31 March 2000 :/
Some really really GREAT NEWS - Angela, (who I asked you all to send prayerto) Got the news that she does not have cancer - and the pregnancy is stable too..... wow.... isn’t that the best news. Thank you for all the prayers you send, they do getthere!
Today I was really nauseous.... but it was my own fault. Yup... see I thought that since I have not had the chemo in a month that perhaps I should cut back on the nausea meds...... anyway, I emailed the Moffitt Nurse yesterday.... and decided she would agree and stopped taking them .....heh ...... by the time I read her reply this afternoon .... saying that I should stay the course..... I had already missed 3 rounds of the meds and my tummy felt like I was on the “Batman” ride at Great Adventure...... hrm... (No, I’m not a doctor - but I played at it when I was a kid).
30 March 2000 :)
What a really nice day...... My Mom came over and shared lunch with me. She said that she noticed how much better I sounded. Then I called my friend Banu..... she also said that I sounded so grounded and also said I sounded totally cool...... coming from Banu, (who is one of the definitions of cool) it really made my whole week!
Our friend and neighbor, Mary, came over and had dinner with us... (which she cooked - and boy can this kid cook!) so it was a really fun day and we had friends come over and everything!
29 March 2000 :)
What a really great day. I got up and went off to get my cat scans all by myself! I’m not too sure why I went off on my own.... I just did. I have had them before and they are just so...... *snap* easy.
Trever and Shawn went to stay over at Mari’s, they’ll be back in the morning.
Please, if you would, say a prayer for a 17 year old girl...... Bridgett.... she really could use all the love and strength that she can get right now.... she’s in the hospital ‘cause of being anorexic and I know that prayer has magic.... Thankx for sending some to her :)
Best part of the day came in the evening.... Ross and Peter and Kristen (Ian’s cousins) all came over for dinner. It was so great to see them, they are so wonderful, Ian and I really enjoyed hanging out with them...... my energy level is not back to normal yet, so by 10:00 I was beginning to feel a bit sleepy, but that was more because I’m prone to taking my medications at 9:00 .... (and I also take sleeping pills) ...... so we said our goodnights around 10:00. I can’t wait to do it again though.... maybe even go out!!!!
Ross told us a story that I have to share..... (since I had my CAT scans today). It seems that there is this guy he knew who lived in this second floor apartment with his cat... (who had been de-clawed and always stayed inside).... due to the grading of the property the terrace, on the backside, was more like four stories off the ground. Well as the story was told to me...... One winter’s day he was particularly hot and opened his terrace door to cool the place down...... the cat seeing the outside was available made a mad dash for the balcony..... (cats will)However what made that day different from the others was the ice that covered the terrace floor..... and the cat had no claws... (remember - this was an INSIDE kitty)..... yup... you are now getting the same mental image that I have.... poor thing..... faster than the Russian Bobcat Team across the deck, and under the railing and over the edge.... Sadly this particular cat had apparently been on his ninth life at the time too. I know this is not a funny story, but for the life of me I cannot help hearing “Beep-Beep” and picturing a road runner poised precariously at the edge of the balcony in question....... can you?
28 March 2000 :(
Today I had to go to Westchester Medical. Got there nice and early and still had to wait ..... forever. But finally the work was done - we got home around 8:00PM - That’s a long day. Tomorrow I have to go get three Cat Scans.
Still strained between Ian and me.... and that really sucks.
27 March 2000 :/
Well today was a really weird day.... sort of.... just not on the mark. Shawn was feeling really groggy this morning he went in late.... and that really sums up the mood.
Tomorrow I have to go for a second EUS (That’s where they will take pictures of my esophagus but in the round). I’m getting that done in Westchester Medical, by the same guy who did the first.... Steve Heire.
26 March 2000 :)
Went to pick up the boys from my Mom’s.... they had a good time... and they behaved .... Yea!
I went over to Mariann and Robbie’s and showed them hoe to use their AOL....that was fun.
Got to see Kris and Melanie too, they came up for a fun visit and that was way cool.
