Monday, September 22, 2008

My Spinal Tap

Last Friday, as they often do in Cancerville Clinic, my doctor sprung an exciting procedure on me: a spinal tap! Yippee! While not as common with AML, some forms of leukemia have been known to reoccur in the spinal fluid; as a precautionary measure, my doc wanted to perform a spinal tap to check for blasts in the fluid and to inject a tiny amount of chemotherapy into the fluid as well.

Yeah buddy, I've literally got chemo on the brain. Accounts for all the weird-o dreams I've been having.

When the nurse practitioner started to get set up for the procedure, he said to me, "So you've had one of these before, right?" I shook my head.

"What did you do when you had your son?" (He's referring here to epidurals.)

I gave him my best raised eyebrow and cock-eyed smile that said, "Crazy Woman."

"Oh." The nurse practitioner now thinks I am the biggest badass ever.

The spinal tap was actually less invasive than my bone marrow biopsies, and I got to see what my spinal fluid looks like (Water. So boring.).

I am beginning to get addicted to being poked.

This Thursday I am being held hostage by the bone marrow team for more pre-transplant tests and yet ANOTHER bone marrow biopsy. Goodie gumdrops.

If all continues to go well with me and these test results, I will be locked up for my long stretch in the Big House on October 2. The day before I will be getting another port inserted in the left side of my chest. Yee Haw. More holes. On the second, I'll start my first of six full body radiation treatments, followed by intensive chemotherapy. Then I get my transplant. Basically, the bone marrow team will kill me, and it's up to me to raise myself from the dead.


So for now I am trying to have a good time and enjoy my freedom, my family, and feeling healthy. The White Coat Folks have me on so many antibiotics that I swear I could spit on a wound and heal it. One of the antibiotics is actually used to prevent and treat anthrax. Who's rockin' the preparedness now? Another of my pills cost $200 for a 30 day (twice a day) regimine. That's after my insurance company kicked in $2,000. Da-Amn. Here's a stock tip: Buy Pfizer.

After several days of looking like a possum with mange, I am shaving off what little hair I have left. Back to the cue ball look it is. At least for the next few months.

For any of you awesome readers out there in the RVA area, this Friday night we're getting together at Dominion Shooting Range for some firearm-assist therapy, followed by dinner at Capital Alehouse. I've been jonesin' to fill a couple of paper targets with lead before this crazy procedure. Feel free to come and join my motley crew.

Oh and one more thing, I reviewed my fourth book in Cannonball Read, the highly popular The Shack, and it's up on Pajiba. Here's a little hint: I hated it. Read at your own risk.


Chris S said...

Nothing relieves stress like good aromatherapy, mainly the smell of burnt gunpowder, coupled with the sound of spent brass hitting the floor! Burn off a few magazines for me, wish I could come visit before your incarceration. Take care my main Co-Dean!

Girl With Curious Hair said...

Just so you know, I also think you're the biggest bad ass ever.

Rusty said...

I'll be thinking of you on October 2nd and all the days after. I'm signed up for the bone marrow registry, but so far I've never been called. Reading about your experiences has already decided the question of what I'll do if I am called, though.

Anonymous said...

You ARE the biggest badass ever! I think we should all promise to run the Marine Corp Marathon or something equally sweat and pain producing in 2009! Like, if you can do this, all the rest of us can get back in shape....and we can take turns pushing Little A!


ev said...

So I saw you Sunday and you did not look like a possum with mange.
Sorry I haven't called yet - work has been rough so far and I had a pre-baby class last night and doctor & new church photo tonight.
I am going to the deacon-raffle dinner tomorrow, though they aren't serving anything appealing to me. Loving the pregnancy food aversions. So ready to just be not picky again.

We are joining you out on Friday. Maybe Sunday or Monday we could do dinner just the four (or five) of us.

Anaya said...

I'll be thinking of you next week. Been reading your blog for a while but never posted before. Hugs from the UK.

Lisa B

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