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Returning Strength: Big C buckling. My Occupy Fred Movement

March 4, 2012

I must be slowly occupying and filling myself up with my life because the chemo isn;t moving fast enough. I watch the trip and want it to speed up. It’s not hitting me as hard because the cancer is 70 percent gone by now, so that means there’s 70 percent more Fred filling in all the cracks that cancer put in my foundation. I’m sitting in the Stanford Cancer Center’s Infusion Center surrounded by pictures and have my headphones on and listen to music or watch a move. I watched Chekov’s “A Cherry Orchard”–he wrote beautiful plays and stories about the Russians in the 19th century, a country doctor who stayed low to the ground to capture their original pulse. I’d like to think that’s what this second bout of cancer will do for me and my writing. My chemo brain has a difficult time reading. My concentration veers away from the prose and I forget what I read–it’s a form of fast-acting Alzheimer’s (but temporary.) However, lately I’ve been able to read a chapter or too. Again, the 70 percent is kicking in, enabling me to crawl back to the shores of Fred. Cancer’s riptide losing its hold.

My red blood cell count is low, so I get tired. But my white blood cell count is 16 times its normal level, something like 65 when the normal level is 4. I’m free of the urine bags but still have plugs in my back just in case. I get a little sleepy when the Cesplatnim drips in me, but I refuse to lean the recliner back. I will not lie down for cancer. If I nod out, I’m sitting up and letting The Big C know I’m making a stand–you shall not pass.The oncology nurses enjoy seeing all the pictures and are making sure I get a window seat. I get in and sit in the waiting room and they are glad to see me. There are people with lymphoma and waiting for bone marrow transplants and they wear masks to prevent any infection. I’m humbled by their endurance. And I am overpowered by the feeling of how can I leave here and heal others and myself.

I have to Occupy Fred with the souls and hearts of others because that’s what got me through this so far. The flower turns to the light not the cynicism of the shade.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Linda Walton permalink
    March 5, 2012 7:15 am

    I love you Fred. Laurie, too.
    I look forward to reading your thoughts each day.
    See you soon,

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