The highlights of the day are:
- The bacteria infecting my port has been identified as moraxella. There’s a tiny chance it was sourced intestinally, but moraxella is more of an upper respiratory, ear infecting, sinusitis kind of bacteria. How did it get to my port? Unknown.
- Good news: The latest culture taken from the port shows there are no more of these moraxella in there. We’re still not 100% sure I can keep the port, but so far so good. They are testing the moraxella for susceptibility to more pointed antibiotics that the cefepime I’m currently on. They also want a third culture from the port to come back negative before I can go home.
- Aches and pains: I have an itchy rash (probably from the cefepime), I get daily headaches (probably from not sleeping well), I get anxious when I sleep (probably because someone is always popping in), I get hemorrhoid pains (probably from all those children I birthed)… and for a girl full of chemo, that’s not too bad.
- The hair: It’s holding on! My scalp has started getting a dull ache, almost like taking a tight pony tail out after it’s been in all day. I feel equal parts excitement and nervousness when it comes to being bald. I can picture myself looking like a striking wakandan warrior… or my head could also look like the back of an albino toad: speckled and oddly… amphibious.
I had some visitors! Thankfully, the room is not the only place we could hang out. There are several areas for families with puzzles, games, coloring books and seating. I did my best to get them into museum mode – “Oooo! Look kids! A Nurse!! What does she do? Let’s ask her about…” “Look! The blood is slowly coming down the line… almost at the port… getting closer…” “Mommy, why’s the blood hanging on that thing?”… Yeah. They were into it. They all have a morbid fascination with the port in particular. James cringes as he steps closer to get a better look. David regularly asks me to see it throughout the day.
I went for a walk through the hospital yesterday. Being Sunday, it was mostly empty over by the clinics, with long hallways and closed doors. If I’m out of my room, I have to wear a special mask that fits snuggly and forces me to breathe through it, and I have to take my IV wheel stand along. It all came together, producing a serial-killer on the loose vibe. As I went along I crossed a few other serial-killers out for a stroll. Some just stared straight ahead as they walked and wheeled by, others gave me a glance and a whsup nod. I nodded back. A little rush of camaraderie… we’re in the gang. We own this place. Those nurses better not cross us… we’re… The Cancerous Ones.
- For my aches and pains to subside.
- For my port to be salvaged.
- For family unity and joy!