Day +4, Saturday

Photo of the Day: Half way through watching the Lifetime 24/7 “Christmas Movies” (a type of horror for many) I excused myself mid-shot to pee. Again. 36 hours into the “Pee every 2 hours, if not more, or else suffer potentially REALLY unpleasant side effects on your bladder” and I’m over it. Thankfully, only 12 more hours to go, although I’m not sure how the time change will affect that. Just my luck and it’ll be 13 hours. That’s exactly 6.5 pees to go and one last restless night. My bladder thanks me though, and in the end – that’s the permanent thing that matters.

It’s 8:57 pm as I’m starting this post, and the thing that I’m happiest about is that my alarm won’t go off in T-3 minutes for me to void my bladder. Again. All day yesterday, last night and today consisted of walking to the bathroom with Bart, my IV pole. Yes, I named my pole Bart – Bartholomue – but that’s another story. At some point early this afternoon, I would sit in my bed, cheesy Lifetime (no Hallmark in the hospital, sadly) movies, my head nodding on my chest. I’d wake up 18 minutes later, looking at the clock and then checking my movie. Thankfully they are so terrible that you know the ending within the first 5 minutes. My saving grace.

But today wasn’t terrible, in fact, it was actually nice. Patricia, my nurse warmed up my tea for me and surprised me with a cat mask, as she knows how much I love my House Monsters.

Cat mask + face mask = no bueno. I adore my nurses

Then it was pre-chemo prep medication regiment and then my FINAL ROUND OF CHEMO! Pre-transplant it was 4 days of chemo, and post was only 2. The Cytoxan acts as an immune suppressant, so hopefully what’s left of my blood cells don’t attack my donor’s new stem cells, that “minor mismatch” where he’s Type O and I’m Type A. If it happens, it typically occurs between Day +4 through Day +14. Cytoxan also kills very fast growing cells, so methinks by mid-next week, my hair will be gone. I’m surprised it’s staying as long as it had.

Patricia and Bart

Between chemo and another Red Blood Cell transfusion, I went out for a quick walk. Bart was helpful in holding my phone so I could listen to music. He glides very smoothly and circling the 7th floor Atrium is akin to holding hands in a roller rink while zooming around.

Yes, I just said that. Clearly, I need a solid amount of sleep.

One blood transfusion later and I hopped into bed, starting my weird dance of nodding off/watching Lifetime/going to the bathroom/eating random Halloween Candy. There was a lot of in & out of my room; privacy is tough to come by. So I’m doing my best to be as pleasant as I can. I’ve got another mini fever – a trend that seems to occur every afternoon; there are so many things that can cause this, but as I understand it, it’s normal in Stem Cell Transplant patients. But I trust my Team, the staff here, and the wonderful nurses on 3NE. I’m so grateful to them, and to my friends and family for all of the kind love and support.

Bart hates Lifetime just as much as me.

Oh – and I didn’t get a picture of it, because I was SO EXCITED to have a Zoom date with them, but tonight I got to hang out with Andy and his sister’s family. I love and miss them – they bring so much life and love into my life and, rude noises aside (which I sorta miss at this point), they are some of the best people I know.

T-36 minutes until my 10pm alarm “Walk to the WC” goes of. Yeah.

  1. So glad you had aZoom session with Andy and family. We’ve been thinking of you all day. We hope you can get some real rest. Glad you are walking. Keep up your fantastic blogs. They are an incredible source!
    ❤️Dad

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  2. Happy Halloween from the west coast. Knowing how much time you spent in San Diego know how much I’m cherishing life in the desert. Big hugs ❤️
    Julia

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  3. I have these lovely images of you gliding around a roller rink with Bart! Hooray that you are done with the chemo.

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  4. Halloween gone, back to Standard Time (daddy’s happy) Warm Weather, and a Cookie Baking. It’s going to be a wonderful day! So great you got to see the family, especially the giggly girls🤭 They are such sweethearts. So nice to have Bart as a friend and companion. After all, where would we be without them??

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  5. Dear Marit,
    We are thinking of you and sending heaps of love. Glad that we can follow your progress.
    Love you,
    Chris, Stan, and Carly

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  6. Hi Marit, this has been a TRUE Halloween for the ages. The wind blew here all night and the moon glared and the world felt very unsettled, but you’ve knocked it out of the park with your sensitive, smart, and resilient account of your sojourn in the heart of American biomedicine. Here you are moving down an unknown risky path and you are reassuring me, a mere onlooker, that courage and excellence still exist!! Hats off to Bart and all your helpers, symbolic or otherwise. David and I are thinking of you everyday and we so appreciate the details of your journey. If ever there was a state of being “born again” it is the immunological state you’re in. You’re teaching us all about courage and the means to live well. Take Good Care!

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