Are you nervous about the future? Are you nervous about your health situation? Do the current times cause you to pause and reflect on your life in a meaningful way, with one or two teaspoons of smirking denial? Has the thought bubble appeared over your head recently with the caption; “It will never happen to me…there are so many others this will happen to before I ever get sick.”
Well, welcome to my Shit-Show!!!
The last thing I wish to convey is a whinny little bitchy boy attitude, I am grateful for being alive, grateful for having lived 64 (almost 65 Patrick, but not quite Old Timer!) years, grateful for having met the most wonderful woman on this planet and grateful for having answered correctly when she asked. “Well, when are you going to ask me to marry you?” Grateful for the 2 children she allowed me to watch her raise, (this paragraph went on for 9-15 more lines before I realized there was no way to cogently write the many aspects and recipients of the love I feel, so I will leave that to a later post)
We are 1 year into a 2-year average survival for my ‘undifferentiated, metastatic, soft tissue sarcoma’. With the time on my hands I’ve had over the past year, all the uncertainty, anxiety, and physical exhaustion has been my day in, day out. All that reflective time has generated a little smugness for me over everyone freaking about our current public health challenges. I want a bumper sticker printed with the title of this blog post, but, of course, Peggy clicks her tongue in a ‘tsk, tsk’ manner…and I move on.
If anything close to the above has run through your mind recently you probably were thinking about this guy…
Be careful though, your concerns may have only started. If you zoom in with an electron microscope you will notice certain tell-tale indicators of its origin. Take a closer look here:
You never want to believe the first presentation of authorities; they might sometimes use “alternative facts”.
What does any of the above have to do with my ‘undifferentiated, metastatic, soft tissue sarcoma’? Well, quite a lot it seems. Every day I get either an email or a text from Johns Hopkins Medicine urging me to report any changes in my health status. I understand and agree with the reasoning behind this vigilance. They, and I in my small part, need to keep the possibility of my being a vector of Covid-19 out of their facility. I get that, I do. They take my temperature, SpO2, NIBP, and ask all kinds of questions each time I am treated. If there is a virus cell on me, no doubt Professor Proton Beam has sent them to germ hell at the speed of a loose neutrino, 186,000 miles per second. Sound familiar? it should, it’s the speed of light.
Each day I look forward to, and have learned to live with my little gnomes, these loose neutrons, they whisper to me in the proton beam therapy center. Well, it’s more of a sign language with soft background humming. When I hear the soft murmuring of Professor Proton’s lecture, there is a light high on the wall in the room that is the visual indicator from the neutron detector that there are loose neutrons in the room. That is a cautionary warning to the healthcare providers. Flying neutrons are not conducive to long life of healthcare providers…hey, Wait a Minute!!!
The room is designed that there are no straight lines from the proton beam emitter to the outside corridor. Neutrons are not particularly smart; they travel only in straight lines. However, there is one feature they are known for that I am a little envious…they have almost no mass!
The tie-in for the vigilance from Hopkins vis-a-vie Covid-19 is a real bottom line for me. Essentially, my cancer treatment would most likely come to an end if I test positive & am sick from Covid-19. That was a real awakening for us both this morning, visitors to Casa Otey have been postponed indefinitely. The risk of infection is high enough with Peggy and the school, although she is working from home now also, FUN!!!
All these fucking bottom lines, it’s almost more than I can bear. Until I look over at Peggy, and it is not me that quickly dies a painful death…
the one who dies is ‘whinny little bitchy boy’.