Dec 1 Cancer Update: Hit by a Truck


[Dec 21 update: Blood test a few days ago revealed that I'm recovering at a really good rate. It will still takes weeks, maybe months, to get back to full strength. (I feel like an 80-85 year-old man physically, though emotionally and intellectually I'm doing fine.) But it seems that my chances of being alive in a year or longer are pretty good. My doctor is encouraged, as Connie and I are. On January 12 I go in for both a CAT scan and PET scan to determine if the cancer is gone or if radiation or surgery is still needed. I'll meet with my oncologist, Dr. Damian Green, to discuss the results of these scans and what he recommends on Thursday, January 14.] 

I've been getting in touch with my inner slug. Chemotherapy in September and October was a cakewalk. November ran over me like a truck. I’ve discovered that what they say about chemo is true, and that I am not Superman after all.

I've been in bed with a fever for most of the last month. I was admitted to the hospital a few nights ago, spent Thanksgiving receiving intravenous antibiotics, and was sent home that evening with ten days of oral antibiotics. Most days all I have energy for is laying in bed and thinking. I rarely have the energy to read or even turn on my computer (my inbox is utterly hopeless!). Given how energetic I've been my whole life, it's humbling (in a really good way) to have a month where I feel like I've got the motivation of a slug. It reminds me of a weeklong meditation retreat in 1994 with Thich Nhat Hanh.  Lots of conscious breathing and just being—paying attention at the speed of life.

Emotionally and relationally, Connie and I couldn’t be doing better. Lots of love, tenderness, touch, and Connie has been getting some major long-term projects done. You can see the results of her recent creativity HERE (items #1, "Great Story Beads", #3 "Tree Talks About Death", #4 "River of Life" curricula, and #7 "Music Videos for Church Services").

She’s amazing!

I'm scheduled for my 6th and final R-CHOP chemotherapy infusion Thursday, December 3rd.

Those of you who have recently become a “Friend of Michael and Connie”, thank you!! I promise to communicate with you personally when I have the energy to do so; hopefully soon.

Wishing everyone a joyous holiday season!