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[cancer] All is quiet on the Southern front

Much better day yesterday, after I finally listened to ‘s wise counsel and took an Imodium. As she and too well know, I am occasionally an idiot about meds. I also enjoyed more mental alertness yesterday, at least through early afternoon, than I’ve experienced in ages. Later in the day was rough, as I was extremely fatigued after my energy curve crashed, and my chest scars were unusually painful.

Watching do her thing this week has been kind of amazing. She’s running about like a running thing, prepping Witchnest Manor for livability, doing essential errands for both her and me, keeping up with all the minutiae of life, and somehow finding time to do five loads of laundry and bake banana bread. So many of my needs and deeds have been spread out among a wide network of supporters and caregivers, but with many of my people out of town this past week, it’s almost all been concentrated on . Who has been magnificent.

Meanwhile, bright forces gather for JayCon X this Saturday. arrives Friday, myriad other folks Saturday, for our 2 pm start over at the Flying Pie. I’m excited, and a little worried about my own ability to cope. But I am feeling better, and I’ll be very careful of my energy later this week.

I am starting to see better terrain for my body and my mind and my spirit, and oh, goodness, is that a welcome change.

[personal|cancer] Mixed updates, with lightly scattered photos

Yesterday was very, very rough. Five hours’ sleep the night before pretty much wiped me physically, mentally and emotionally.

Still, Mother of the Child and I managed to see the first matinee of Toy Story 3 ( demurred), parts of which made me sob like a baby. Some of that is chemo — listening to Journey can make me cry these days — and some of that is a genuinely moving story. I’ve long said that Toy Story 2 is one of the few movie sequels I’ve ever seen that lived up to the original. Pixar made a nigh perfect triple play with this one. I do wonder how much of the movie is really for kids, since so many of the jokes rely on being roughly my generation, not my daughter’s generations. And yes, I remember having one of those Fisher-Price telephones. I think my favorite bits were either the Spanish Buzz Lightyear, or the strangely twee Ken doll.

So long as I’m discussing this and that, here are some photos the Child took of the cake she baked, and of her own bad self.

IMG_0706

IMG_0688

Photos © 2010, B. Lake

Creative Commons License

This work by B. Lake is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

Love that kid.

So after the movie, and an afternoon of crabby vegging, I went to bed very early last night, enjoyed the usual lower GI nonsense, was awoken in the middle of the night by more of same, but still managed to capture about ten hours of solid sleep. Which more or less puts me on an even keel this morning, but hardly ahead of the game. I have an hour of two of Stuff to Do which I didn’t even attempt yesterday, that I’m hoping to get done today. Dreamt I was back in China, trying to manage a failing civilian-military mission there as the hotels decayed, meetings were cancelled and the key participants vanished one by one. Anxiety much?

I actually do feel somewhat better today mentally and emotionally, though physically I’m still wiped. is visiting for a while this morning, H— is spiriting away this afternoon to do glassmaking, and will be back from Seattle sometime around the end of the day. Me, going to Be Productive as much as possible for a while, the rewatch Lord of the Rings and reread Dune Messiah amid the various visitations and arrivals and whatnot.

See some, all or none of you at JayCon X this coming Saturday.

[conventions|repost] JayCon X

Mark your calendars now. In celebration of my natal anniversary, JayCon X, my 10th annual 37th birthday party, will be Saturday, July 3rd, from 2 to 5 pm at the Flying Pie in SE Portland. (That’s one week from today.) Come help me celebrate both my birthday and my successful completion of six months of chemotherapy in late June. If you can read this, you’re invited. Prior JayCon experience not required.

We’re partying because I was born, and because I will have beat cancer. Again.

Flying Pie Pizzeria
7804 SE Stark Street
Portland, 97215
(503) 254-2016
http://www.flying-pie.com/
[ Google Maps ]

As is traditional for JayCon, Paul Carpentier is specifically not invited.

[cancer] GI follies redux, the lighting of tunnels

This week has been pretty hellish at a physical layer. Unsurprising, since it’s the post-processing of my twelfth chemo session. Fatigue has been horrendous. Lower GI has developed new tricks, which I wasn’t even sure was possible at this point, as I figured I’d damned near seen it all.

I’m not sure I haven’t developed a GI bug this week, though. Either than or Shedding Day has been five days long and counting. This is my most vulnerable point for immunocompromisation, though in fairness, my immune system seems to have overperformed throughout the chemo cycle. My guts have sounded like a brewery these last few days. Sometimes I can literally hear liquid flowing for a while, as if someone had turned on the garden house. Not to mention the rhythm section working the tympani and whatnot down there. Of chemo farts the less said the better, but trust me, bad air has been a regular feature as well. And the output has been very high in liquids and relatively scant in solids. Loose stool is pretty much like breathing for me these days, but firehose stuff isn’t normal, even on chemo. To top it all off, there was blood yesterday, which is a huge red flag (pardon the expression) if it recurs.

All of which amounts to an enormous degree of discomfort, some significant social indignity, and a general sense of physical misery which folds right into the horrendous fatigue.