25 March 2000 :)
Spent time... just Ian and me.... and it was good.
Went to the mall..... washed the car..... bought new sheets.... explored the very quaint village of New Paltz..... so many interesting stores and art galleries.
24 March 2000 :/
Ian and I did some fun stuff today. The boys got to9 stay with Auntie Mame, (that’s what they call my Mom)..... this way Ian and I could have a chance to hang out unfettered and footloose...... The guys are so angry with all the provisos that I levied upon their stay, that Shawn gave me a real bitter, knowing look before I left and said, “Ya know Dad.....we all get old.”
Learned something that at first was upsetting.... (sorry for the mystery, but I just won’t go into it)..... Lets simply say that life just has a special way of sending wake-up calls..... and it’s always good to listen real close.
On a better note: for dinner I had two dozen escargot.... they were great!
23 March 2000 :(
I went today with Mariann to go and hear what her Doctor had to say about the condition of her breast. Her Doctor’s first name is Theodora, which is one of my favorite names, and she was really nice. So far they have a good game plan.
Ian and I need some real work.... I’m not really sure when, but during this whole cancer crap I forgot that a relationship is either a living breathing organism - or the corpse of one. I guess I was too focused on dealing with this nuisance that I stopped noticing..... really noticing what Ian was experiencing and needing.... And the whole time he was right there.... in front of me..... taking care of me and I never saw what he was missing! Funny thing love..... easy to take for granted...... especially when you allow yourself to be so utterly distracted by a disease....... just a word to the wise.
The song of Macy Gray, "I'll Try" come to my mind....... perfect song.
22 March 2000 :/
There is still some adjustments happening here .... they seem to be taking their toll out on Ian and me...... silly stuff..... I have to just be patient. We really love each other so I’m sure it will all fall into place.
Got to visit with my brother Phil today.... that was really nice ‘cause I couldn’t really visit with him in Tampa, due to the low blood levels. It was really great to see him albeit briefly.
21 March 2000 :)
Today was a good one..... I am happy today, I noticed the difference.
Last night was just the opposite - I had two night sweating situations..... go figure!
The boys are working their way back to the middle.... the more acceptable course.... I will keep you posted.
Special prayers are so needed for some newlywed friends of ours, Angela and Brad, really bad.... see, she is 13 weeks into her first pregnancy and getting a biopsy on Wednesday...... Thank you as I always do for being generous with your prayers.
Take care to enjoy something that you would have ignored today..... something seemingly small..... like your pillow, for being so soft..... something.... anything
20 March 2000 :)
Well I have an appointment with the surgeon for April 4th.... just to meet and set up the surgery.
My Mom and Aunt Toni-Ann and Aunt Pam stopped over today, It was good to see them.
I’m in the midst of scheduling the 2nd EUS and the Cat Scans too.
19 March 2000 :)
You guys know me, so you know that I believe in the, “Sharing is Caring” kind of approach to things. I get E-mails from folks all over the world, yup..... kinda wild really all from a silly journal that I was gonna leave to my kids, (Before I decided to survive this cancer crap!) Some are well wishers... some are curious.... and some also could use a prayer or two themselves so in the spirit of “hey we’re all in this together”....... hrmphrmp ‘cause we are.... Please say a prayer for my friends,Tony, Mari, Anna, and Rusty. They need some too, Thankx. :)
Prayers are important..... so is having some fun..... With that in mind Ian and I went out to the movies. I saw what I think is the best picture of the year, (several years really) Erin Brockovitch - it is a must see (don’t hammer me if I screw up the spelling) Just go see it!
I felt stronger today than I did yesterday, and that’s great.... yeah!
18 March 2000 :/
Ian and I have known each other for five years and eleven months today.
A kid called today who sounded like a man and he was asking for Trever, I asked who he was and he gave his name. I asked him how old he was and he said 19 years old..... I politely informed him that there was nothing personal, but that they are not allowed to have 19 year old friends (they are 15) and that his kind understanding and agreement to remove them from his rolodex would save me the hassle of involving the police..... which I appreciated... he was quick to agree.
