(5) A Change In Plans

A-Change-In-Plans-194x300Eileen and I went to the cancer center today (July 6th) and had a class about what to expect with the chemotherapy.  While we were there having class, two things brought about a change of plans in my chemotherapy schedule.

One is that (based on the bruising on my arms from needles over the past 10 days) my veins are not an easy target, and sometimes they gush like a garden hose but then quickly lose pressure, forcing the nurse to pierce again in another spot.  (This has always happened to me over the years and is not a reflection on the skills of the nurse.) The nurses and I decided that having the first series of chemo directly into a vein, and not into a port, would not be pleasant. (I had already been scheduled to have the port put in on Wednesday.)

Second, I had not had a MUGA test.  A MUGA test is the process of taking some blood out of my arm, mixing it with radioactive “stuff” and then injecting it back into my arm. Four 6-minute videos are taken to track the radioactivity through my heart. A MUGA test is mandatory before starting chemo to have a benchmark of heart performance.

All leading to today’s change in plans.  Instead of starting the chemo, Eileen and I left the cancer center and went to the hospital where I had my MUGA.  Now my first chemo session will be Wednesday, July 15th. This will give my port a week to heal before it is used. Also, rather than take the 4 chemo drugs (MVAC) over two days, we decided to do them all in one day. This does not impact the side effects (like make them worse) – it is strictly a more convenient method. It only means a longer day. So on the 15th I will have many, many hours to blog and tell you all about what I’m feeling (Eileen will be with me to edit).

The book illustrating this post is A Change In Plans by Paul Cook.  I recently received a note from his widow Susan Knutsen-Cook reminding me that without Paul here, it’s a sure thing that I’m missing out on all kinds of bladder cancer jokes. It’s true – and there’s no doubt they’d be funny. He always made me laugh. I and everyone in the St. Charles Writers Group truly miss him. (Click on the book cover to learn more about Paul.)

6 thoughts on “(5) A Change In Plans”

  1. Been thinking about you two all day and wondering. Mike, you are truly an amazing person. Love your sense of humor as well as your ability to take in information and then relay it to those who are interested.
    Know that you and Eileen are in my thoughts almost constantly.

  2. You are inspiration to all of us and know we all have your back . You are always on our mind (oh isn’t that a song) and prayers. Love TAL

  3. Great news on the port. Seriously, such ease for all involved to give you your cocktails. Prayers said often for peace and comfort for you and Eileen.

    Paul, oh my, miss him. Saw his widow and she told me they had laid him to rest. Little did I know I walk by his final resting place every time I walk to the river, or bike, or drive to work. He was so close and I never knew.

    Not a grave dweller by nature, Eugene, Lily Belle and I are wearing a path to see him at least weekly.


  4. I, like Sue, have been wondering about how things went today. It sounds like you’re taking the changes of plan “in stride,” (which, now that I think about it, sounds like a horse term). Thank you for treating us to your humor and including us in the updates. Much love to you both. <3

  5. Mike: Great blog. I agree about the jokes. Paul would be all over this. He had a special place in his heart for you.

  6. Hi Mike, I’m going to “ditto” Sue & Anita’s comments. We were thinking about you all day yesterday, and are glad for the updates. We missed your 4th of July party this year and were talking about how many years they go back…. I remember parties with George and Ann and Garry and when Brad was a little guy, Roland and Gladys, hayrides and all our friends… a lot of good memories. And, we are looking forward to next year’s party. We’ve mentioned to Eileen but will say again, any help you need, just ask, and count on us for help with the horses. Sending hugs and kisses and prayers. Love, Rob & Barb

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