Friday, April 8, 2011

Between Anderson Street and MGH

This past week the side effects of radiation started to set in, my red blood counts still didn't respond after chemotherapy and I had my quarterly infusion of zolmeda. These three elements combined made for a pretty painful week.

Radiation, though I may have mentioned is my treatment of choice, apparently has some wicked side effects when targeted at the cervical spine / neck area; I'm second guessing my treatment preferences. First and foremost, roughly after the 10th day of radiation a terrible sore throat sets in. For me this started about last Sunday and continued to escalate through the week. Think of a sore throat times a billion.

When I went for my regular Monday infusion my labs showed my blood counts to still be lower than we would have wanted so we continued with another modified dose of navolbine. The goal is to keep hitting this monster as hard as we can! It was decided because of my lowered blood counts and my decreased energy that I'd come in on Tuesday for a two unit blood transfusion which was generally uneventful despite living out my dreams as a vampire.

Wednesday was a bad day. I still had the neck and shoulder pains from before but now combined with a worsening sore throat and whatever vampire energy I was supposed to receive was late. Additionally the zolmeda infusion, the same medicine old ladies take to prevent from breaking their bones, leaves an achey flu-like feeling for a couple days. I could barely eat or swallow and spent the day on the couch trying to force feed anything down my throat. That night I ran a low grade fever and sweat through 4 layers of sheets! The next day I had scheduled appointments with all my doctors so I figured we'd sort it out in the morning.

On Thursday the doctor at my first appointment took one look at me and admitted me to the short stay infusion center for hydration and pain control. I was in pretty bad shape but they were able to pump me back up and release me to the care of Autumn and Benson by the end of the day. To be on the safe side we scheduled an appointment the next morning to receive more fluids.

And on Friday, still unable to talk or eat or swallow my well needed medicines, I was admitted back to my penthouse suite in the Phillips House. They actually put me in the same room I had last time!

Welcome to my life :). One day at a a time!


  1. with you you bud, Ill give you a call tomorrow.

  2. Jeff, what a miserable week you've had. I hope, hope, hope you feel better and get some relief. Thinking of you all the time.

  3. Bless you heart, Jeff. Praying for your continued strength to get through these rough spots.

  4. Feel better soon Jeff! We think of you often, and hope to see you and Autumn again soon! xox Your Sarasota Fan Club :)

  5. Hey man, thinking of you. Will see you Saturday morning!

  6. Hey Jeff,
    Thinking about you now and then and it always puts a smile on my face. Actually, when I leave a lunch on Wednesdays to work at Grey's school:) Keep up your humor and positive approach, it serves you and your loved ones well. You are a blessing.

    PS Lorio wants to write you - to which address should he send something?

  7. Sorry about the rough week. Thinking of you!!

  8. Shit. I'm sorry you had an especially bad week, Jeff. Hands clasped across the miles from my house to yours. Sending love as ever. XXXX

  9. Jeff, this is Clint David, Barton and Elliott's father. You probably don't remember me, but I remember you from when you guys were kids. I learned of your situation from Barton and have followed your blog ever since. I just can no longer sit idly by without telling you how unbelievably impressed I am with your fight, humor, intelligence and, most of all, incredible bravery while facing this truly cruel and insidious disease. While others (like me)would be very reluctant to share such intimate details of their struggle and hide in a pool of self pity, you are out front explaining, educating, and showing how a person can and should face their challenges: head on and fully informed. Man, all I can say is you are a man's man, and if I wore hats, I would tip mine to you. Keep up the fight and know there are many others out there like me who, although perhaps they don't post on your blog, look up to you with the greatest amount of respect and admiration. All my best, Clint