When I told Trever that he was not allowed to call or associate with this fellow, ‘cause he was 19 years old, his reply was sincere, “He can’t be 19 - he’s as tall as me!”..... yup....pearls of wisdom form the same guy who wants to drop out of school next year.... since there is little they can really teach him.....hrmmm.
Ian really is showing a lot of strain at having the guys around..... they are hard to live with ‘cause they are going through the hard parts of growing up..... making the transitions.... ya know. But they are mine.... lovin ‘em is mandatory.... liken ‘em is optional.
17 March 2000 :)
Today I started getting back into things a bit more.... I can feel the energy coming back.... that’s always a good thing.
I spoke to some clients and friends and to tell you the truth sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference... everyone is so wonderful and supportive.... it really is what life is all about!
Magic.... It snowed.... a lot.... everything is looking like a winters wonderland...... and that is something that I thought I would have missed altogether..... what a wonderful surprise.
16 March 2000 :\
Today was very much an upside-down, and inside-out sort of day. I went outside for the first time since I've been home.... I walked my dog and strolled around the house to see some of the flowers that Ian planted..... before all the cancer stuff.... kinda neat to see them.
I am hoping that tomorrow will be brighter.
The boys are starting to respond in a more agreeable fashion too...... Thank God!
15 March 2000 :)
For some unexplainable reason, last night was the lowest point of my entire experience thus far. I have no clue as to why. Perhaps it was the unrelenting bickering and constant arguing between the boys and me that contributed. Ian had his fill and he too was acting quite ‘over’ the whole ‘coming home’ thing. I laid the law down very firmly as to what I will and will not accept from my teenage sons..... and in no uncertain terms let them know that I meant business. But last night I saw.... like for the first time ... how overwhelming it really was and just broke down ......... I just felt like I was ‘fading’....... it was so horrible I cried for hours.... until I was stuffy and my head hurt..... It felt like I couldn’t control it myself. Did ya ever have one of those kinda nights?
This morning I WAS BRAND NEW. I decided not to take anymore shit from those two kids and have donned a wide leather belt which I wear as a pirate and when they want to separate my brain from my body I just whip the belt off and in an instant .. TADA - I BECOME SUPERDAD.... able to leap tall piles of bullshit with a single bound.....heh.... (with my brain still intact). They think I’m insane....but they are staying off my back......... muahahahahahah.
I woke Trever up at 6:30 and had him cleaning house before his afternoon class. Since he did not want to work outside the house, “Why should I, if you’re not gonna let me have ALL the money?”.... I told him he would be working inside for free.... ahhhh parenthood. Today alone he de-cobwebbed the cellar and washed all the windows....tomorrow our hero will be polishing the silver. He now views working outside the house as a viable possibility...... (gee Trever - ya think?)... hehe.
On a happy note.... Mariann and Robbie came over and brought the most exquisite Japanese lunch with them and we all had a wonderful lunch. We celebrated the fact that her biopsy went well.... should know the results soon.
14 March 2000 :/
Had a really long talk with the guys..... or “The Boyz of The Should” as I call ‘em..... worked out a bunch of stuff that will hopefully make a difference..... or maybe I should increase the prozack.... which would also make a difference..... hehe.
Tried to call Aunt Rusty... she was too groggy.
Mariann goes in for a biopsy tomorrow too.
WOWZER.... there's a world of shit to deal with here.
13 March 2000 :/
First night that I woke up without night sweats.... really.... a little damp, but not enough to worry about....*YEA*.
I kept Shawn home from school, ‘cause I wanted hang with them a little...... might do the same tomorrow... Trever doesn’t go to public school anymore.... he gets privately tutored, (long story), and I kept him out too.
Ian is acting a bit strange, but he doesn’t realize it..... I guess it’s not all fun and games, and maybe it’s all coming back to him.... so to speak.
My Aunt Rusty is out of the OR and doing OK.... Thank God. They had to “take more than they first thought, but they got it all”..... sweet. Thankx for all the prayers.
Still feeling like I was hit by a small, but solid truck.
