I haven't written in a few days. The inevitable end of Phase I has been with me since Wednesday of this week as my med team simply watched my daily lab numbers move towards normal. Cancer treatment runs on a calendar, it's probably the only time in my life that I've adhered so rigidly to one, but as it turns out I'm right on schedule. I entered UCH on the 09/06, I'm departing on 10/06, the end of phase I.
I'll do this next round of preparation from home receiving treatment as an out patient every other week until December. It will be another heavily calendared event accompanied by a very strict regime of oral medication designed to rid my body of chemo in a precise number of hours after each infusion. I assume that some of this medication will fortify other parts of my system against chemo, while making others more receptive. It will take a few days to become familiar with each.
However, that's not until the 15th. Until then I have this week and weekend off to readjust to being in the larger world and my new home. Zach, Erica and Kate come for a visit next weekend and my sister will come in on the 14th. She's my donor and we'll spend the next week together as out patients and tourists. She's never spent any time in the city so this is going to be fun. I plan to do everything that a tourist would do- from double decker busses to observation decks, to lake tours. Given that she thinks that Phoenix traffic is bad, I believe I'll just take her on a few expressway trips as a point of contrast. Any way MJ and I plan to have some fun- it will be wonderful to be home and perhaps become the "big lug" in the living room. Actually, there's little I'd like better than a "honey-do" list.
Lastly, this has been an amazing experience. Writing these entries, talking/writing to people I haven't seen in years, having a steady round of friends be with me on a nearly daily basis bringing food, books, cd's, dvd's, but most of all themselves, fully alive, funny, interested and generous in spirit and time. Feeling loved is one of the most important emotions we can have in our lives. In times like this it probably is more important than the complicated chemistry and its rigid application, while it may make you better, it doesn't fill your soul and heart with love and a sense that you matter. That's what this experience has done for me. Cancer is a very focusing event. You can let it be an event driven by fear or elevated by love. Mine has been the latter and this is a small and very inadequate thank you for bringing me so much, for telling me directly that I matter and have mattered, for being honest and open and full of the spirit of life and the elixir of love.
Thank you, we'll be talking in a few weeks.