Thursday, October 28, 2010

Good counts, good sandwich, good travels

My clinic visit yesterday went well. My next appointment is in three weeks.

The kidney doctor said I was doing fine and that he was "releasing" me. I don't have to go back unless I need him. Then I saw Melissa, who said my counts were good, although my liver numbers were elevated, not too much but suggestive of GVHD. Dr. Humphreys (the kidney doctor) pointed that out too.

Melissa said that meant I couldn't decrease the Prednisone at this time. They will recheck in three weeks, and if it isn't better, then I might have to increase the Prednisone again. Sigh.

Somehow this is connected to my lower platelet count. It was 64 after being in the 90s the past few weeks. (Normal is 155-410.)

My hematocrit went up a bit, to 29.3 (normal is 34.8-43.6). I'm still pretty anemic, but up is good. My white count was 7.3 (normal is 3.8-9.2).

I have been off the high blood pressure pill Lisinopril for a couple of weeks. It was a suspect in my crazy nighttime coughing, and sure enough, the coughing has mostly stopped. In the meantime, although my left fractured ribs finally healed, my right ribs now hurt a lot, to the point where I have trouble turning over. Melissa said I probably pulled some muscles when coughing.

I like to add some "fun" things to these visits. I headed east on Tuesday and stopped at Brandeis to see Katie for about an hour. It was a warm, glorious day. I got a coffee and she got a hot chocolate and we sat outside. She is having a wonderful time, and it was wonderful to see her.

From there I went to my friend Margaret's house in nearby Needham. Margaret made a nice dinner, and it was good to spend some time with her. I slept over, heading into Boston the next morning.

My appointments were at 12:30 and 1:30. My plan was to hopefully get out of there in time to get to Enfield for my 5:30 practice with George. Things were falling into place with plenty of time to spare, but I unfortunately could not shake off my craving for a Reuben, which for some reason often hits me after a good clinic visit.

I got myself to nearby Brookline, heading for Coolidge Corner, near where I lived back in graduate school. Leave it to me to pass the restaurant, Zaftigs, that has the good Reubens. (Yes, New York skeptics, you can get a decent Reuben in Boston.) Poor Diane had to put up with a cell phone call where I said something like this, spoken rapidly as though it was one long word: "I can't talk so don't ask me any questions but I'm in traffic and I think I might have passed Zaftigs so where is it thank you."

Turns out I had just passed it. Diane calmly told me to turn around and to look for certain stores which were just ahead. I found the restaurant and by that time had to get the sandwich to go (along with crispy French fries). They only served Pepsi, so then I needed to make another stop to get a Coke.

The sandwich was delicious, but probably not the best thing to have before running around on a tennis court. In any case, I got to tennis just in time and had a lot of fun. I was almost on a par with the other women there, but not quite, because my ability to run is still limited.

Afterwards I went out for a drink and a shared salad and pizza with my tennis friend Barbara, who I hadn't seen for a long time. We left the restaurant around 9; Barbara had me call her when I got home. The half-hour drive was fine, and although I was tired after the long day, I felt good.

Maddie has been at her second home with our friends Jim and Jane since Tuesday morning, so I didn't have to walk her. She's staying with them through Sunday because I'm leaving tomorrow for one more Wellfleet weekend.

The weather will be cool, but the forecast is for sun. I'll go to sleep tonight thinking of crystal clear ponds, long stretches of beach and tall grass waving in the wind on the marshes.

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