Archive for November, 2009

Lumpy on the Radio

On the day that I got my H1N1 influenza vaccination the radio station we listen to here on South Vancouver Island (The Zone, 91.3) was fielding lots of calls about whether it was a good idea or not. Many of the calls were paranoid and supposed an enormous government conspiracy. I called in and left a comment on their line basicially saying that I had had cancer, had got immunized, felt fine except for a sore arm and was looking forward to not having H1N1 flu.

Now, my comment seems to be in heavy rotation on The Zone’s break fillers. It’s weird to be driving along in the truck and realize that the voice you are hearing on the radio is your own. I imagine they play it because it’s fairly informative and not very hysterical. Anyway… if I’d known it was going to get so much play I would have tried to sound like less of a nerdy goon.

“I wrote a song, but I can’t read music. Every time I hear a new song on the radio I think, “Hey, maybe I wrote that.””
Stephen Wright

“New York: the only city where people make radio requests like “This is for Tina – I’m sorry I stabbed you”
Carol Leifer


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A week or so ago, Gord and Janet called to confirm dinner with us on ‘Remission eve’. They also said that they’d be bringing dessert, no exceptions.

I announce the Tom Tam cake…made with Tom’s favorite cookie, the Tim Tam!

Thanks, Janet!

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This is the morning of my check up with my oncologist Dr. Sheila. I have been feeling “off” for the past week but it’s hard to know if that is because of a mild reaction to the H1N1 vaccine or because of anxiety related to this examination. I have been jumpy.

We wake up at 6am and loaf in bed until 8. I’m a bit of a basket case emotionally and have come to expect that on the mornings of these checks. There is a sun shower early and an intense rainbow because of it. It’s very beautiful and affects me emotionally. We get washed and dressed and head out to Pure Vanilla for scones and coffees. Cassie’s fruit galette is disappointing… the pastry was not flaky… sigh… our life is so hard <sarcasm>. Then it’s off to the Vancouver Island BC Cancer Association facility beside the Royal Jubilee Hospital.

It’s busy there. The clinic waiting room is full. I notice that the pamphlet rack has a new sign: “If you touch it… take it with you or throw it in the recycling!”. This is one of the measures to fight the transmission of influenza viruses but I think it will have the unintended affect of preventing people from looking at pamphlets.

Dr. Sheila breezes in, tells us that I look great, says that my blood test results look fine, prods and pokes my neck and torso, congratulates me on my continued remission, shakes my hand and leaves.

And with that… I pass one year in remission. As soon as the doctor leaves the exam room Cass and I grab each other in a fierce, tearful hug. I didn’t realize how much tension, worry and expectation we had been holding in over the last week in anticipation of these results. For me, this is an important anniversary. It’s one year since they first declared I was in remission. Through our happy tears we agree that this was a great year… a year of good love, fun, work and life. Every year you are well is a great one.

We will have some friends over for dinner tonight. Cassie is making roast beef. Yum.

I will have my next check in March 2010. Here’s hoping for another 4 months of “no lumps”.

“I’m very pleased with each advancing year. It stems back to when I was forty. I was a bit upset about reaching that milestone, but an older friend consoled me. ‘Don’t complain about growing old–many, many people do not have that privilege.’”
Earl Warren

“Life isn’t a matter of milestones but of moments”
Rose F. Kennedy

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Tomorrow is my one year check up with Dr. Sheila. My anxiety runneth over.

“I want money in order to buy the time to get the things that money will not buy.” Carl Sandburg

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