My dog can't stop sniffing me. Clearly, I'm a changed person now that I have somebody else's blood coursing through my system. When I left the house Friday morning, I smelled like a 53 year old woman whose interests were yogurt, perfume and chemotherapy. When I came home, a new person walked in. Maybe I smelled like a 32 year old man, one who likes Monster Energy Drinks and weightlifting. Maybe I appeared as a 70 year old woman who secretly needs prunes to get things going. Maybe a poor person sold their blood, one who lives on cat food.
This new me seems to be mighty confusing to an already confused animal, and she can't stop trying to get a whiff and figure out what the heck happened.
With the loss of her companion last week, there have been lots of confusing changes in the poor dog's life.
As for me - you know how you don't know how bad you felt until you don't feel bad anymore? That's the state I'm in right now.
How could I have walked around feeling so terrible all of that time? How did I do it? How did I get up, go to work, smile (mostly) and get stuff done, feeling the way I felt?
I now totally get why Vampires sink their teeth into innocents, or why the evil mother in Tangled hid the King's daughter in a tree house for 18 years. Getting a taste of health after being resigned to a life of illness is quite remarkable - a minor miracle. A fairy tale.
I know one thing - like Vampires or the mom on Tangled, I am going to have to figure out a way to make this blood transfusion thing a regular part of my cancer treatment.
I can breathe normally again. My heart has stopped beating erratically. My lips aren't tingling anymore, and I have enough energy to watch an entire TV show without taking a little nap halfway through. My muscles don't twitch unexpectedly. My cramps are gone. I can remember a thought for more than .002 seconds. The color to my skin has returned and I actually cleaned part of the kitchen, something I hadn't done in a long time. I spent hours up and doing stuff today, and have energy for more. So much needs to be done, and now I feel I can do it.
I'd forgotten what that felt like.
I really want to call in to work tomorrow to get long-overdue stuff done at home.
Unfortunately, I don't think you can call in healthy.
The actual transfusion went well. I was there from 9:00 a.m. to 2:15, not the longest infusion I've ever had but certainly up there. The photo below was in the infusion center at the hospital which was quite different from the one in my oncologist's office.
|Hospital Infusion Center|
My oncologist's office infusion room looks like it was decorated by the set designer from the Trailer Park Boys. This one looks like it was designed by - well, whoever designs hospitals. The recliners were wipable plastic, easy to clean with alcohol, not corduroy fabric like at my doctor's. There were no homemade donated knitted throws in weird colors; instead, there were white hospital blankets that come out of warmers. The floors were shiny and the infusion poles were electronic.
During the five hours I was there, I slept, I emailed, I watched Big Love on my iPad (free wifi!), I slept again. They fed me some cream of chicken soup for lunch, and then I took another little nap. I was really tired, as I am every day. It's so nice to feel better and it's going to be hard when the exhaustion hits again, which I hope isn't for a week or two. (Would it be greedy to hope for three or four?)
While there, I discovered that my blood type is A-. I had thought all these years that it was A+. I have given birth to two children without knowing I was Rh negative and without getting Rhogam, which is slightly disturbing.
I've never been able to donate blood, but my husband is a regular and has a tee shirt for hitting the gallon mark. After my experience, I want to thank him, and everybody out there who donates this lifesaving substance so that people like me can feel better for a time.
I especially want thank you for giving my dog something interesting to sniff. Whatever it is you did, anonymous donor, my dog really likes it.
|End of Bag #2|