I said last night to that my tolerance for this process was finally eroding. The look on her face was priceless as she sought a tactful way to say, “Tolerance? What tolerance? You’ve fought it every step of the way!” Except I think in her mind she was using shorter, more forceful words. Good thing she loves me so much.

This week should be the bottom. If I can get the GI in line and stay rested, I figure on being flat next week with some noticeable uptick by the time of JayCon, then increasing improvements. Excepting the peripheral neuropathy, I’ll be fine, if still a bit fatigued, by September. And every day, life will go on.

I can see the light, and by damn, I’m going into it.

[conventions|repost] JayCon X

Mark your calendars now. In celebration of my natal anniversary, JayCon X, my 10th annual 37th birthday party, will be Saturday, July 3rd, from 2 to 5 pm at the Flying Pie in SE Portland. (That’s two weeks from today.) Come help me celebrate both my birthday and my successful completion of six months of chemotherapy in late June.

We’re partying because I was born, and because I will have beat cancer. Again.

Flying Pie Pizzeria
7804 SE Stark Street
Portland, 97215
(503) 254-2016
http://www.flying-pie.com/
[ Google Maps ]

As is traditional for JayCon, Paul Carpentier is specifically not invited.

[personal] I think I’m turning 46, I really think so

Today is my 46th birthday. How the hell did that happen? I blame , a/k/a my mom, personally. It’s also National Cancer Survivor’s Day. My own little bastard cancer-child is a little over two years old. And I come off the pump today in day three of infusion session eleven. One more to go, in two weeks, then I’m done with that shit.

As previously noted, I’ve postponed my birthday party til July 3rd [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ], so I can actually manage to enjoy it. Right now would be a wretched time for me to have a party.

So here I go, another day older and shorter of breath. Maybe I’ll get to live to be old, if I’m lucky.

[conventions|repost] JayCon X

Mark your calendars now. In celebration of my natal anniversary, JayCon X, my 10th annual 37th birthday party, will be Saturday, July 3rd, from 2 to 5 pm at the Flying Pie in SE Portland. Come help me celebrate both my birthday and my successful completion of six months of chemotherapy in late June.

We’re partying because I was born, and because I will have beat cancer. Again.

Flying Pie Pizzeria
7804 SE Stark Street
Portland, 97215
(503) 254-2016
http://www.flying-pie.com/
[ Google Maps ]

As is traditional for JayCon, Paul Carpentier is specifically not invited.

[cancer] Another voice heard from

is brave and honest about our chemo experience. Go read. I’ll still be here when you get back.

I don’t talk so much about her end of it, or ‘s, or ‘s, or the rest of my family and friends. This is my journey, and it’s not for me to expose their fears. I will say that , after months of anger and denial, has been asking detailed questions in a very mature manner. Others in my circle are coming to terms, one or two are not.

As says, this round is almost over. I may wind up sleeping through most of the rest of the process, the way things are going. By coincidence, I come off the needle on infusion session number 11 on June 6th the day of the 46th birthday. (This is why my birthday party is July 3rd, so I can stay awake for it — you are coming, yes?)

So much to celebrate, so much to fear. So much love, so much trauma. Cancer sucks.

[conventions|repost] JayCon X

Mark your calendars now. In celebration of my natal anniversary, JayCon X, my 10th annual 37th birthday party, will be Saturday, July 3rd, from 2 to 5 pm at the Flying Pie in SE Portland. Come help me celebrate both my birthday and my successful completion of six months of chemotherapy in late June.

We’re partying because I was born, and because I will have beat cancer. Again.

Flying Pie Pizzeria
7804 SE Stark Street
Portland, 97215
(503) 254-2016
http://www.flying-pie.com/
[ Google Maps ]

As is traditional for JayCon, Paul Carpentier is specifically not invited.

[personal] Updatery

No work on Green yesterday. Several people close to me were having very hard days, and it kind of spilled over. I’ll be at the Fireside today, so I expect to recapture the lost ground there.

the_child‘s last day of school is coming up Wednesday, which will change the complexion of evenings around Nuevo Rancho Lake. Especially this time of year, when it doesn’t get dark until after 9 pm — she tends to stay up later than me.

In other news, seventorches has posted some photos of JayCon VIII to Flickr. So has the_flea_king, here. See also his recent photo sets of his trip to Oregon, including some awesome portraits of Saturday market entertainers and attendees here.

Day Jobbe is cranking up early today, but watch for a link salad soon.

[personal] JayCon VIII report

JayCon VIII was a rocking success. Something between 50 and 75 people attended, far too many for me to sensibiy list here. rosefox won the farthest-away virtual prize, followed by the_flea_king and his lovely spouse. Bunch of folks came down from Seattle as well.

Most of all, I was there, alive and kicking. We had music courtesy of jackwilliambell, and stories read aloud in the stead of kenscholes by davidlevine, biomekanic and newroticgirl. Lots of photography was committed, lasirenadolce came up with the cake of a lifetime, and everybody rocked.

Plus we managed a very fine after party at the Alibi, a funky tiki bar in North Portland.

Reports from the field:

http://davidlevine.livejournal.com/130896.html
http://ramblin-phyl.livejournal.com/330429.html
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeremyt/2560578405/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/lillypond/sets/72157605492765267/

With surely more to come!