20 March, cycle 2A – lockdown, day 3

I get my last dose of chemo today for this round. Which means I’ll once again be hooked up to the IV pump, but hopefully not for long. I think I’ve gotten a bit spoiled! Drifting about without trailing IV tubes is rather nice and I can dive into the shower whenever I please, as long as I have a fresh supply of clean towels.

One of my nurses yesterday took pity on me and brought me a couple bags of decent English Breakfast tea, my drink of choice for the mornings. The organic stuff from HEB that I had brought with me to the hospital was truly awful – it tasted like weak warm hay with no satisfying tannic after-bite. Rory bought me a brand-new box of P&G Tips, a really good everyday British tea, but he forgot to bring it with him the last time he came to visit. Oh, well… it’ll be waiting for me when I get home!

It’s a little after 12 noon and I’m once again hooked up to my tether. The chemo will run for only 15 minutes but I may be back on fluids for a few days. I was also given steroids this morning with the rest of my meds. *Sigh* All these damn meds…

My nurse, Lauren, this little bitty will-o’-the-wisp with huge blue eyes and blond hair for miles, asked me tentatively how I was doing with all the coronavirus hysteria going on. The poor thing must have needed to vent a little because she looked genuinely freaked out. Her mom has lupus and her husband works in this hospital as well, in orthopedics, so for her the threat is compounded. I told her that there will most likely be some very hard times ahead for all of us, that this viral threat is something that our species hasn’t had to deal with in living memory, but that it won’t last forever. We have sequenced the virus’ genetic code, something that wasn’t even a pipe dream during the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, and our scientists know soooo much more now about how epidemics spread, that if we keep our collective heads, put some trust in our best scientific minds, stop with the ridiculous conspiracy theories, open our hearts to our fellow humans and just dig in, we can do this. This is an order of magnitude higher than the WWII war effort but we as a species are capable of achieving amazing things, providing we aren’t trying to kill each other. We’ve dealt with other lethal diseases: polio, small pox, the Black Plague, SARS, the H1N1 virus, and we’ve somehow found a way to defeat these, or at least beat them back somewhat. I think this is something that Lauren needed to hear. She just wanted someone to say that it was going to be okay, and it will be, eventually. Not really sure how we’re going to get there from here but we’ll find a way.

At the risk of sounding a bit (alright, more than a bit) airy-faerie, I think I must be emitting some sort of calm healing vibe, because I’ve had more than one young nurse draw comfort from what I’ve been able to tell them. Back when I was working at IGT in Reno, I would regularly have some of the junior designers drift into my cube just to hang out and chill. The same thing happened when I had my own office at 7th Level in Glendale. I was even once told that I put out a brilliant healing light. Okaaaay… I don’t know about that last one, but I do know that I seem to be able to comfort those who need it. I think I’m okay with that.😊❤️

So, yay, I’m once again off my tether. Didn’t have to have IV fluids after all but I will have to be VERY mindful of my water intake for the next two or three days. My chemo drug paperwork says that a person should consume AT LEAST 2-3 quarts of water per day both during and just after the chemo treatment so I’m going to be firmly attached to my Brita pitcher. Bluuuurrrgh… I hate forced drinking, but I understand the necessity.

My numbers are beginning to drop! Not dramatically, but there is a noticeable daily change. We’ll see how long this takes. I have hopes of going home in another week but that may be a bit optimistic. And still we wait… *Sigh*