The 7 habits of the highly infected calf

Greetings! I’m out of radiation therapy (for the moment), and I’m here to tell you that it SUCKS as bad as chemo. My doc hit that left lobe hard. Like so bad I ruined my own week-long vacay over it. Almost immediately after the procedure I started feeling not-so-good and the spot just below my sternum felt like it got set on fire. I thought I was managing it all right before I traveled to see family in Hilton Head last week, but it was quickly apparent I had no control over the pain and pressure I was enduring. I couldn’t really eat, I could hardly sleep. I spent pretty much all day last Monday in the ER (funny how I always seem to visit those places when I travel now) where I got nowhere except for getting a nice prescription for narcotics. Never was I so happy to return home from a week-long vacation at the beach. That’s messed up, yo.

So I was able to ‘turn the corner’ after being home over last weekend, thank goodness for Christine’s chicken noodle soup. I’m out of pain now, almost 3 weeks after the procedure, and can eat almost at full capacity once more. Which brings me to my next hurdle: increased food coming down the pipe means that tumor that is STILL in the colon, the one that started all of this, is doing a fair share of blocking outgoing waste. I swear if Virginia Tech’s offensive line could block this well, the pass protection alone would keep us in the Top 25 in the AP poll.

Today I had meetings with the doctor who did my theraspheres procedures as well as my oncologist, where I stated my desire to so SOMETHING about this tumor in the colon. Basically at this point there are 4 options:

  1. Hit it with more chemo. it responds well to this tactic but there’s the widespread destruction that chemo does to everything, not just that tumor; and it doesn’t eliminate the tumor in a short amount of time, it just shrinks it.
  2. Hit it with radiation. The main issue here is where the tumor is located, because if i’m going to get hit with localized radiation I want it to be pointed RIGHT AT the thing, and where the tumor is presents some potential movement within the colon to the point where it’s kind of a moving target, and I definitely don’t want to zap something I shouldn’t down there. Also unsure whether this would just shrink the tumor or get rid of it, not interested in just shrinking down at this point.
  3. Colostomy. Basically bisect the colon above the tumor and shunt it to a permanent colostomy bag, leaving the tumor and everything below it to be unattached. While not ever needing to use TP again is attractive, having no exit strategy for the tumor is not desired.
  4. Bisection and reattachment. My preferred treatment, it requires taking the entire tumor and just enough tissue so that they can reattach everything and make me whole again, cancer free (at least down there). There will probably be a lot of stress on the suture site, as my colon will want to move around against a fixed ending at the bottom (near the rectum) and could cause complications that may be in my best interest to not have to deal with.

My oncologist wants to get as much info in the form of another CT scan next week so he can present my case to his bullpen of doctors to see what they think is the best bet going forward. There’s no easy choices; I asked my oncologist straight up what he would do if it were him and he just stared at me, searching for his decision, for a good 20 seconds. (He hesitatingly chose #4 as well.)

We shall see what the next week holds, and what my next steps are going forward. I’ve been low energy lately but am finally finding my 2nd and 3rd gears easier now. God I need a vacation from all of this.

Every day I wake up we drink a lot of coffee and watch the CNN
Every day I wake up to a bowl of clover honey and let the locusts fly in.
Lobsterbacks attack the town again
Wrap all my things in aluminum
Beams of darkness streak across the sky
Pink rays from the ancient satellite

Every time I look out my window same three dogs looking back at me.
Every time I open my windows cranes fly in to terrorize me.
The power of the Holy Ghost
The power of the Holy Ghost

Shadow of the New Praetorian
Tipping cows in fields Elysian
Saturnalia for all you have
The seven habits of the highly infected calf

Swan diving off the tongues of crippled giants
International Business Machine
Choking on bits of barley bread crumbs
Oh this burning beard I have come undone.
It’s just as I’ve feared. I have, I have come undone.

Bugger dumb the last of academe.
Occam’s razor makes the cutting clean.
Shaven like a banker, lilac vegetal.
Break the glass ceiling and golden parachute on down.
The power of the Holy Ghost comes to town.

Shadow of the New Praetorian
Tipping cows in fields Elysian
Saturnalia for all you have
The seven habits of the highly infected calf.
The seven habits of the highly infected calf.