Happy: A Quest for Life After Death

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

What else can I say? It stinks!

There's no funny way to say this: Torisel stinks.

This is the chemo drug Mat has been on since July 14. He gets an infusion of Torisel every Monday for three weeks, and then has a week off. The whole infusion process, which includes having blood drawn, getting lab results from the blood work, and meeting with either Dr. Dave or a nurse practitioner as well as the infusion, takes anywhere from three to six hours. It takes longer if Mat needs IV fluids to remedy dehydration.

But that's really the fun part of the week. Mat's infusion nurse is very funny and she almost always gets the needle in the first time. Mat is uncomfortable sitting in his infusion chair, but there's a TV, and volunteers bring snacks and lunch, and we hang out and watch Jerry Springer.

About midway through the infusion, Mat passes out from the Benadryl that goes with the chemo to prevent allergic reactions, and sleeps for most of the rest of the day. This is good, because it's hard to feel like throwing up when you're asleep.

The rest of the week involves a lot of sleep in between bouts of nausea, with an occasional outing to the park with the kids, to the dinner table, or for a walk around the block. Some days are definitely better than others. We went to a park and the mall last Friday, and we're going to try for a Red Sox game on Saturday (it's Mormon Day at Fenway Park!). Needless to say, Mat is on disability leave from work.

On the positive side, Mat is now down almost 20 pounds, so he doesn't have to worry about big hips! Wait ... I'm the one who worries about big hips. Mat, aka "stick insect," has never worried about big hips in his life.

As much as it sucks, I will never complain about Torisel again if -- scratch that -- when we find out that it works after Mat has his next scan. Some dates for the calendar: scan September 5, results September 8.

It's always good to have something to look forward to.

Update from last post: it was a case of shingles, and it cleared up with the help of Valtrex in a couple of weeks. And he got that thing out of his eye.

Hey, when you look at it that way -- everything's comin' up Milhouse!


ilana m said...

Hi Kimberly,

I'm Mat's intern from last summer, Ilana (we met at your house). Thank you for the update. I want to let you know that I was completely serious about babysitting since I live well within biking distance from your house. Please tell Mat that I miss him and that I'm still waiting for him to set me up with his other Jewish ex-intern.

Thanks, again, for your writing.

lifeinredshoes said...

I'm rooting for you.

EmilyCC said...

I love it to hear that everything is comin' up Milhouse! (I laughed out-loud when I read that)

SLP said...

Thanks for the update, we have missed hearing from you :)
Sending you EXII love your way...