Well, kids, I started this blog last night, but became so moody I decided to give myself the night to think things over and wait until today to post. I'll blame it on the steroids, I guess.
The news is that I have to do another month of Interferon. Big-picture-wise, this is not such a big deal. It's just 12 more treatments. Yeah, I'm a little bummed, thinking I only had 4 injections left and then realizing it's another month. Kinda sucks, but, it's not like a scan came back positive or anything, so I'm actually feeling pretty lucky. And I'm sure it'll be over with before I know it, and all that jazz. Anyway.
Parkland was actually kind of a funny experience Thursday. Bobby went with me to mark the momentous occasion (which turned out to not be all that momentous), and was supposed to be with the PA who I saw a couple of months ago. Linda. You know, the lady who I tried to talk to about improving my quality of life while on chemo or getting off the Interferon early, and told me that the side effects "aren't that bad" and that I'm not taking "that much Interferon." Well, I evidently scared her that last visit, (which, let's face it, she deserved) because she wouldn't even come in the room to see me Thursday. She walked by a few times, and then, about 20 minutes later, she sent in somebody else, an actual MD this time, who I actually really like and who was really receptive to what's going on. It was a good experience; the new doc really seemed to take her time, was careful and felt my lymph nodes for swelling (first time that's ever happened at Parkland), and said we'd schedule scans for next month. So, all in all, things could be a whole lot worse.
Not sure why, but the nausea and the rash have been a little worse this last week. I've been trying to get back on track by walking and following my Achilles schedule, but the rash made it impossible for a few days. Worst rash I've had since I was in the hospital, and I had to take steroids two or three times just to get it under control. (That's right, girlie-man, I'm going to pump you up.) It's a lot better today, so I'm gonna try to start the training schedule again tonight.
I've been dodging phone calls and such this last week, since I was feeling so sick. I guess people know when they call and I don't call back that this is what's going on. I hate talking to people when I'm sick, I just don't know what to say and it makes things so awkward. It's hard- I want to be able to talk to them, but then, I hate hearing that sound in their voice when they feel sorry for me. It's really bad with my mom... I think it bothers her the most. I love my mom, and she's such a neat lady, but her being a nurse, this has been the most difficult for her, I think. She's not even really that much of a worrier, not nearly as bad as my dad was. I wonder sometimes if God did this for a reason, if He made sure my dad was gone before I found out I had cancer. It would've driven Dad crazy worrying about me having cancer. I guess the Big Guy really does know what He's doing.
I've been researching Interferon a little these last few days, trying to find web videos and such to explain how Recombinant DNA is made. It's just a natural curiosity, I guess, to see how this stuff works that I'm putting in my body. I thought maybe if I knew, it would work better somehow. Anyway, Wikipedia boils the information down pretty well, and it's interesting stuff, actually. Evidently, "Interferon was scarce and expensive until 1980 when the interferon gene was inserted into bacteria using recombinant DNA technology, allowing mass cultivation and purification from bacterial cultures."
When I was in the hospital, I had this great nurse who used to explain all the meds before he gave them to me, and he told me that one of the reasons Interferon is so hard on the body is because the body reacts to the recombinant DNA the same way that it does an organ transplant, you know, since it's not made of your own DNA and stuff.
Anywho, I guess that's it for now. We've decided to keep the party scheduled for August 19th for now, and just hope I'll be done by then. If not, hey, it'll be a pre-celebration for the big event, and all of you, of course, are welcome.
Hope everyone of you is well. Keep in touch.