12 March 2000 :)
Thing around the house all need some sort of attention, or adjustment.... especially the boys who are constantly letting me know that, “Mom let us....” ...... and so it goes. So I’m Back to square one with them and their antics, (But hey... I couldn’t care less..... we’re together.... I’m here now)
Had some discussion about house policy... gently.... trying to ease back into the pool.... if ya know what I mean...... it’s not going to be the easiest thing for anyone - them or me. Little by little.
Mom and Aunt Toni-Ann and Aunt Pam are all headed to New Jersey to be by Aunt Rusty’s side..... I should be there too.... but I can’t because now is when my white blood cells are at their lowest.... it’s all up hill from here, as long as I stay away from germs and stuff.
If you are reading this, please say a prayer for my Aunt Rusty... she means so much to so many... especially me.
11 March 2000 HOME :)
Got up way early....7:30am. Saved, showered, all that and went to Aunt Rusty again..... stayed for an hour and then at 9:30am we left for home.
Reached New Paltz and home...........finally.
The welcome from my boys and Scruffy was amazing and wonderful. We all had lunch, Mariann and Robbie and us. Later Kris, my oldest son and Melanie drove over from Connecticut to visit....God it was great to see them too.
There is a lot to do now... to retrain the dogs..... and the boys.... all in good time..... all in good time.
I’m Home. I cried at a couple points ‘cause I was really afraid that I might be in some hotel in South Carolina..... going through night sweats and just dreaming all this.... and then have to wake up.
But turns out it’s all true......... I’m home.
10 March 2000 :(
We didn't quit until we were in South Carolina!!! Not too shabby.
Well it appears that all the gains that were constant with each day have been temporarily de-railed due to the demands of traveling. We stop every so often and get gas and stuff. And each new state that we get to we have a “celebration” of sorts. But I would rather be lying in bed resting... I know that but I really need to support Ian’s desire to get home too.... He’s ready to be home. Me Too! I try not to make a fuss. Love listening to ‘Macy Grey’ and ‘Smash Mouth’.
While we were driving we planned to sleep in Virginia, but my Mom told me that my Aunt Rusty, whom I adore, was just diagnosed with cancer....... shit! She is at my cousin Stephanie’s hose in New Jersey. When I called she said that she would love to see me...... so Ian and I are going to drive to New Jersey... we can do it.
Got to Stephanie’s around 10:30pm and I hugged my Aunt and told her that everything was going to be fine.... that it was her decision......she was ready for the surgery that was scheduled for Monday.... It’s a contained tumor... Thank God, and her doctor is very confident..... SHE HAS TO BE OK!
9 March 2000 HOMEWARDBOUND :)
[[[IMPORTANT: I probably won’t be able to update stuff until we arrive in New Paltz... Friday, or Saturday or Sunday.... So stay tuned.]]]
Yup…. We are outa here and gladly wave good-bye to Tampa….. (which must be Indian for: “Most boring fucking place on the planet”).... hehehe.
8 March 2000 :)
Still better….. three night sweat ‘events’ … good…. Guess I’m getting all that yucky stuff out of my system…. Shouldn’t say ‘yucky’ stuff ‘cause it is helping to save my life and all. But it’s great to be getting back to feeling like a “Gino” and I am…… more and more.
Mariann said that her tests came back with good news…. Thank you for all the prayers.
Another really nice thing…. Ed took Ian and I out to dinner. We went to a wonderful Japanese Restaurant and even had a room in the traditional style and sat barefooted on the floor. It was wonderful and we all had the best time. Ed’s gonna come over in the morning and have see us off.
7 March 2000 :)
Today Started off really well and I, again feel better than the day before. The night sweats persist, though and I cannot wait for them to become a distant memory. I have noted that they are always at the same time…. 4:30 – 4:45 am.
Aunt Toni Ann reached home safe and sound, I spoke with her a few times. God she was such an angel to me…. It was wonderful to have the chance to hang out with her….. even if it wasn’t all “quality” time.
