Day +41, Monday

Photo of the Day: Mom went to “Harrison Tweet” (aka Harris Teeter) to pick up a few things. I’ve been craving watermelon. But she also got Phish Food, replacing the pint I polished off last night – and a few other pints as well. This was such a better picture than the watermelon, plus it has Mac & Cheese in it, so really, it’s a Freezer Full of Happiness.

The Ramen that I made for dinner smelled like Smelly Feet, and was clearly inedible. I tried – I really, really did; after all, the stuff was from Harrison Tweet – as Mom calls it – and more expensive than the standard Trader Joe’s Ramen. But after two sips, it was an option of being sick or choosing something else. So I opted for clementines and cheese slices for dinner, followed by ice cream. This pretty much means that I win.

The watermelon was OK, a little overripe. I was very touched that Mom picked this all up for me while I fell asleep, post Clinical Center Visit.

Today was decent. Per Monday, I had my standing appointment in the Day Hospital. This morning’s shower was just lovely, and I was out the door without waking Mom by 8:15 (okay, 8:20), only 20-ish minutes late. Thankfully the line getting onto campus wasn’t bad and I sailed through vehicle inspection and found primo parking in P1 Lot, and had checked into Phlebotomy by 8:35. As I no longer have a Central Line (yes yes yes!!!), every visit to the Clinical Center will involve a first stop for Labs, a small sacrifice to make. By 9:45, I was checked into the Outpatient Day Hospital, and by 10, I texted Daniele my room number (5436, near the window).

Two for the price of one! Erin (left) was one of my main practitioners when I was inpatient, and now my main contact is Daniele. I can’t say enough wonderful things about these two. In my excitement to see Erin – the first since getting out of the hospital – I gushed (yes, gushed) about The Great British Baking Show finale. She did the same. Unfortunately, Daniele has not yet seen the Great British Baking Show finale. We apologized profusely.

Today’s counts were looking good. WBC was above 3, Hemaglobin is above 10, and Platelets were 135. Aside from the platelets, my counts are actually higher than they were pre-transplant. That being said, I still have a +41 Day immune system – I’m not even producing B cells yet (a type of White Blood Cell that is helpful with things like inoculations and remembering what foreign invaders – like Tetanus, or the flu – look like, and helping call other White Blood Cells, like the T & NK Cells to attack). Pre-transplant, those cells didn’t really work well anyway; at least now, I’ve got a chance. But it takes time for these cells to grow, upwards of a year. But the good news, is that things are slowly improving.

Otherwise, it was a low-key check-up. My skin is doing OK, albeit very dry, lungs are sounding good, and I really don’t have too many complaints. Magnesium is not fun, Tacrolimus level was a tad low – so we’ll drop the Mag and up the Tacro dosage through Wednesday evening, and recheck levels when I’m back in the Clinical Center on Thursday. I think this will be a routine, as I’m getting to know my body on these medications. As long as my counts continue to improve, I’m OK with that.

I don’t know about you, but that’s a pretty incredible looking graph of my WBC that Erin pulled up.

Post appointment, lunch at the apartment with Mom was great. I ventured out of the box and just went wild and crazy with gnocchi and Madras Lentils. It came out well, more like a vegetarian goulash, and I ate most of it. I napped hard, skipped a hike, chatted with Andy and then watched a few episodes of Outlander with Mom. There are a few things I need to say about this. First, it’s a festival miracle, but there were no Christmas movies watched today. And second, watching Outlander during one of the juicy sex scenes with your mother in the room is painfully awkward. I mostly looked at my phone.

Mom laughed and said she didn’t mind that. She was more annoyed that they “did it” in the barn and wasn’t the straw scratchy? I thought I would die, but thankfully busied myself with important things, like photographing ice cream. And starting on this post. The End.

I have no words.

  1. Looks you are getting better every day. Looking for the B cell count to appear. Hope that your taste buds return to normal Maintain that fantastic attitude.


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