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  • Writer's pictureBostnMike

Frankie say RELAX...

Even the greatest comedies have a twist or two where the tone changes, and the “hero” has a moment of introspection that causes the audience to pause and re-think things.

Imagine the pain and anguish of John “Bluto” Blutarsky when he realizes all those years at Faber (where “Knowledge is Good”) were all for nothing.

Or, once they realize “those aren’t pillows,”

and Del Griffith finally stands up to bully Neal Page, realizing that being true to oneself is not a bad thing, and being the “real article” – while annoying to some – is how he finds solace in a topsy-turvy widowed world of polkas and shower curtain ring sales.

Or when Inigo Montoya finally finds himself face to face with the six-fingered man, only to realize that revenge will never bring back his father.

Fortunately, all those films rebound from those “deep moments,” and we land with a big smile on our face during the happily ever after.

Well, for this author, this might be that moment. – not the happily ever after … yet – but the moment of introspection.

You see, there are not a lot of medical updates… I’m in a bit of a lull, preparing for the transition to phase 3. I’ll spell that all out at the end.

But, In the “time between the time” #LaurieBeechman #IYKYK, there’s been a lot of time for reflection. To be clear, this is not about a pity party. It’s an Epiphany (party?). #SweeneyTodd

My stance has changed on the precise wording a few times now. On the heels of the 8-day hospital stay, my take was, “I’m not as tough as I thought I was.” But -upon further review- I have come to realize that was "a bit harsh."

Where I have since landed is this; “Either thru sheer naivety or a 52-year memory bank of never knowing a problem I could not outwit, outplay or brute force my through, I severely underestimated the mental drain this whole “adventure” would put me through. By.a.LOT.

Throughout the last 11 months, my focus had been preparing for or dealing with all the “physical stuff.” Managing the pain of what ultimately totaled eight fractured ribs. Navigating the surprise arm fracture surgery and the side effects of how the meds made me feel. And what I didn’t realize was the mental tax was just as great.

I’ve been back at work for two weeks now, and after 2 or 3 days, I realized, “I’m not as sharp as I used to be.” Focusing on simple things like emails or building PPTs seemed to take twice as much concentration as before. Asking people to repeat themselves because I missed something or drifted off for a moment. Stepping back, I came to the realization I get mentally tired a lot faster.

Before this began (and even leading up to the first phase of the treatments), Workdays going from 6 AM to 8 PM were standard operating procedure. Now, a simple 8-5 knocks me on my tail.

Heck, I’m in bed most days before 8 p.m.! (Which, by the way, does not bode well for a hockey season starting in 9 days when puck drop is generally at 7:00 or 7:30 most nights).

I don’t feel “like me,” and that was more frustrating (and at times embarrassing) than the pain of a broken arm or a handful of fractured ribs.

And I realized Marcellus Wallace was right:

“The night of the fight, you may feel a slight sting. That’s pride fucking with you. Fuck pride! Pride only hurts, it never helps.”

It took me a while, but I coming to terms with it, and I am cutting myself some slack. I don’t have to be at 100% right now. 80% is okay, and I’ll build back. Because I realized everyone else was already cutting me the slack. I (as usual) was being my worst/hardest critic, and I don’t have to be perfect all the time. (For the record, that last sentence may have been the hardest one I've ever written).

Since I started allowing myself to be vulnerable (not to others – but to myself), I’ve turned a few corners. I’m in a better place now and getting better with each day. Both physically and mentally. Turns out the mental low was harder for me than the physical one. Go figure.

So, what’s next?

Well, I’m still recovering from the transplant. I'm still waiting for that first vaccine and ducking germs like Neo did bullets in the Matrix.

For those counting, I’m DOT +46. And after meeting with my Oncologist this past Thursday, we have the next plan.

October 24 will begin two rounds (21 days each) of treatments that are very similar to those I was doing prior to the transplant. Including Darzalex and Velcade injections, some oral meds, and regular labs. Upon completion of that 42-day stint, we’ll get Myeloma counts, and I’m very optimistic that “Phase 3 Maintenance” will begin.

Oh, and the big bonus, I was informed that because the counts were nearly negative prior to the transplant, I don’t need another bone marrow biopsy at this time. #ChristmasInSeptember!

No, I’m not counting my chickens yet… but I am feeling good to have another plan to work. I seem to be at my best when I’m doing that and not [just] stewing in thoughts. But unlike before, I will allow myself the occasional stew.

So I’m not sure who needed to hear this (besides me), but it’s okay to give yourself a break!

Ok, enough of the seriousness…. Let’s get back to the rest of the film! Hockey is Back! Arsenal are still unbeaten in the Premier League. We’ve got a quarter to close at work, and there’s a Kick-off to plan for! (Even if I won’t be able to attend in person).

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2 opmerkingen

Danny Allan
Danny Allan
01 okt. 2023

I think you and I need to catch a Bruins game at the Garden!

01 okt. 2023
Reageren op

Nothing would make me happier!

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