Seventh chemo: my dad is the patient this time

Illustrators can make even chemo look good: Using gold nanoparticles, Rice University chemists have created tiny spheres that literally bristle with molecules of the anti-cancer drug Taxol. Credit: Eugene Zubarev/Rice University

Illustrators can make even chemo look good: Using gold nanoparticles, Rice University chemists have created tiny spheres that literally bristle with molecules of the anti-cancer drug Taxol. Credit: Eugene Zubarev/Rice University

I have been fairly absent from my little blog lately—thinking, dwelling, dealing, bargaining, spinning—none of it too productive.The seventh chemotherapy, of my beloved paclitaxel, came and went with the same old complaints of bone pain, tingling fingers and toes now, nails getting yucky underneath, oily-tasting food (the post about my tongue no longer being coated in Vaseline was jumping the gun, or I didn’t knock enough wood, pr something, because everything is back to tasting like oil, or fire or acid, or all three in the worst cases.

I worked in my biweekly pizza lunch volunteer gig at Luka’s school, some little grade-parent duties, bowling night for Graydon (we make it a family affair), appointments for Graydon, and got my big sleeps in before Luka and I went to London to be with my dad immediately following a big surgery: a below-the-knee amputation. I am a firm believer and practiser of having an advocate/companion at the side of the sick person in the hospital. That person has to be ready to be a personal support worker, gofer, quality control supervisor, record keeper, social convenor, you name it. Luka and I stayed in London two nights, staying at the hospital over three days (only three hours on the day of the operation), and brought my homemade almond roca in boxes so that four different shifts of nursing staff got the goodies—everyone likes a treat during their workday, and nurses moreso than many workers because their compassion is tested every minute. My dad’s nurses were excellent and super-super smart, assessing my dad’s pain, which was considerable and complex, and calling his team for different meds. That’s a team approach!

Dad came through his surgery with flying colours and is now back in Stratford, and I’m planning to get down there again as soon as possible.

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2 Responses

  1. Ohhh dear I missed this post until today 😦 Your Dad is one of my favourite people and it saddens me that he’s lost part of his leg, but I’m happy to hear that he’s come through with flying colours and is home again. Please give him a really big hug for me when you see him, well and your Mom too. ❤
    I wish I could be that support person for your surgery and if I lived closer (or had holiday time off work & cash…) you bet I'd be there for you if you needed. Sending love ❤

    • I love the red hearts you put in your comments, and the faces. I know, Dad did very well for the surgery part, but now the phantom pains are really bothering him, and it’s difficult to get pain meds that work without making him loopy. This weekend I’m in hospital with Graydon (still am) so hugs for Dad will maybe be next weekend…

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