Chemo Delayed

My counts are recovering more slowly this round. Apparently that’s what happens when they kick the crap out of you with R-HYPR-CVAD. Thanks for saving my life toxic chemicals, but can we please get this over with as quickly as possible. While I wish I was going in tonight to get this round done, I am so happy that I have a few more nights at home with Jacq, Sophia, and Otis feeling relatively strong and good.

I am slated to start chemo now on Thursday or Friday, which means I am probably having a chemo-tastic Super Bowl party in the hospital this Sunday night. Chemo + football = fun!

So bring the beer, chips, and nachos. I’ll supply hospital food.

Fun With Chemo Hair

On our flight back from Florida this morning, with my hair falling out by the minute at 41,000 feet, and with little Sophia’s face and clothes covered in it, I knew that it was time to shave the noggin. But before I shaved it completely off, I tried a few new looks…

“The Hole In The Head”

“The Angry Yarmulke”

“The Clubber Lang”

“The Sophia Head”

The Return of Bald Mike

Sophia Flys Again

With my counts finally out of the crapper, Jacqui, Sophia and I are making a quick trip to Florida to visit our families and spend some time with my dad who is still recovering from surgery last month. He continues to improve and Sophia has proven to be the best medicine for his recovery.

Chemo starts again on Monday or Tuesday. Welcome to the dreaded B cycle. Should be fun. I am stocking up on platelets and hemoglobin to get me through.

If anyone is A+ blood and you live in Philly, please think about donating. I recently purchased an antique “Do It Yourself” blood donation kit, rusty needles and all, and we can take care of the transaction in the comfort of your living room.

If you are not A+, please still think about donating. There is always a need for blood donors, especially for our soldiers in Iraq.

You Look Great… NOT!

Last night, while looking at photos from Sophia’s birth, Jacqui finally admitted to me how freaky and frightening I looked at the end of the last B-cycle. With barely any red blood cells and hemoglobin, down a few pounds, and exhausted and beat up from chemo, I knew I looked like Jeff Goldblum mid-transformation in The Fly.

Witness exhibit A:

I looked like a freak. Bald. Skinny. Pale. My nose looking bigger than ever. But my wife, who obviously loves me even in my Frankenstein stage, kept insisting that I looked OK. And so did many of you. Wow, denial is one powerful coping tool.

I beg you all, if the chemo should again transform me into a circus freak, PLEASE DO NOT tell me I look good. If I look like crap, it is part of the process. Chemo is not a day at the spa, and looking like shit is the norm. May I suggest the following approach: “Mike, holy crap do you look bad! Clearly the chemo is working!”

And now for a bonus shot of me reading to little Sophia.

Danger, Will Robinson, Danger! Platelets Are Low

My counts are recovering nicely today, save my platelets which were at 8000, a number low enough to activate my “platelets are low warning system” which caused my arms to wildly flail up and down in the air like the Robot from Lost in Space. After a fresh bag of platelets this afternoon, I am feeling good, ready to lead the Drexel School of Public Health team at tomorrow’s rugby match against those rubes from Penn. Thanks anonymous platelet donor from Cleveland, because of your help I still get to knock some skulls at tomorrow’s match.

The rest of this week will be easy, except for the fact that my hair has begun to fall out. I’ll probably shave it in a few days, making the metamorphosis back to bald Mike complete, at least until I am in my 70s and have a comb-over. See you in early April hair!

Sophia’s Super Poo

This photo was taken just moments before Sophia had the biggest poo of her young life all over grandma. Grandma was a great sport, laughing so hard on the way to hose herself down in the shower.

Meanwhile, as of yesterday, I was officially neutropenic with my counts down in the cellar. I had hoped to have rebounded for the weekend. Oh, well. Just means more snuggle time with my little super-pooper and lovely wife. Not bad considering.