The Cancer Diaries, Part 26

Cancer changes everything — and nothing at all. Rabbi Skillman That’s a profound comment, coming from a TV character. The “rabbi” in question is a fictional patient in hospital, played by George Wyner in the TV series, New Amsterdam (Season 1 Episode 8). He is talking to the hospital’s medical director, Dr. Max Goodwin (played by Ryan Eggold).  Cancer — its diagnosis, treatment, and … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 22

Three days off over Xmas from the daily drive felt like a longer holiday, although it wasn’t enough time for my bowels to heal properly. So far an irritable bowel, reduced urine stream, and my hot “flashes” (or surges) are the only side effects I’ve noticed. They are, however, enough to make me less than comfortable at times. I was warned I might feel … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 21

Hot flashes are becoming more frequent, but I was warned they would be thus in the latter part of the treatment. I’m about halfway through the first stage of the hormone therapy process. My next hormone treatment (Lupron shot) will be given in about six weeks, shortly after my next blood test. I won’t know if I need more treatment (like chemotherapy or more … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 20

A weekend off from the long, daily drive and the treatment certainly seems like a treat these days. On weekends, I get to have an easy morning, leisurely cups of tea, do some writing, play some computer games, take a long walk with Susan and Bella (weather permitting), then enjoy a quiet afternoon of reading, more tea, and maybe some online gaming with a … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 19

I was fortunate in being able to get my tooth fixed within 48 hours of losing a portion of it. I hadn’t expected to be able to see my dentist for at least a week, maybe even more, but there was an opening, a cancellation, and I grabbed it. I had a vision of having to spend a week or more eschewing tough or … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 18

Radiation treatment, 2nd session Same process as the first one, albeit a little shorter time to get ready since I already knew what was expected of me, and what items to disrobe. No hiccups or delays. I lie down, get positioned by the therapists, then the bed moves back towards the machinery (the linear accelerator, or LINAC). Like some hulking scifi machinery, the arms … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 17

Well, it has begun. Today I drove to RVH for my first radiation treatment session, the third stage of my treatment. One hundred forty-one days since my prostate surgery, and roughly 290 since I was first advised of my dangerously elevated PSA level. This is the first of approximately seven weeks of sessions, one every weekday. I have to admit I was somewhat anxious … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 15

“… my only object was that all the world should enjoy itself and live in peace and quiet, without quarrels or troubles; but my good intentions were unavailing to save me from going where I never expect to come back from, with this weight of years upon me and a urinary ailment that never gives me a moment’s ease…” Miguel de Cervantes: Don Quixote … (more)

The Cancer Diaries, Part 13

It’s been an emotional, roller-coaster week for me (if you’ll pardon the cliché…). Back and forth to Barrie for consultations, scans, and tests, more blood work, phone consultations with doctors and hospital social services staff, schedules set, schedules changed, confusion over medication, appointments upset. All in all a rather trying time. Prior to my next stage of treatment — radiation — the oncologist told … (more)

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