No Spring Chicken #18

It seems I fell off the update wagon once the treatments for my lymphoma were done in 2011. But I thought these two items were worth an update. The first was posted on Facebook at the time, and I'll do the same with the second one soon. For those who didn't get all of them, the Spring Chicken letters are on my website:

Those who came to the afterglow after our show on the 9th will remember that during Agate Passage's performance I took a fall as part of one of the songs ("Restroom Door"). You may even remember that we had a public service announcement before that song stating "No singers were injured in the performance of this song." Those who have seen me since then will know that was a lie. I've done that pratfall 30-40 times in practice and performed it in public a few times, too, with no problem. But that night I did something wrong and my shoulder is killing me. No broken bones, and I have plenty of range of motion, so it is just strains and sprains, but it still limits me quite a bit. To add to the trouble, the hot tub is broken and the extra tight muscles caused by compensating for the bum shoulder get no soaking! So, perhaps 64 is a bit old to be taking pratfalls. We've changed the choreography so I don't take a fall anymore.

Today, Janet did a number on her leg. We were moving our sailboat (30') from one marina to another while they rebuild portions of our marina. When we arrived we were docking the boat, and Janet (who has balance issues anyway) slipped while jumping onto the dock from the boat. She took quite a tumble and just laid there while I stopped the boat, got off, checked to see if she was alive and not overly injured, tied up the boat and then began to look closely at her. She had a large bulge on her right leg that said, "Broken bone trying to push through the skin." to me. So I shut things down on the boat, locked it up, and helped her to the car (quite a ways). When we got in the car I drove like crazy to the local clinic to get help, but they couldn't see here - booked up completely that day. So we took off for Poullsbo's Urgent Care facility. They weren't a lot faster, but they did see her, and determined the bulge was a "haematoma", not a broken leg, and then handled the scraped leg (from mid-shin to mid-thigh) and told her the haematoma would hurt more later and the color would come to the surface in the next day or two, and the bulge might not totally go away for months, and her entire leg would be lots of pretty colors. So, after taking Janet back to where my car was (the old marina), I left her with her car to drive home. She determined that she'd rather drive it tonight than when it hurt more tomorrow. I got into my car and drove to the new marina and finished closing up the boat and shutting off the instruments that were draining the already low batteries. Opened the inside windows (those opening on the cockpit) and put up the boom cover (so rain couldn't come in those open windows). I cleaned up the deck, coiled up the dock lines, checked the electrical cable for connection (it didn't - I need a 30A to 50A connector) and coiled it, too, and put it in the cockpit. Then I traveled my weary way home, with a very sore shoulder. Throughout all of this I didn't have my sling on to support my bad shoulder, and had to use it to hold doors for Janet in a wheel chair, coiling lines and cables, moving heavy things I shouldn't have been moving with that arm, etc. So I'm a bit worse for wear. Janet is even worse for wear. But we are both home safe and sound. Needless to say, the next couple of days will be a bit strained! Literally and figuratively. ;-})

"They're Baaaaaack!" Remember in Poltergeist II when the little girl says that? Sometimes it is scarier than others. In my case the lumps (swollen lymph nodes) are back. I spotted several of various sizes (up to 1.8 cm) on my neck, and the Cat-scan showed one that is 2.8 cm x 3.7 cm in my abdomen, and another about 2.8 cm in my chest. The radiologist says, "...lumps consistent with recurrence of the follicular lymphoma." So we do a biopsy of one of them next week and are planning to begin chemo treatment on the 6th of October (after the T-37 RC Sailboats National Championship Regatta). I'm singing with the chorus in Surrey, BC the last weekend in September, then sailing in the regatta the next weekend (I worked committee boat last year, but want to race this year). I don't want to be dealing with chemo before either of those.

The good news about Follicular Lymphoma is that it is pretty innocuous and easily burned into remission with chemo. The bad news is that it is almost always coming back. They told me they expected 5-10 years recurrence, and it has been 3.5 years. So I guess I got shorted a bit there. On the flip side, I spotted the lumps before any other symptoms showed up both times. Hmm. Maybe I'm channeling Frank Bank!

The other good news is, of course, that it will be just as easy to get rid of this time as last time. So, 4-5 treatments. I should have it in remission, again, by Valentines Day.