Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I made up for my transfusion-free clinic visit last week with a transfusion-full day this week. What's the equivalent of an all-nighter? An all-dayer? Well, that's what I had.

My hematocrit was 21, platelets 16 and white count 5.5 (normal). Melissa said not to worry about it because I had gone three weeks without a transfusion and that was pretty good. Meanwhile, she said, I was due for a bone marrow biopsy, one of my least favorite things. She emphasized that they did not expect to find anything. The last one was nine months ago, and it's just time for another. Waiting for test results is difficult, as I'm sure many people know. I am doing all that you're supposed to do, which is to keep busy, take care of yourself and refocus if you start to wonder "what if...." Still, it hovers.

Anyway, I got two bags of blood and a bag of platelets, and then Melissa did the bone marrow biopsy. It hurts, but after so many, you kind of get used to it. Also, it's short, about 15 minutes.

Katie was with me, and I felt bad that the day was so long, but she was a good sport. It was a beautiful day in Boston. She is learning the trolley system, so she took off for a while and went to Quincy Market for lunch. She also got a lot of reading done.

After getting to the clinic at 10 a.m., we left about 7 p.m., arriving home around 9. For part of the way back, it rained so hard I could barely see. Maddie had been home alone for way longer than we expected. We felt terrible about this. She hadn't left a mess – good dog! I took her out in the rain right away, and she was so anxious to get inside for some food that she jumped over the low stone wall along our driveway...and dragged me over the wall and onto the lawn, my umbrella landing on my head. As for the dog, I let the leash go, and she just stood there and looked at me curiously. Where's Lassie when you need help? Lassie would have gone to the door and gotten Katie's attention so she could help me get up.

I did manage to get up, blood dripping from my left shin. I had a long scrape, and part of it was a little gouged from the wall. I cleaned it up with water and a paper towel, got ice and put my leg up on a chair while nurse Katie ran upstairs and got alcohol, bandaids, cotton balls and bacitracin. She put up with my shouting when I put the alcohol on, then helped me apply three big bandaids.

Now it was about 9:30. Katie had eaten while I was finishing up with my blood, but I still hadn't eaten. She warmed up a plate of leftovers and put on the table so I could eat with my leg still on the chair. She was so sweet.

Silver lining to a long day of being poked, prodded and dragged by a dog: A child who takes care of you in just the right way,


Ann said...

Ouch! One day, those "all-dayers" will be a thing of the past.

Daria said...

That was a long day ... yuk.

Hope your shin is OK.

Susan C said...

Double ouch!

Susan C said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Nelle said...

This certainly was a long day. Glad you had Katie there to help you with the cut. Hope you can spend the next few days relaxing.

Howard said...

Sorry to hear about the long day and mishap. You still write about it all in a way that shows it won't break your stride (I mean your general stride).

Clear sailing ahead.....

Jaclyn said...

I've been reading your blog and I am touched by your humor and positive attitude when dealing with such a horrible disease. Last year my best friend was diagnosed with cancer and, like you, she started a blog that ended up inspiring her friends and family as much as it helped her. Her story didn't end as well as I'm sure your will, but her blog is still up at and she inspired a new website at Human Tribe Project is a free website that allows friends and family to unite, show support and raise money for a loved on facing a health-crisis. It's a great way for your friends to be able to show you their love and support.