Posted on June 19, 2017Ed Talks About Cancer pt.1
See the video here: https://youtu.be/bvp8au9rEF8
Two weeks ago, over the course of a few days, I went from feeling well-rested and more energetic to being huddled in a ball in my bed, under my down comforter, with violent shakes, chills, and a fever. The next day I was tired and “ill,” but most importantly I had turned a ghastly yellow. The jaundice came on fast, and off to the Cancer Center we went on Friday the second.
We assumed we’d have to go to the ER that night, but we’d hoped to catch one of my doctors before they left. We spoke with my surgeon before he left the cancer center, and let him know that some research we did into the drugs I was taking (my pills for pain, and an anti-depressant my ocno recommended), and found a few suspiciously coincidental symptoms. He focused on the cancer-related medical knowledge he was used to, and we went along with it. Cover our bases. The timeline added up, we hoped desperately that we were right.
He helped us check in to the ER, and I ended up staying in the hospital for six days. First, they had to get my jaundice under control. Next, they had to figure out what caused it. After four scans and a biopsy, it was clear.
When I heard this, I was rocked. I literally saw my life flash before my eyes. First I laughed in my oncologist’s face. Then I had a total body cry. I’ve never asked “why me?” but I did ask “are you EFFING kidding me?” All this surgery, all this recovery, all this effort, my missing organs, the last two months of uphill struggle… What was the point?
I shared a big cry with Vanessa and my best friend, Laura, who were in the room at the time. We sat and looked at each other and all had the same thought - Ed’s going to die. They gave me some time alone, and I sat with this for a while. When they returned I’d cried it out, and then we got busy planning.
Last Thursday I was released, considerably less yellow than even the night before. It felt good to not only be out of the hospital, but to smell fresh air, see non-medical-worker humans, and to EAT REAL FOOD. Because of my restrictions, food in the room wasn’t great at all, and I, in fact lost MORE weight. Once I got home, I sent my brother (who stayed with me that day) to the store for fresh, organic fruits and veggies. I couldn’t wait to cook and eat real food again!
So I’m out, and despite a setback this week due to overextending myself with my family last Friday, my energy is back on the upswing. This is important, because I have a lot of work to do.
The next step is to put me back on chemo, which I start next week. I’m not crazy about it, especially since it will be a 2-chemical cocktail this time, as opposed to one like the first time. This means I’ll likely have more severe side effects, too. The survival numbers for stage four pancreatic cancer are not good. Remember that I’m also a double-rare case, having already been down this road. The work I have to do isn’t just sit and take what’s given to me. I will fight the whole way, and I’ll tell you all about what that means.
So, what can you do? Hell yes, my supporters out there are strong, and they care about me. But maybe they aren’t sure exactly how to help. This week I’ll be talking more about EXACTLY what you can do to help Vanessa and I get through this. Please remember that while she is my girlfriend, we do live together, and she is an impressive person, she has a life and a career to keep on track, too. She’s not my nurse nor especially not my mom. We’re a team, and we need you.
We’re reorganizing the volunteer side of this debacle, and are considering a new fundraiser. Please stay tuned to the Team Ed news source of your choice so you don’t miss a thing: YouCaring, LotsaHelpingHands, or TeamEd on Facebook. If you want to check in, or just send well-wishes, please use YouCaring or TeamEd on Facebook. I appreciate and accept all the positivity coming my way, but please try not to text me or Vanessa for a personalized update. There’s so much going on, and I only have so much energy to use in a day, that all the texting becomes stressful. Thanks for understanding.
I’m about to really join the fight of my life, and I need you to help me do it. Chances? Sure they’re slim. Hope? I got hope through the roof, and my posse is strong. Thanks for watching, feel free to leave a comment.