As Mike Nichols Used to Say…

November 13, 2009

…”The champagne is flat and the caviar has run out–will it never end?”

Now, where’s she going with this? one perhaps wonders. Good question–I’m rather curious myself.

The scans are back, O Best Beloveds, and there’s cancer. More than ever, though volume was not determined, so there could be a lot or it could be just sprinkles all over the place. More in the liver, stuff in the skeleton, splotches around the spine–this accounts for the back pain–lotsa lymph nodes, other spots as well. There’s some “inactive” goop in my lungs (killed off cells? Or just dormant?) which has caused fluid in said lungs.

And? You already know the drill; we keep on Femora for a month or so, see what happens there, Dr. W. goes to CancerCon and sees what he brings out of there, and so on. He’s subdued but still optimistic; the situation is not immediately dire but “dire” is visible on the list of possibilities.

But right now? I’m okay. My pain is under control (if it gets bad, we may do radiation, but there’s lots of reasons not to go there as well). I’ve got shortness of breath from the lung fluid, but I can deal with it, and there are always needles to remove the fluid, I was not entirely overjoyed to hear. (I mean…yuck.) Lisa R. sent over my favorite Dalmatian cake from Big Sugar. Christopher is sending over a big box of books. Steve took me out for some of the freshest, sweetest sashimi I’ve ever had. We are still going to NOLA in December, and are putting together a Euro-trip for June. (England! World Cup! Norwegian folk festival!) Please note that Dr. W. thinks it is perfectly fine to plan a trip for June.

I really don’t have anything to complain about.

Right now, that is. Really. I’m not saying that to impress anyone with my stoicism. I’m certain I will have lots to complain about in the future, and believe me, Beloveds, I will. I’m saving up whinges and cuss words! But I might as well save it; there’s only so many different ways to say the same thing. Right now, I might as well talk about food. What I’m eating now (pate and bread), what I plan to eat this weekend (bacon-wrapped hot dogs, possibly more of that sashimi), that incredible sounding mole place the Times wrote up a couple of days ago (“Moles La Tia, offering the widest selection of traditional and experimental moles in town. Duck with tamarind mole? You got it. Scallops with hibiscus mole? Done. The restaurant’s hidden genius: chayote soup, blended into a lush purée.” Wouldn’t that be a fun place to have Thanksgiving dinner?)

Okay, has she lost her mind? Is she heavily in denial? Is she that shallow?


But also this: It’s been twelve years. (The anniversary swooshed past us this year.) We have, and are doing what we can, within reason. We still will. The outcome may or may not be written already. The situation isn’t dire, Dr. W. said, just not good. So I could spend time brooding, or I could spend it living. What, exactly, does it mean, to be a fighter? I really don’t know, but to me, it feels like a hearty dose of shrugging is involved. I honestly think I’ve got it kind of great, under the circumstances, and it’s a change from that that worries me more than anything else. Here’s the truth; I’m hoping to continue to have a kicky time throughout the rest of this, but that cancer does not always cooperate in such ways does scare me. But that’s why I’m not going out of my way to have an existential crisis; it feels like a waste of precious time. Like having a generic Thanksgiving dinner.

But certainly, that may change, and if it does, I will surely write you about it.

Not before I write up that NOLA food/friends/music orgy, though. I still owe you.