I’m posting my experiences going into cancer treatment for a few reasons. I enjoy writing. I also want people to understand the process. Many of us have friends or relatives in the same boat. It’s much more complex than I expected.
Lots of you have given me credit for being strong or having a positive attitude. Nah. This is just how it’s done. No ad libs by me.
I suspect there are people in my boat who are petrified and not getting proper treatment. Maybe it’s just diabetes or cancer by itself. There is no ‘just’ cancer.
This all seems scary. And it is. But there’s more scare than pain.
When my commenters says this shows some form of strength they are wrong. Nearly everyone is capable of what I’m doing. Saying otherwise doesn’t help those on-the-fence.
Seriously, so far everything has been annoying or uncomfortable, but no big deal. And I am a major pussy! Today, I let them put me under and stuff a camera carrying tube into my stomach. Not my first time to this rodeo. I knew it wouldn’t hurt.
When I woke up my first question was whether they did it? I felt nothing. Like I said, the prep was shitty — no fun. But it didn’t hurt. It didn’t. It was a pain, but anyone can do this.
Think of me on a conveyor belt driven by my HMO. Each step leads to the next. My doctors and their immense crews of nurses and assistants (my cardiologist is in a two doc practice with nine office staff alone!) are tracking and guiding me.
Specialists at this level of specialty are different than a primary care doc. This is what they deal with every day. And, they are communicating. So many of them individually, but they have to know each other’s business.
At this point I’m getting much more careful attention and individual care. I’ve been assigned a contact by each doctor, always a grown-up nurse who understands the business they’re in.
As they say, your individual results may very, but Hoag seems a very good hospital. You can tell by how its staffed and how many of the staff are long timers. I told my nurses how happy I was to be with adults. Experience counts.
The equipment looks new and very high tech–I’m a good judge of that. I was jealous of the monitors in today’s very specialized operatory, large and hi-res. Don’t think of it as operating room. It’s closer to a well equipped NASCAR garage. It is purpose built to do what it does.
As I said, so far so good. Bothersome, but not worse. That changes quickly on the next step. I’ve read enough about my Whipple procedure to stop reading about it. A Whipple veteran wrote to tell me it was called the Mount Everest of surgery. Yikes.
Am I willing to make the trade for what it brings? It seems a no-brainer, but I’m sure some people stop right here. I am a good candidate for a reasonably successful outcome.
There’s no time to be strong or have an attitude. You just do as you’re told (while making sure every step has makes sense in context).
You make a commitment and just wait for it to happen while you’re under. I’ll be fine when I go in. My understanding is recovery isn’t fun. I can do it. I’ve played with pain before, coach.
I really don’t know how much this is costing you. Yeah, You! Medicare. Thanks.
I heard the rack rate for a room is $7,500/day before extras. And everything is extra. Thank you.
I’ve been paying into Medicare since 1968. This is gonna be way more than I invested. Again, thank you. I am grateful to live in a place where we feel this way about each other.
My surgery is two weeks away. We’re doing this to balance competing meds. At the moment my calendar is empty until then.