Round 5, Day 29 & 30

Day 29:

6:30AM:  Wake up with Ryan, cut up some cantelope and sit on the couch and watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  John & I take turns getting ready and soon after leave to drop Ryan off at John’s parents house.

8:15AM:  Get to the Dr’s office.  They poke my arm for a tube of blood instead of pricking my finger since their machine is still not working properly.  Wait a while then talk to an RN, my counts are sort of low, but not low enough to get out of treatment so on with the lumbar puncture.

9:30AM:  We weren’t scheduled to meet with Dr. Ellis but he wanted to see me and we ended up talking to him for about 30 minutes.  10 of which was about baseball, he’s a Cards fan.  We went through all of my meds which was something I had been wanting to discuss since it seems like he tells me to go and off stuff so often I’m not sure I’m ever really taking what I’m supposed to.   We got it our plan in place and it involves approx. 10 or so pills a day.  I reviewed my orders for the day and was sent over to 5W. Checking out was a process.  They didn’t have my orders to go to outpatient every day this week for chemo and the lady was treating me like an idiot when I told her that was the plan.  The conversation went something like this:

  • Receptionist:  No, you’re not going to outpatient this week.  Who told you this??
  • Me:  Um… Dr. Ellis, I just talked to him 5 minutes ago.
  • Receptionist:  No, it’s not in my computer, you’re just supposed to come back until Friday.
  • Me:  Well, we just talked about it and I’m pretty sure I’m not going crazy.  Do you think it just hasn’t been updated yet?
  • Receptionist:  No, I’ll just call the nurse and see what she says.   Calls Nurse.  Gives more funny looks and then hands me the phone.
  • Nurse on Phone:  Hun, you’re supposed to go over to 5W now and then you’ll stay in the hospital for 4 days and then you’ll come back here on Friday.
  • Me:  No, I am going home tonight.  He wrote the orders for observation so as long as I feel well after everything today I can go home and then I will go into outpatient for chemo Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
  • Nurse on Phone:  Ok, well, I guess then let me talk to the receptionist.
  • Receptionist:  After hanging up phone.  Ok, I guess I’ll get those orders… what time do you want to go tomorrow?

10:00AM:  Over at 5W in the hospital they didn’t have a bed ready for me yet so they told us to come back in a half an hour.

10:15AM:  I can’t eat or drink anything all day until after the lumbar puncture but we drive through McDonalds for John.  Then we go to the mall.  I needed to take back a pair of clearance shoes I had got from Penney’s.  They were $10.  I was stoked with my awesome find!  When I got them home I figured out that one was a 10.5 and one was an 8 and both were right shoes.  Awesome, just my luck.  At least we were productive while I was waiting for a bed.

10:45AM:  Back at the hospital.  No bed.  We wait in the “library” on the floor and watch Ellen.

12:15PM:  Get into a room and get my fabulous nurse Tira.  I trust her 100% to do what she can to make sure everything goes so smooth, she’s a lifesaver.  She gets one bag of chemo going before I have to go down for a lumbar puncture.

2:00PM:  Go down for the lumbar puncture.  Since the versed/morphine combo doesn’t work 100% in knocking me out, I had asked Dr. Ellis for a valium too.  He said “What am I, Dr. Feelgood?….   Ok fine, you can have it.  One big, fat valium coming up”.   I can remember parts of the lumbar puncture, like asking to watch the screen during the procedure and asking to see the needle when they were done.  I must have been asking the doctor a lot of questions about what he was doing because I remember asking him if he wanted me to be quiet, if he was trying to concentrate and I was disturbing him (he said no, I was fine).  I told Bill (he’s the guy in radiology who is always in the room with me during these) that I would nominate him for the outstanding worker thing they have for the hospital and he told me I would not, that I was too drugged to remember.  I mailed that today so if you ever read this, no Bill, I wasn’t 🙂

3:00PM:  Back up to the room.  John had an iced coffee and chocolate muffin waiting for me.  I can finally eat so I’m happy.  Although I have to eat laying down since I have to be flat for an hour.  I had muffin crumbs all over the bed.

3:30’ish:  Tira comes in and starts my last bag of chemo and we finish everything up and I’m outta there by like 4:45.  Before we go, she asks if I have everything set up for outpatient today.  I said, well, they were supposed to get that set up and I’m supposed to go in around 10.  She called outpatient and of course they didn’t have the orders so Tira took care of it and told me they need me to go in around 2 instead.  Love that girl.

Since I was still drugged up and feeling good I decided I wanted to go somewhere to eat instead of just going home.  It’s not often we get a chance to go out to eat without Ryan so we went to Chili’s.  Ryan was spending the night with Jim & Maureen so when we finished dinner we went to their house to see him for a while.

When we got home around 7 I crashed out on the couch.  We tried to go to bed fairly early and I sleep pretty decent last night.

Day 30:

What I was scared of was today, when all the drugs would be out of my system and I would know for sure if I had the dreaded headaches that can come along with the lumbar punctures.  I woke up feeling pretty good, but still make a conscience effort to take it really easy and spend lots of time laying down.  My back never hurts from where the needle goes in, but my whole back just feels…weird.  I’m sure it’s in my head.  Regardless I camped out in bed all morning with a cup of coffee and laptop.  Got the H.O.P.E. website updated, sent some emails, caught up on blogs I like to read and watched part of a movie.

Right now I’m in outpatient finishing up my daily dose of chemo, this one takes an hour to do, which means it’s a couple hours here by the time I get my pre-meds and what-not.  Good thing I love Stephen my outpatient nurse..

He’s also my Words with Friends buddy even though he beats me most games.   Stephen is my Tira of outpatient.


7 thoughts on “Round 5, Day 29 & 30

  1. Laura, I love your writing…it takes me right to where you are! As a retired nurse, I completely understand the “conversations” you describe. Glad you are doing well and praying always for your continued healing. Blessings to you and your family!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  2. I second my sister’s comment. It’s so great hearing that there are wonderful people looking after you when you are at the hospital. Thank you, Stephen!

  3. Well I laughed all through that one. 🙂 I’m with the rest, I’m happy to hear you have good ones watching over you. Do we need to mail in some letters too? 😉

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