I'm pleased to report that the MGH Onocology facilities encompass the advertised spa-like atmosphere (though i did have a little inside help with my expectations). The image above is the view out my penthouse suite window overlooking the Charles River. Additionally, today I got a reflexology foot massage from some nice lady and throughout the day I received visits from social workers, case managers and other supporting divisions to make my stay and my family's stay more comfortable. Everyone one here at MGH has been top notch and super helpful.
Chemotherapy, although failing my expectations as a Clockwork Orange nightmare, is definitely not a walk in the park. The nurses basically force feed poision into your body for 3-6 hours while you sit on a hospital bed slowly getting sicker and sicker. The regiment I'm on is called AIM (which is a combination of Adriamycin, Ifosfamide and Mesna). Adriamycin, commonly referred to as the "red devil," is so caustic to the skin that the nurses must wear long gowns and thick gloves; yet for some reason it's okay to be forced through my port. Ifosfamide is another weird drug that has been the bane of my existence here at MGH. The first night my Ifosfamide was delivered too fast and my doctor quoted me "talking ragtime." I was disoriented / confused, and had hallucinations, along with apparently saying weird things. Finally, Mesna is not a chemotherapy drug. Instead, Mesna is our friend and protects my bladder from developing inflammations from the poisons.
Chemotherapy has been a roller coaster. For a moment I feel fine and energetic, and then the next moment I feel completely powerless and zapped of all energy. I can feel the chemotherapy medicine attacking all the areas of my tumors. My back aches, my legs ache. I lie in bed helpless waiting for the medicine to finish attacking the foreign material. When it's all passed, I feel fine again and ready for the next obstacle. I guess that means it's working :)
Due to my talking ragtime on Day 1 and my low-grade fever Day 2, they're going to hold me overnight and discharge me tomorrow, even though i just finished receiving my third and final chemotherapy treatment for this cycle.
Round 1 is complete!