Ian and I went on a Wildboyz Adventure…. Sorta…. While a local Nissan dealer was changing the oil and checking the fluids and stuff….. ya know…… in preparation for Thursday – we went on a two hour “on our own just roaming around for fun thing.” It was great fun!!!! Hummm…. Our TRIP Thursday….. Home…(what a beautiful four-letter word)…. Things there are a little fucked up – it’s true…. But who cares… Ian and I will fix things ….. one step at a time.
I’ll fill you in more later…. After I’m home.
Home……… (sigh) :)
6 March 2000 :)
Tried something new today… tried to go without the nausea medications…..can we say BIG MISTAKE. Ohmigod I won’t be trying that again anytime soon. After I started taking them again it got better. (The world stopped turning and turning and….)
On a sad note, my Cousin Kristen’s cat was run over by a car...*ouch* ...So Aunt Toni-Ann decided to fly home tomorrow and be there for her daughter... She and Ed stopped over today.
Went to the Hospital and got my medical stuff together for the trip to Albany.
Today was also an interesting one because I found myself becoming like, up and down emotionally……. And also in body temperature….. hot one minute….. cold the next…(echhhh)
Really Important: Tomorrow my Best Friend, Mariann needs to have everybody say a prayer for her ….. ‘cause she has to go for a special test…. Please say one for her…. She is the best and really deserves them.
5 March 2000 :)
Good day… went out to the movies with Aunt Toni-Ann and Ed..... We saw a funny movie....”Drowning Mona”.... I thought it was great!
Ate pretty well today.... That’s good. Feeling better and better in degrees..... but I don’t have the patience for this crap!..... ‘UNCLE’ ALREADY..... just get it done!
4 March 2000 :/
Sometimes I lose patience with how fucking slow all this recuperation is taking. I’m ready to get the show on the road already. Since I’m not the most patient fellow by nature..... (this might be a good sign).... in a twisted sort of way ...hehe.
Aunt Toni-Ann checked out today...... She is going to be staying with Ed.... not too far away...... but.... Ian and I will be (dun-dun-dun-dun) On our own.
I’m getting so homesick now that I have dreams where I’m walking around my home .... knee deep in snow and laughing. Soon boys..... soon.
3 March 2000 :/
Each day just feels better and better in little ways.... that’s a good thing.
Mom flew home today... no problem I’m OK and know that I too will bee there soon. If I can continue to feel good we are planning to get out of here next week. I just keep praying that the blood levels that the doctors are looking for are in the areas that they want - whatever that is.
There is a little squirrel here that seems to like me. Every day he comes over to where I sit and stares at me.... I stare right back. He likes the almonds that I give him and even takes them right off the top of my sneaker..... pretty cool. He stands there for a while nibbling it then takes off to bury it in the courtyard.
Aunt Toni-Ann has stayed, her boyfriend Ed came down from New York to hang out with her too.
Spoke to the lawyer today about the case.... she feel good about things.... guess that’s always nice... huh?
I’m weighing in at 199 lbs these days.... Getting better if you ask me that is.
2 March 2000 :)
Well, I sure feel better today than I did yesterday, all in subtle degrees. Trying to eat is the big thing. I’ll get these ideas that I can eat something and by the time we get the stuff I’m over it or I try and can’t. Gotta let the esophagus settle down over the next few weeks. So far I have lost some weight.... I’m down to 199 (not bad)... we knew that would happen to a point....( I think I look better to tell the truth).... sorta happy... hehe.
Mom is getting ready to head back to New York tomorrow..... it’s time. She has been such a tremendous help in so many ways...... I’ll see her soon.
Each night is less ‘icky’ too. The night sweats that they will tell you are part of the program are lessening. Yeah, I would wake Ian and he would get a new night shirt.... help me change.... and have the hair dryer ready to warm me up all over and dry the bed linens.... what a chore.... God Bless Ian
1 March 2000 LAST DAY OF TREATMENT :)
By 11:30am this should be the end of the ‘Crap-N-Zap’ part of the program and I should be on my way to getting the pump removed............... YEAH!!!!!