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Wildflower Seed on the Sand and Stone

December 10, 2021 - Day -6

Blogging Tunes: Grateful Dead: San Diego - 2/20/82

This is my view as I author this blog.  So happy to be on the north side of Long this time around!

Just like my transplant 1.0 admit day 10.5 years ago, yesterday was quite the busy day.  Heather and I left San Rafael around 9:45a en route to UCSF Parnassus for my 10:30a labs appointment.  As we were crossing the bridge, this tow-truck looking thing with a loud siren pulled ahead of us and started weaving back and forth.  It slowed traffic to 5mph for 3 or 4 minutes.  We have no clue why.  If there was any disturbance or problem, it was cleared by the time he sped up and let traffic flow.

Fun tidbit, we were listening to a rousing edition of Stump the Booey on the way into the city.  Spoiler: John Hein actually beat Fla-fla-flo-high, and they both beat Heather and me.

After my blood draw (labs), I went to down one floor for a chest X-ray.  Here's a 180-degree pano of the the view from the third floor.  Notice how dirty the windows are compared to the ones in my room (above.)  That's because unlike 400 Parnassus my windows (at the building across the street) are completely shielded from the wind by the wing to the West and North.  Clean windows make all the difference but this pano is pretty cool.

I was waiting a long time for the X-ray, to the point where it was going to screw up the rest of the schedule for the day if they didn't get it done quickly.  Had I not inquired, and then (nicely but firmly) pushed for them to find another person to help out, I would have had to abort the appointment altogether in order to make my next appointment.  Fortunately, it didn't come to that.

Of course all my "counts" -- the results of my "labs" -- were great.  Honestly, this past week, I've felt as good as I have in months... that's what remission is all about.  I even got some good Peloton rides in with my pal ejs.  But that's all about to change.  

My 1:00p appointment was to get my "central line" (aka Hickman Line.)  This is where they essentially connect a tube to one of your main veins and thread it out your chest so it's easy to give you chemo, draw blood, and give you other meds.

Warning: a PG-13 pic follows.

Here I am all prepped and ready to go:

And here's the line installed:

Unlike some of the dazed and confused folks in the recovery area they didn't have to keep me there since I refused all meds other than the local numbing (lidocaine.)  The Hickman is still pretty sore -- and will be for a day or two -- but I really didn't wanna be doped up on the first night.

Next stop?  My room for the next 4+ weeks on the 11th or 12th floor of the "Long" hospital.  Apparently, my room wasn't quite ready, so I asked if I could go across the street to the food court for my last real meal.  One of the people said "Yes" but then it turned out that I couldn't since I was already officially "admitted" to the hospital.  

Fast forward 30 mins when I able to get moved into my room -- around 3:45p -- I told Caitlin (my nurse) the story of how I hadn't eaten since 6:45a -- 6 hours of fasting required for the Hickman procedure, since they expect you to get all kinds of drugs, duh -- so she offered to go across the street for me.  The result?  A fine, greezy, Panda Express combo meal with my name on it!

It was gone in about 5 minutes.  Complete inhalation.  I probably could have eaten two containers, but also probably best that I didn't.  😀 Oh, check out the fortune in my fortune cookie!

Sounds about right.

So after my (likely) final meal from the outside world in 2021, I started to get a little more settled.  Of course, once again, my lappie didn't play nice with the Wi-Fi here.  There was only one reasonably close ethernet port and fortunately, it was live.  So we're up and running.  Heather had dropped my suitcase and keyboard at Benji's, and he brought them up for me around 6:15p... thanks, B!

The north facing room with the little built-in desk makes this experience much better than last time.  When I want to blog or work or whatever, I put my lappie on the desk.  When I want to play music, the lappie can go on the window ledge and the keyboard can go on the desk.

Some visits from nurses and other staff followed and then, after some crazy-ass football -- thank you Minnesota for not screwing me (and Travis) over two weeks in a row by allowing a TD on the last play -- it was chemo time.  Yup... they start you with the chemo right away.  Starting last night and continuing for 4 more nights, I get fludarabine each night.  

I didn't sleep that well -- was up from about 4:45 to 6:15a but eventually got back to sleep -- and felt a little groggy and kinda-dry-skin-like in the morning, but other than that, no ill effects yet.  They'll be coming I'm sure.

OK... that's enough for now.  Gotta do some laps.  At least I'm not connected to my Trans-PAL so the walk will be a little more normal.



  1. Welcome back to the neighborhood. Sending love over a much shorter distance!

  2. You're a f'n warrior! Great that you've felt strong ahead of this phase. Love the fortune, sizzle chest! Keep it up.


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