This one is for you Alex. A love song even more comically stalky than Sting’s “Every Breath you Take”.
Don’t know why I find this song fitting for this post but I do. Hope you guys can enjoy the random tunes that are showing up on the blog.
I had been looking forward to being through with all the chemo and radiation and am glad it’s all complete now. However I’ll miss the great radiation techs that I’ve seen the last M-F’s for the last six weeks. They were so fast and efficient at their jobs due to how many patients they have to treat, but that didn’t keep them from being such kind and supportive folks. I’ll miss seeing them, but I’m glad to be done.
Having sat in the waiting room all those days for radiation, I met a few people who seemed outwardly positive about their treatment, but most needing treatment were old, had a hard time moving, and a lot seemed to a hard time even talking…it was just super rough for them. One of my favorite patients who I would see sometimes before or after my appointment was an elderly man who couldn’t talk but would do a hand motion over his head showing that he really liked my mohawk as he walked past me. I always felt better after seeing him. He did that hand motion everytime I saw him. The last time I saw him we both gave each other a firm hand shake and a pat on the back.
In the Davis Center they made a bell out of a scuba tank, which each patient who finished up treatment goes out and bangs. The sonic quality of it isn’t something that would put you to sleep at night, but it’s loud enough that everyone in the waiting room of the first floor can hear it. Some days when you hear a bang people give an applause. There was one day were there was so much banging and applause, I swore it must have been a small kid having a great time getting rid of energy and being praised for it.
So after hitting the bell we headed home. Originally we were thinking about a trip to Costa Rica soon after all this ended, but the feelings of sickness got us to change our minds. We’ve still got some travel plans but I need to glide through the post chemo/radiation sickness first.
One thing about the brain surgery I had, was that they had to cut one of my jaw muscles to get in there. The way it’s healed back, I am unable to open my mouth as wide as the normal person. They did the measurements and technically I have a reduction in my mouth opening by 50%. I finally got to meet with my surgeon this past week, and he gave approval for me to start on physical therapy, lifting again, and other physical activities. Apparently my jaw muscle was so ripped I probably had a stronger one than Arnold. He asked how my muscle was so strong, and I told him that unfortunately the stress makes the most inconvenient muscle in my body get super strong. Too much teeth grinding and clinching.
I get to start my physical therapy sessions soon which will involved someone sticking their fingers all up in my mouth and causing me to take those pain killers. For now I’ve been instructed to do some stretching exercises using tongue depressors. Every two days I add another tongue depressor to increase the stretch.
The biggest disadvantage of all this is I haven’t been able to eat any subs or larger sandwiches in the past couple months. Eating a sub is now the highlight of this work for me. Jimmy Johns, I’ll be visiting you soon.
Here’s an old school tune to help with the jaw stretchin’: Whodini – Big Mouth
The song below is taken from a long comp (120 songs) which some electronic musicians donated their tracks to so that sales would go to Macmillan Cancer Support. I’ve found this album to be a good one to listen to when it’s hard to fall asleep at night.
Next week is my last week of chemo and radiation. I’ve been looking forward to this treatment being over, but now I’m having second thoughts about that. Right now while there are various reasons why going through chemo/radiation treatment sucks, at least I feel that something is actively attacking the cancer that wants to grow in my head. There is some security in the treatment I didn’t really recognize I was relying on until today.
Once the treatment stops, I feel like the personal treatment becomes about trying to stay as positive as possible and not imagining the cancer continuing to grow in my head. From what the docs say I think I’m supposed to understand and plan out that it’s only a matter of time, but I don’t know how healthy it is to think that way. There are some things I have to plan out and get finalized in legal docs and the like regarding my healthcare and how my physical material is distributed, but besides that I’d really like to find a way to not focus on the fact that the docs have said that this cancer is terminal and will eventually kill me.
One medical treatment that I will be going through the rest of my life is taking chemo meds for a week each month to help slow the growth of the tumor. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to rely on that treatment as a foundation for continued fighting.
Most of you know that each month I try and put together a mix of tracks for friends and family. I try not to send out my mixes to folks who probably wouldn’t enjoy the selections. While not everyone will enjoy these mixes, I thought I’d go ahead and post them up just in case it’s something you might end up liking.
This month’s mix has more of a punk/alternative theme to it.
- Radioactivity – Sickness
- Champ – Burnt Alive
- Shine 2009 – Older
- Nisho – Over De Trees (Arovane Remix)
- Title Fight – Murder Your Memory
- Nothing – Somersault
- The Holydrug Couple – If I Could Find You (Eternity)
- Emil Rottmayer – Emil’s Theme
- SelloRekt/LA Dreams – Drop Top
- Citizen – Heaviside
- Nothing – B&E
Alex connected with family to have everyone come out to our place to watch the latest Godzilla flick in support of this fight again brain cancer (why Godzilla?). A lot of work was put into getting the party arranged, which made it easy for me to socialize and see everyone without having to worry about setup. I felt much love and support in both the setup of the party and the party itself. The party started off with some great food and MarioKart, and then quickly went over to watching Godzilla. Everyone at the party brought a large dose of positivity, which still has me feeling great.
First some appropriate music to accompany this post. Some uplifting shoegazin’ metal.
Well I started losing some hair in my Mohawk, so I had to make some style modifications. I now have a bar towards the back of my head and a gap in the front. I’m being stubborn about this hair cut. I’ve noticed that I’m losing more and more hair as the days go by recently, but I’m going to keep as much of this going as possible until the last hair falls out. Theeennnn the fake hair may or may not be deployed. ^_^
It looks like I have a docking station for a space craft on the front of my head now ^_^
I started using a lint roller to keep track of how much hair I was losing at any given time. I compare the sheets each day to check on the rate of lose. I like doing this activity in front of Alex since it looks so silly.
A few months ago I put this track by Lower Dens on one of my monthly mixes. It really hit home with me because I was worried about a health incident that Alex had that took us to the emergency room that seemed very serious. Thankfully Alex was deemed a-ok after getting some scans done by the docs. Now when I hear this song though I feel like I’m on the other side of the table, and this song is for Alex.
So Alex, my heart is still beating here and I am looking forward to spending another day with the bestest wife in the whole world!
Even before I found out I had cancer I was always confused by hearing that people were “fighting” their cancer. To me it really just seemed to come down to whatever the docs were doing to the patient that was actually doing the real fighting. I also felt like if someone was observed as fighting against cancer, and ended up dying there was this idea that they somehow didn’t fight hard enough. And what about the people that might have had it so bad that they just didn’t feel like it was worth it to “fight” against what might have seemed like the inevitable? Were those people looked down on by their family, friends, and other people who were fighting cancer? So I guess I never really liked the idea that someone was fighting the cancer directly.
Once I found out that I had cancer, I felt like I could choose two paths. One that threw my hands up in the air, got severely depressed, and gave up with life, and the other where I tried to max out each day I had left to live. I think the fighting that cancer patients like myself are really doing are fighting against the depression, pessimism, hopelessness, and various other downers that can be caused by cancer. I’d like to think that cancer patients who are fighting against the negative emotions do help increase their odds for a longer life. But for those who have so much pain, or so little hope I don’t think that makes them any less a fighter than anyone else. They are just as in need and worthy of family and friend support as a patient who is more vocal about fighting against their cancer.
You probably all know that I’m a big synthwave fan. The last two yearly mixes I’ve put together have been solely in that genre. One of the most prolific artists in the genre came out with a good track recently that I’ve been enjoying quite a bit. This is good for 80’s aerobic workouts if that’s your thing.