10 February – back to the grind

I report back to the hospital today. I didn’t sleep that well last night, probably due to being slightly keyed up over my return. I awoke way too early, my brain already spinning over the things I still needed to pack. I was showered and out in the kitchen by 6:30 and got a bit of breakfast, then finished the packing. Got everything out to the car and then we gathered the girls and we were off. We dropped them off at school and I got good hugs from both of them. They’re such wonderful young women and I’m so very proud of them. Oh, I forgot to mention in my last post that Leyna was busy in the kitchen yesterday afternoon making ravioli. Home made ravioli. Let that sink in. She had the stand mixer out, the pasta roller attachment hooked up, and was rolling out long wide sheets of pasta dough that she then filled, cut and crimped. Apparently the family meal tonight was truly spectacular. She made a cream-based pasta sauce and paired the pasta with simply prepared broccoli. She sent me a picture. Holy moly, it looked good.

Okay, back to the hospital. Rory got me here before 9 this morning but I had to wait a bit longer this time for my room. I’m now on the opposite side of the south tower with a view facing south – southwest. Once the skies clear I’m going to have full sun streaming through my windows, which I’m really looking forward to. I should also be able to see downtown San Antonio as well as some of the Hill Country. Overall, a much better setup and not nearly as gloomy.

So, things started out pretty slowly this morning. I was left to my own devices for a couple hours and then a tech came in and installed a new PICC line, this time in my left arm. While she was running an ultrasound on my arm she discovered that I have veins about the size of a small child’s, which may explain why I had such issues with the first catheter. It was normal sized and today Christina (the tech) installed a smaller one. Hopefully this will alleviate the complications I had previously.

After lunch, I was swept off to radiology, where I had both a bone marrow biopsy AND a spinal tap/chemo injection into the spinal column. I couldn’t be sedated this time due to the large lunch I’d had, so I had locals instead. The biopsy wasn’t comfortable, but the spinal tap was EXCRUCIATING. The tech must have hit a nerve with his needle because I suddenly felt a hot burning sensation starting at the injection site and extending all the way down into my right hip region. OUCH.

So, apparently this new round of chemo will be different from the first. I’ll be given different drugs, which may or may not make me sick, and from the way Dr. Santiago described it last night, the treatment will be quicker than the first. No Red Devil this time but I don’t know the names of the other chemo drugs and so can’t look up the side effects. Still, I’m bracing for impact and filling up now on whatever hospital food I find palatable because I’m expecting more mouth sores and a possible wacky shift in sense of taste. Once the chemo drugs are administered, I’ll once again be kept here while my cell counts bottom out and then begin to recover.