Life is a journey… | the ramblings and writings of a guy who prefers to write on paper, but can't live without the internet…

Day 15 – Finally Home

Yesterday came with some excellent news, my white blood cell counts were normal after the procedure to place a drain in the abscess that was discovered, they approved my discharge from the hospital, and to celebrate it all I was able to find a .gif of Frankenfurter saying, “I’m going home”! Ok, so the highlight was leaving the hospital and being driven through my favorite city in the world and experiencing it for the first time in weeks, then sleeping in my own bed again! There was a full night of cuddles too, which was sorely missed since I was admitted.

I can’t wait until we get our new bed though. The air mattress is better for me than our futon (it’s softer and easier on my sore back but also higher), but it’s still not a customizable bed with the base that allows you to raise your head or legs independently. That’s gonna make sleeping SO much easier until I’m healed enough to lay on both sides!

In the coming week, I have appointments with my surgeon, my ostomy nurse, and an introductory first visit with the oncologist who has been reviewing my case. Hopefully, during that appointment, we will get some good information about the expected treatment plan. Step 1 in my plan was the ostomy surgery because the tumor is preventing me from passing stool through the lowest part of my colon. This step is complete when I have healed from the surgery. Step 2 is treating the cancer itself through a combination of radio/chemo therapies. The idea is that this will shrink the main tumor enough to allow it to be surgically removed while also shrinking/removing the areas where the cancer has spread. Step 3 will be surgically removing the main tumor and theoretically reattaching my large intestine to remove the colostomy. That leaves Step 4, which is a celebratory Fuck Cancer Walk/Run where we can all celebrate that I kicked cancers ass!

I’m in great spirits right now, but have already had some emotional hurdles in the past 2 weeks.  My friends, you are one of the most important parts of this journey for me. Every time I start to feel the strings of depression, fear, doubt, pulling me down, I simply remember that you are all holding me in the light and lifting me up. I just relax into that support, lean back and rest upon your love and energy until I feel strong enough to raise back up on my own again. This past week alone, Sheifali reminded me that I am courageous because courage is not the lack of fear, but action in the face of fear. As iron sharpens iron, I have also been sharpened by my dear friend Mark during the darkest fear I have experienced so far.

I am doing everything within my power to stay one day at a time, moment to moment. I’m not looking forward more than just completing each step of the plan and so far, I feel that I have done a very good job at this. Time moves slowly this way, however. When you live in the moment, it seems like the moment stretches on towards eternity, one string of experiences and minutes one after the other into infinity. I am thankful for my study of buddhism, my practice understanding where my own center is. Without them, I fear I may have been completely incapable of dealing with this.

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There are 3 Comments to "Day 15 – Finally Home"

  • Josh Bruck says:

    Andy my friend,

    If I have met anyone that can stand up to this fight it’s you. Your optimism and determination are characteristics that define you. I’m happy to hear you are getting home in this stage and confident that you will kick ass though this process. Thinking about you on the daily and look forward to seeing you beat this.

    Josh

  • Donna says:

    Andy,
    We are so happy you are home! Yes take 1 day at a time. Don’t regret the past, don’t fear the future , live in today. It’s sometime hard to do for me but it really does help. One step at a time. I am so glad that Mike was able to be there with you last week. In the future I will come too! You have so many people who love & care about you & we’re cheering you on! ❤️ You!

  • Brenda Tolliver says:

    You are doing great Andy. Taking one step at a time is the only way you can beat cancer. I know. Being home helps the roller coaster on which you are traveling. Friends and family truly help. Keep meditating. Mom2

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