of times, and over the past two years of cancer treatments have accumulated some impressive vein scarring in the usual places.) So I cheerfully submitted to being a jab test dummy and training target, and that took about twenty minutes instead of the usual three to five. (The phlebotomist’s apprentice did finally get me in one jab, so mad props to her.)

Finally, rather late due the lengthy delays at the clinic, I ran off to the train station to collect . Later that day, saw my therapist.

Here’s where I am…

  • I have almost no mental and emotional reserves. I am quick to be crabby, and I miss jokes. This is Stress 101, but I still don’t like it.
  • I have been eating erratically, including a highly unusual amount of junk food. Not even my most ordinary comfort eating patterns, either. Stress 101a, methinks.
  • I am terrified of chemo at many levels, but quite confident that I will be the master of this process, rather than letting it master me.
  • On Thursday night or Friday morning, I will probably lose my shit utterly. and will scrape me up off the ground and keep me going.
  • and I have developed a ritual for marking the chemo sessions which impressed my therapist. She, I and will be implementing the first part of this tomorrow evening. Yes, I will document it.
  • I am planning to liveblog and/or Tweet my first infusion session on Friday, as much as is practical.

That’s me. Jumbled, frightened, determined.

And may I hear a hearty “Fuck Cancer!” from the crowd?

10 thoughts on “[cancer] State of the Jay, as of chemo day -2

  1. smirk says:

    FUCK CANCER! (no really, I think I need a shirt that says that….at the very least a nice baseball hat)

  2. Yes, oh yes. You may.



    Imagine trails flying off the end of each letter, for they are multidimensional.

  3. Mur says:

    Fuck cancer WHERE IT BREATHES.

    Goddamn, Jay, I have very few words (that aren’t expletives describing in great detail what I heard a leather-clad Freya did to that gibbering gimp Cancer the other night with a whip, some stereo wire, and a copy of Sarah Palin’s “Going Rogue.” Then Thor came in with his hammer and it was a whole thing.) except for we’re pulling for you. Big time.

  4. Yes, FUCK cancer in all it’s nasty forms. You go, guy!

  5. Christie says:

    (we would do harmonies for you if we could)


    And all they’re going to do is pump your system full of toxins keyed to cells in the process of splitting in the calculated chance it will kill more of the the cancer cells (who are in an orgy of reproduction) than it will kill of the normal cells. What’s to worry about?

    Hey, if you’d walk into that singing a happy tune, I’d suggest more therapy of a different stripe. That which does not kill us only serves to make us weirder. Think of it as playing chicken knowing cancer always swerves to the right. Or maybe poker knowing cancer’s tell-tales. You’ve got the upper hand in either case, Jay.

  7. Jan says:

    FUCK CANCER!!!! I’m 9 months cancer free – I’m in the background cheering you on Jay!

    On another note check for colitis (re: bowel issues) I have that and what you describe sound like it to me.

  8. Sän says:

    May your malady engage in fornication of a crude and vulgar nature!

  9. Cora says:

    Fuck Cancer!

    I’ll be keeping you in my thoughts this coming Friday.

  10. Summer says:

    FUCK CANCER! With a rusty pole and no lube. Repeatedly.

    And at the risk of quoting others, we’re here for you.

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