Yesterday I got the port insertion and felt for the first time in 16 years like a cancer patient. Pokes, prods, explanations, hospital beds… tenderness, grogginess, feeling beat up. I complained to a nurse that my neck was sore and she was like “Yeah, you got punched in the neck pretty hard.” I listened several times to the explanation of the procedure, I love how thorough they want to be to explain what’s happening to my body, but I’m finding there are certain road blocks we hit, certain words, that send me away and I stop listening. It’s funny too when the doctor is so enthusiastic about the procedure, clearly happy to tell me all about this amazing mechanism: “We’ll make an incision here, about two inches long, to place the port itself and it sits under your skin like so. There will be another incision here much smaller where the tube is inserted into the jugular–” Whoa, fingers go in my ears, la la la la la I can’t hear you. Shudder. I lay on the bed all afternoon and evening, propped up to reduce swelling, feeling stiff and totally squicked out.

About 10 minutes ago I got the call from the nurse navigator that they got authorization to begin and have made the appointment to start treatment on Friday. Here we go.

I know there are lovely generous people who want to help out, bring meals or pitch in however they can, for which I am deeply grateful. I’m working hard to accept all of it. I think most of you know me as independent and hard working, it is a challenge to let others do for me. But I’ll take it, for the sake of all of us. We (me, my sister Jen, and a couple local friends) are going to post assignments on this site, up where it says PLANNER. I have had some casual offers as well to bring food (Hi Amanda, if you’re reading this, hope I didn’t freak out your freaks :)) but it’ll go through here to try to minimize confusion. If you know of someone here in Petaluma who expressed an interest in helping, you can invite them to join this site as well.  It’s hard to tell who is on here, who has read what, who is even just visiting, so i may send out another round of invitations, forgive any duplicates.

Also rest assured that I have pretty good help at the moment — my parents will be here at least through the weekend. They’ve been amazing: our house is actually a home. Well, almost, we have some art to hang in bedrooms and the kids’ rooms can use some help, but they have been a whirlwind of unpacking and shopping and hanging and organizing, accomplishing in a week what would have taken us months. They’ll stay to see me through the first treatment and its immediate aftermath, until I kick them out to head out for the rest of the summer as originally planned.

Thank you for your caring, loving support. I am so lucky to be part of the wonderful community, and I know you all are going to carry us through.