Thursday, November 27, 2008

Blogging LIVE from KETTERING MEMORIAL HOSPITAL!!! (Special thanks to Dad's co-workers Lisa for loaning me the laptop, Ron for the wireless card and Orville & Marie for tech support - You have no idea what joy this machine has brought to my world this week!)

Well, as you may have figured out, I did not get my second Abraxane treatment on Monday. I woke up at Mom & Dad's, and was so exhausted and out of breath that taking a 5 min shower turned into a half hour event....sit up on the couch, sit for five min to catch my breath....walk upstairs to the bathroom, sit dow for 10 min to catch my breath. Take a five min shower, sit for 15 min drying off and getting dressed, breathing like I just completed the biggest endurance test of my life. But I needed to get to Romer's I needed to get that second tx of Abraxane.

My counts werent stellar, but my exhaustion was pretty evident to Joni and she didnt waste any time paging Romer, who said no chemo, and to have me admitted asap. So Joni taped up my already accessed port and mom & I headed off to Kettering. It was freezing and raining, and I felt like absolute CRAP.

We arrived at the hospital around 9am Monday, and it wasnt long before I was getting another CT scan and a chest X-Ray. Monday and the last four days have been a blur of pleasant visits, a consistently poor appetite with the exception of a Marion's pizza, a little more vomiting than Im used to, and a growing love affair with the pain killer Dilaudid.

These blood transfusions have really been the highlight of the last few months havent they? Not such a big deal anymore. Im half asleep on Monday night and they inform me Ill be getting another two units of blood that night, and platelets in the morning since Id be having another thorocentisis at noon the next day. Really? Ok, Im going to bed now. No joke. They might as well have told me they were turning the light on. I slept right through it. Mom was up for the whole 2-nurse confirmation process when they bring the blood and make damn sure the patitient is getting the right blood, but as far as my memory is concerned, it may never even happened.

So Mandi, my ya-ya who got the flowers I posted a few blogs ago stopped out Tuesday after my procedure....she's above checking out the room service menu that Ive had a really hard time picking out from since I have zero appetite (Cant WAIT to go clothes shopping when all of this gets better, PS)
So this young guy shows up to take me to some test, a CAT scan maybe? When the transporters show up, they always have to help "Undo" me....from the oxygen, from my saline IV drip, and the cardiac monitor that is one of the most annoying conraptions ever. Five sticky tabs that cover my chest that are all hooked to cords that all hooked to a monitor slightly smaller than one of those blue ice blocks you use in a small cooler.
The hospital gowns also have this "Convienient" pocket that you can drop this five pound monitor in, making a saggy gown that much worse. Add to that I havent worn a bra in like three weeks, and Kristen alerted me to my exposed nipple when she and Watts were here later that day.
So anyway, you can pop all the cords out of this monitor temporarily and the guy says, "I can just pop your box" or something to that effect....I immediately look at Mandi with this devilish grin and she doesnt waste anytime before blurting out, "OH....Melissa! He's gonna pop your box, Im telling John!" We start laughing....young guy makes no comment.
I was pleased to see that Mr. No-sense-of-humor guy took me to my scan by way of 3West, where I was two weeks ago, and I was excited to see Mary, the nurse who took care of me during my first lung tap and mixed me a fabulous cocktail at the nurses bar of warmed apple and prune juice for, well, you know.
I see her and excitedly say, "Mary!" and she says, "Hey!" and Box-popper transporter guy keeps moving right along. I think he was making me pay for our sick sense of humor.
Anyhoo, Mary swings over to my room when he shift was over and made sure she got my blog address so she could see the pictures I had posted - She came in yesterday and made me a mixed CD! As I started to write this blog, mom was reading, and I played the CD on the laptop, but it was so good I knew mom would like it too, so I just pulled the headphones and now mom and I are jamming to Mary's "Merry Mix" - GREAT STUFF!!

Ok, enough yapping....KJ & Watts pose for a picture, Watt's eyes glued firmly towards the camera.

