Today was the day! Steven finally scored the appointment we have been awaiting. It’s too bad it had to be at 8 AM, but we were not going to miss it no matter what. So our alarm went off at the butt crack of dawn, which is a very dark time. We managed to get out of the house by 4:45 AM so we could drive the 179 miles to Gainesville, FL to meet with Dr. Lynch.
It was an eerily easy trip. There wasn’t much traffic but there was enough fog to make most of the drive seem like driving into a dream. We listened to talk radio until the station I prefer started to get that static-y sound that starts when you’re going out of range. And then we drove in silence. Not in a bad way, just in a way that is really odd for us. And then we were there…on time.
It looked the same as it did the last time we saw Dr. Lynch, 10 years ago. It was all coming back to me, only this time I was noticing other things. I noticed that I should put Steven’s handicap placard in my car so I can park closer next time I bring him. I noticed that last time I didn’t think there would be a “next time.” Whereas this time I hope there are a LOT of “next times.” And I noticed that as we walked into the building, last time we were nervous, too.
The doctor was the same as I remember too. He’s got a great way about him that makes you feel like you’ve known him for years. And, when he talks, you listen – like Smith Barney. (Sorry kids, I’m not updating my references for you. Google John Houseman). It didn’t dawn on me until today that Shands is a teaching hospital and Dr. Lynch also teaches at University of Florida. I should have picked that up 10 years ago when I first noticed the Gator necktie. Nevertheless, I realized that he makes everything so clear because he’s used to teaching. It’s not Cancer for Dummies by any means, but what he says is abundantly clear, even with the medical terms. So whether you are a patient or a student, you’ll get the picture.
The only downside to Dr. Lynch is that he tells you everything…even the crap you don’t want to hear! So he touched on the possibility that this whole mess could end badly. He did present it in a compassionate and honest way. He waited for us to acknowledge that we understood and then he quickly moved on to the other options that could end great. We’re picking on of those, by the way, because I won’t even think of any other option. It’s not like I don’t know the reality of our situation, because I certainly do! I just don’t like facing bad outcomes before I have to.
Throughout my life I’ve been aware of all the bad outcomes that could happen to me or the people I love. But if I don’t need to face it today, I neatly file that shit, using the Dewey Decimal System, in a card catalog in the back of my brain. I always know where it is and can grab a card and glance at it when I have to…and then put it right back where it belongs…out of sight. Because I’ve learned that most of the crap that’s gone wrong around me wasn’t even in the card catalog. And most of what’s in the card catalog has never happened. And the few bad outcomes that I saw coming were going to happen whether or not I made myself crazy dwelling in the dark when I should be sleeping! So to be kinda Zen about it, we’ve just decided to be in the moment. OMMMMMMMMM…
So, we move forward with some nasty-ass chemotherapy that’s going to make my handsome husband a skinny, bald, pasty guy for a while. In the best case scenario, that will kill all the cancer that didn’t take off for the holidays and kept growing while the world drank egg nog. And then we’ll do whatever we have to do next to make the bad stuff in his body start acting right by a pseudo in vitro bone marrow transplant that might be his own cleaned up bone marrow, or marrow from some donor. I don’t even want to go there yet. That next step is yet to be determined but I’m counting on the doctors to be The Cancer Whisperers, and I’m counting on them to make cancer to lay down and play dead. And I’m counting on a really good outcome, where I get jewelry again at the end of it.
AND I’M COUNTING ON YOUR PRAYERS!
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