Friday, July 10, 2009

Ten Fun-filled Hours with Anna

I had a blast with Anna yesterday! When she pulled up, I was outside chatting with Lou and weeding the flower beds. (Wednesday's Decadron made it impossible to just sit quietly on the porch; also made it impossible to sleep at all Wednesday night.)

Do you know that I tried to talk Anna out of staying with me all day? No one had ever sat with me through chemo before. I had been a little worried about what it would be like to have someone there that I might potentially have to entertain for many hours, but that was silly. We entertained each other talking about everything under the sun. A gossip magazine devoted to Michael Jackson kept us busy for a loooong time! Plus, for long periods we quietly did our own thing (I was making huge mistakes with Tetris and could not get a good score, so I switched back to reading a charming old Betty Neels romance first published in 1977). I tried not to take advantage of having Anna there, but gosh it was awesome to have someone to go get me a soda!

But the really amazing thing that happened when we were leaving the Duke Food Court with our takeout lunches. Anna saw an old friend Eve and her husband sitting at a table eating an early lunch. Anna had been trying to find this old friend for long time and had searched the phone book as recently as a few weeks earlier with no luck. And here she was! Eve and Anna had a super but quick reunion with lots of hugs. They exchanged contact info. It was as if God had planned the whole thing, and my chemo was just an easy way to get these ladies to cross paths. Cool.

The chemo went really well, even though this was the "tough" day with both the easy chemo and the hard chemo. This time, I was in the back of the big room treatment room. Instead of watching the drama at the nurse's station, I got to surveil the cool curtained-off rooms with beds all along the back wall. You get a bed and privacy curtain and a Jack-and-Jill bathroom if you have chemo that takes a long time.

Nurse Jamie took care of me and showed me that I have a call button on my TV remote so that I could call her at any time. Well! If I had know about that, I would not have been stuck for 12 minutes last week after the final bag emptied. Oh, I am relieved to report that Nurse Ellen stopped by to say hello, and I had the opportunity to apologize for getting upset last week over that 12 minute wait.

We left Duke at 4:25PM and flew home in light traffic. I was thrilled to give Anna a tour of the house (whew, it was clean), then Lou and I had dinner, and he left for poker night. I made a quick fresh fruit run to Harris Teeter. I wanted watermelon, but saw that cherries are drastically on sale at $1.97 lb with my Harris Teeter discount card. Yum! Reminders of living in Washington State!

I was in bed by 8:30PM and slept soundly till 3:30AM. (Did not wake up when Lou got home after poker, so I can't report whether he won or lost.) Seven hours of sleep, pretty good. I feel great and plan to get to work in time for the 8:00AM staff meeting (so early so that our international coworker can join in). By 2:00PM I need to be back at Duke for the Neulasta shot, which will boost my bone marrow and elevate my blood counts and give me bone pain.


omerandpat said...

On July 9 Anya made a comment about you using your blogs to write a book. Darn good idea. Its the first thing I do every morning--check to see if you added anything so I can report to Omer.
Love ya,

Anonymous said...

Hi Chickie!

Was so good hearing your voice on Wed.

I love reading your blog...Whata great day! God sure does amazing things, doesn't He?

Don't forget you owe me a phone call about the visit we discussed...I am going to hold you to it! Remember I have a surprise for you...and you are really going to like it....

Enjoy your weekend! I love you!

Robyn said...

The above comment was from me, the computer challenged friend who can't seem to remember how to type today!

Anonymous said...

Hi Karen!!

I am so glad you are doing OK still with the Chemo treatments. What a blessing to have so many friends there to help you. I wish I was closer to do more than telephone pep talks!! I will call you this weekend to catch up. Love you and Lou both tons,
Debbie P.

Anonymous said...

Hi. My name is Larry Bowman. I am an old air force buddy of Ned Tighe. My wife is going thru the third round of breast cancer. Had her port installed yesterday. Will be reading your post as we travel God's road together.

Karen said...

Hey Larry, I was just talking to some friends last night about what a God send a port is. So much easier to get the chemo without getting jabbed and blowing out arm veins every week. Good luck to your wife and you.


gtate said...

Karen, Mo & I think about you and Lou often. Lets us know when you are ready for Sushi or Breakfast at Mimi's? We are here for you anytime. Did you see our new porch? With love, Gail

Hanneke said...

Hi Karen,

I've never posted anything on a blog before. I guess I'm never too old and it's never too late. I think it's a great way of keeping us all up to date and give us a chance to cheer you on. I'm so glad to hear that you are surrounded by such wonderful friendswho through their support and care canmake your load a little lighter. Take care Karen. Say hi to Lou. Love, Hanneke