Wednesday, March 23, 2011

This Ain't L-Town (by Susan)

George and I have been spending our days at the Colorado Blood Center Institute, which is in downtown Denver. I lived on Capitol Hill when I first moved to Denver, and lived in Denver and Aurora for many years before moving to Louisville in Boulder County.  Now when I spend any time in Denver, I feel like someone from the boonies - complaining about traffic, the one-way streets, crazy driving, etc., etc., etc.  We have been getting breaks in our long days, and I have taken some walks around City Park, which is just a few blocks away.   There are homeless people who hang out there, which you never see  in Louisville.  There is definitely a different vibe in the restaurants and cafes - just many more different kinds of people than just your nice suburban working out and biking crowd that we always see around our house.  I am enjoying it, but I still don't think I would go walking in City Park after dark by myself. 

George is doing great with his chemo so far.  After day three, he has experienced very little nausea, perhaps due to the large doses of anti-nausea drugs he is getting every day.  One of the anti-nausea drugs is a steroid, so this makes him a bit hyper.  We come home and George is raring to go and I am the one who is collapsing on the couch.    I was feeling so exhausted on Monday and Tuesday nights, but finally today I perked up a little and I think it was because I had a visit from my good friend Kris and we took a walk arount the park together, and also had some great, supportive phone conversations with my sister Celia and also our son Ross, who is sending good wishes from the Netherlands. 

I attended a Caregiver Support Group meeting at Presby St. Luke's yesterday, and it made me realize that even in something as grueling as the treatment we are going through, some people have it worse than we do.  I talked to a few women who are here from out of state, so they have to take up residence in a motel or apartment for three months while their husbands are getting bone marrow transplants.  Often there are other family members there as well, like in-laws, sisters, brothers, etc., and having these people in close quarters can contribute to family tensions.    I feel very lucky that we live so close to the blood cancer center in Denver, with all of the expertise they have to offer, and that we can drive home to our own house and just relax every night. 

George is achieving  new zen-like levels with his chemo as demonstrated by the following picture of him doing yoga while connected to the infusion pump:

That's a pretty good Warrior III - better than I can do under the best of circumstances!  This picture was taken when we were doing laps with the infusion pole because George was too antsy to sit in his chair any more.  They have a nice infusion room with multiple chairs in it that is nice and sunny.  However, we have been spending most of our time in a private room where they put the transplant patients. 

We still don't know what the verdict is on Socrates.  They are keeping him in the animal hospital another night and day, and tomorrow we should know whether he will have to go on insulin or not.   I am feeling very bad that I have no time to take care of my little friend right now.  We are hoping that the new food will help enough so that we can get him home this weekend, but if he needs insulin then we may have to keep him in the animal hospital through the transplant process while George's counts are really low. 

Tomorrow is another long day at the infusion center.  As George said, we're beginning to feel like we work there!

1 comment: