Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Deja Vu and Holiday Traditions

The MRI results were/weren't what we hoped for or expected. It was the first time there appeared to be a shift between two MRI's (without a surgery in between). Two of my doctors argued with each other for 45 minutes about whether there was a shift and that if there was one that it might be scar tissue or cancer growth. Rather than do another one in 3 months we're going to do one shortly after the new year plus another batch of neurological and neuropsychological tests with all of these medical procedures ranging from an hour to 8 hours. If the tests results go a particular way, we'll likely start radiation; if they go another way, we'll likely just monitor it with monthly MRI's for a while and if there is a shift perhaps do radiation then or just east up on monitoring it over time. The Decker Half Marathon is in a few days, there's some Christmas parties around the corner, I'm training for the Livestrong Marathon. Didn't we do all of this before?

Yes but the more things change, the more they stay the same. At some level we're in a similar place except then I was still trying to find doctors because I wanted to handpick them (for a bit this year it seeemed that I would have to find a new neuropsychologist because of a shift in health insurance but then it panned out). There's a girl sleeping next to me though she's 4 not 29 and she's sleeping unphased by it all and this time I am the one awake in the middle of the night. Though to my discredit, Kiana's mom sent some very long emails last year clearly worried and I responded with 2 or 3 line sentences to "ease her fears" though retrospect sure provides that she wasn't sleeping so calmly while I was trying to figure out the "logic" of curing cancer. Not sleeping as calmly this time through with dreams and nightmares taking over my brain that something else may be once again taking over my brain. I talked to Matt, the guy who I did the Hawktober event with, who for a few years now has had a similar "shadow" that they've never figured out what it is and with the "angel" who Livestrong connected me with who has a similar experience but hers ends up needing radiation. The coin tosses with cancer are...less than fun.

A year ago at this time, I was filling out a will for the first time and making sure all paperwork was in order with this life insurance and that health plan to make sure Kiana and her mother were adequately provided for; this year I'm updating it to leave it all to Kiana and to put an executor I trust if things go south. This time I get to drive myself to all of my appointments though perhaps unknowingly, having friends who were there last year, was more helpful than just for the driving.

Kiana said tonight "I still want you and mom together" and "we should do my birthday party at your house not mommy's." If you'd had me bet my life a year ago on that ever having to be mentioned, I would have done as I did, bet it the other way. Another cancer patient today asked how I dealt with my body and my wife all betraying me in such a close time. I am not sure I see it that way, betrayal is too heavy; it's just unhealthy things reproducing and getting in the way of healthy things.

Just sitting and waiting again...wondering whether or not we have to do treatment. I joked last year plenty that it's not the suspense that's killing me... With both the cancer and the divorce, there were people of faith in God and/or humanity willing to help but let's hope we end up better with the first than the second went.

Every year we were married, Kiana's mom and I hung up an ornament representing the most important event of the year. I intend to continue that at some level but I am unclear as to what that is. Is it Duke, single fatherhood, the Boston Marathon (entry recently confirmed)...

Robert Burns wrote that suspense is worse than disappointment. Perhaps it's nothing, just a shadow. Perhaps it's back and while we'll give it radiation, if it's back this fast that is a huge red flag with a possible 12-18 month prognosis with such a quick return. I don't know but if I'm going down, I am going down between hugs to my princess and while actively swinging.

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