Friday, January 25, 2013

The accountant and the preceptor

Getting ready to go...the robes
really go with the post-chemo
'do, yes? Nevermind the
The accountant in me - or the biographer - wants to record things whether or not I have time to write about them in any detail. Like talking to the nutritionist, Eric, at the Block Center, for an hour. And attending my final Board meeting for the SF Buddhist Center, officially resigning and finally addressing some very painful issues that have been kind of hanging over the thing since my last meeting over a year ago. Suffice it to say: something of a relief.

RE the Block Center in Chicago, I think they are very innovative and want to help people, and also what they offer, including a whole range of supplements, seems to be astonishingly expensive. Is it better to buy their supplements? I don't know. I opted for Sears and Vitacost. (If I'm dead in a month we'll know why.) It did occur to me that they do phone consultations in order to sell people stuff. But I suppose if the stuff helps people, there's nothing wrong with it. I'm sure their expenses are substantial.

Viradhamma got the dent pulled out of my car for free so I can now open the door.

I'm tempted to write some geeky things about Old English, but will refrain.

I got the results of my last x-ray last night from Dr. Nelson. (Dates of recent lung scans: Oct 18, Dec 5, Jan 13.) Seems like the nodules are not growing nearly as fast as they were on the previous scan (where one had doubled and the other had tripled in size.) Looks like increase is 30% and 5%. (I'm assuming here that they list the nodules with the most growth.) Hard not think "this is how it will be from now on" but I'm learning a bit more not to think in that way. From my point of view, since I was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer over a year ago, my situation completely changes every few months.

Here's the report of change Dec 5-Jan 13:

Interval increase in size of pulmonary mets: rt upper lobe mass 31mm [1.2 inches](prev 20mm); right lower lobe 30mm (prev 26mm). Left upper lobe mass also increased in size.

Dr. Nelson also said she found out that the EGFR mutation test (that I mentioned in this post) can't be done as there isn't enough tissue. She didn't think the results would give enough info to make worth doing a biopsy.

Drew sent this article which I thought was interesting: How Doctors Die

Obtained from the ever-reliable book source known as Dhivajri, I enjoyed reading some "Young Adult fiction" - The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. If you enjoy a bit of sarcasm and adjectives such as "cancertastic," this is your book. Watched the documentary about Spaulding Grey, And Everything Is Going Fine, which was good. Wasn't as much a documentary as a collection of footage.

I'm going on retreat this morning and will be gone for two weeks to be with and ordain the lovely she-who-is-currently-Dawn. I can't write much about my process here because it involves elements that are super hush-hush. I am unlikely to post from there, unless I have to spend time at the cafe for some reason. I had a helpful chat with Sanghadevi, my preceptor, this morning who suggested not having medical conversations during the retreat if possible, which I think is an excellent idea. There is no great rush for me to know Dr. Nelson's chemo proposal during the retreat.

I am looking forward to many things about the retreat. One is that I will be able to more fully focus on the task at hand and not be holding so many threads.

Though I do seem to cough a fair amount, I am very grateful that I still feel healthy. Way healthier in fact that I did, say, two years ago. Still, after April I have no plans. The calendar drops off like a coastal shelf. 


  1. My love to both you and she-who-is-currently-Dawn-and-will-soon-be-?

    I'm looking forward to seeing you both next month.

    Kisses from Hawaii,

  2. Enjoy that retreat. It will be a beautiful thing and probably a relief to just do one, very important and deeply nourishing, thing.
    Love to you both, I will be thinking of you.