Stacy and Luke came to visit Tuesday and about seventeen nurses fell in love with Luke. They were filing in and out of my room, and I hear he gave a rip-roaring performance of cuteness at the nurses station:

Oh yeah, did I mention I had to get ANOTHER thorocentisis on Tuesday? Yeah. Same lung. 800 ml removed two weeks ago, 1000 ml removed this time....IN. THE. SAME. LUNG. You know me, always gotta top myself.....

Not too shabby on the flowers, huh? Too bad they deemed me "Neutropenic" today and I had to get rid of all of them (dont worry, dad just took them home). I guess it just means my white cells sucks and everyone has to wear a mask when they come in.

This bed is getting too big......Ive found hospital beds are great for snuggling and watching tv.

J-Mac came and stayed with me Wednesday night and learned the finer points of an interruption-full nights sleep in the hospital. He did not sleep well.

Dad hopped in and we watched Jerry Springer, how appropriate.

While I love all my visitors equally, seeing this one unexpectedly walk though the doors most certianly tipped the scales. I havent seen Lola in probably over two years. I could seriously blow enough sunshine up Lola's you-know-what to send her back to Baltimore at no charge, but I will just say that her visit gave me an opportunity to sincerely thank her for a time when her genuine support single-handedly catapulted me on a much more positive direction during a time in my life that was drowning in fear and concern. I need a WWLD bracelet that I can look at when I need to attack situations with joy and love and enthusiasm. I love you LOLA!!! And thanks for making me look so pasty!! tee hee hee.

You didnt think you'd get to the end of this without a slide show of Drew's visit to Aunt Fort did you??

More hospital bed cuddling.....

Well, this was my first Thanksgiving in a hospital, and I could almost GUARANTEE that in all my 30 years, the Thanksgiving with the LEAST calories consumed - seriously, I bet I consumed fewer calories than I did at 11 months.
As many of you may have known, the next procedure on the block they were talking about was to insert a chest tube that would be used to A) serve as a semi-permanent drainage tube for 2-3 days and B) insert medicine that would "Seal up" the space between my lungs and my chest wall. We were pretty sure this was going to happen today or tomorrow.
Tonight I went and had another ultrasound on my lungs - just over 500 ml in EACH lung. Word from the nurse was that the doc was considering discharging me. Ill talk to him in the morning though. Im not comfortable leaving this place with another combined 1000 ml of fluid in my lungs, especially since the right lung just had a liter removed and has another 500 ml just after two days.
Im getting another chest x-ray in the morning and he's going to re-assess.
Its hard to believe Ive been here for a week now. Honestly, I cant say that Im feeling much better and the doctors arent giving me much hope that all of this is going to disappear.
The good news is that I know Ill be getting better relatively soon, whether its the chemo, or God, or all the prayers and positive energy coming my way. I cannot WAIT to get back to work, to get my lung capacity back, AND walk in the 2009 3-Day with all the ya-yas. IM SO IN!!
A few more things.....
MARY THIS CD IS AWESOME! Im on my second rotation!
Sorry to all the people calling me who Im not calling back. I havent been in a phone mood for a really long time - that also goes for all the unresponded MySpace and Facebook comments....Im reading them all & Im sorry If I dont respond!!! I love you all!!! that I have this laptop at my beckon call, things should improve communication wise.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post Fort! The pictures are great and doing nothing but praying for you:) I'm sorry you weren't too hungry for Thanksgiving, but you can make it up at scrap casino in February! Love you, Jami

Nancy Kramer said...

Love you and thinking of you!

Misti said...

Fort - Alex and I would come see you, but I am fighting a nasty cold and I am sure that you don't need my germs. But I am thinking about you and sending you positive thoughts! When you are feeling better, we can have Thanksgiving, Part 2. Tony makes the BEST turkey in the world. No one should have to miss out on an excuse to consume massive amounts of food in one sitting.

Karyn said...

Hey girl, thinking of you and praying for you...keep on fighting!

Annie said...

I appreciate the update! You're on my mind daily and I'm sending you lots of love, prayers, and feeling- good vibes! Looking forward to hearing the news of you getting your strength and appetite back.

Anonymous said...

Mo - Just letting you know that your in our hearts and prayers every minute of day 24/7. Your the most amazing person we know and Willie-mo says he he can't wait to give you a big hug & kiss
Bobby, Judy and Willie