The Whole Tooth and Nothing But

Well, I’m back from the dentist. I talked over the tooth situation with Dr. D yesterday before my treatment and he said my counts looked good enough to go in and see about some drillin’ and fillin’. My dentist was named Dr. Paul, which is quite deceiving as Dr. Paul is neither a hairdresser nor a man. Picture Charlotte from Sex and the City (the one with the brown hair and big eyes). Same kind of look, same kind of attitude. Really apologetic any time she was about to hurt me. And hurt me she did! Well, no more than a usual dentist. She’s couldn’t tell definitively if there was an infection brewing at the site of my old root canal (where the pain seems to be coming from), but there was a cavity between that tooth and the one behind it. She went ahead and drilled and filled there and on the front of my two front teeth, which were looking a little bad. She also suggested that when my counts are really good, I come back for a cleaning and to extract a wisdom tooth that’s looking pretty bad. Both of those can hold for a bit, but she thinks it would be good to get them taken care of before I get hit with the hard chemo. I’ll be discussing with the cancer docs to get the recommendation.

Here’s something I really hate about the chemo – it’s really starting to affect my brain. Part of it is just typos. Everywhere. I’m sure you can look back a few days and spot many, ’cause I haven’t gone back to look. Some of these are due to stumble fingers, others I have no idea where they come from. I was writing an email to Barb the other day where I typed the phrase “it’s one of his buddies.” I looked up at the screen to see “it’s then of his buddies.” Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? Other times, it’s hard to make the words come in out any proper order. I’ll start typing a sentence and I’ll get about halfway through and realize it makes no sense whatsoever. You people are probably used to this from my emails and my various posts, but it’s new to me.

For the most part, it was just typing that was bothering me. Now it’s leaching into the real world. I stopped by CVS to pick up my next batch of meds and decided to get some 8 hour Tylenol since I’ve been hitting it pretty hard as of late. I look at the shelf, going through the bewildering array of Tylenols until I get to the 8 hour section. I look back and forth through the different quantities until I found the one with the most (I mean seriously, 24 pills? What can I do with that?). I looked at it, saw it was 8 hour, picked it up off the shelf. I get home, open the box, open the bottle. “Hmmm. These look different.” I look at the bottle. Extra Strength Tylenol. Son of a… How could they screw up and put the wrong bottle in the right box? I check the box. Extra Strength Tylenol. Crapola.

So now I’m getting Barb to pick some up on her way home and I’m not going to shop by myself anymore. Here’s hoping the brain cloud takes care of itself before I have to go jump in a volcano.

And I didn’t keep exact track, but I would say I’ve retyped a minimum of 50 words in this post, some more than once. Chemo sucks.

It’s Always Something

So here’s a bit of fun: I have a toothache. Actually, I’ve had it since last week and I’ve been trying to muscle through it with Tylenol. You see, when you’re undergoing chemo, going to the dentist and having holes drilled in your head is a big no-no. For one, it can lead to infections going all crazy in your head. For two, it can be an issue if, say, your platelets are low, in which case you might, I dunno, bleed to death in the dentist’s chair or something.


So today I’m going to give my transplant coordinator and run through the options with her. Above all, I do NOT want my chemo schedule to change. If I have to be on morphine and antibiotics until May, I’ll do it if it means I don’t have to draw the chemo out any longer.

On my page that I use to post these little tidbits, I have the quote randomizer set up as well. Interestingly enough, my Ovid quote is showing right now: “Be patient and tough; someday this pain will be useful to you.” As much as that phrase means to me, there’s just one thought in my head right now.

Bite me, Ovid.

Yup, Still Bald

So here’s the weird thing about having no hair. You think your head’s going to be all cold and you’re going to lose all of this body heat and such, but really, it’s all just weird patches of cold. For instance, put your hands behind your head. You know, like you’re going to kick back in your chair and put your feet on your desk, satisfied in a job well done. Watch out for the pencil holder. Feel where your hands are right now? That’s where my head is cold. Right about where my skull curves under in the back. Just above the collar, just below a hat. Son of a… So instead, I sat at my computer today wearing my stocking cap and feeling Canadian.

Speaking of Canadian, how about the big Olympic flop for North America? The one good thing about it is that now the Devils only have one player left in the tournament – Viktor Kozlov. All of the rest get to rest and relax until the NHL starts back up again. I’m cheering for the Swedes now. Here’s hoping Peter Forsberg plays a LOT in the next few days.

One thing I liked about watching Olympic hockey? No TV timeouts. Just a whole uninterrupted period of hockey. Nice. Plus, I didn’t have to worry that I’d have a lame announcer, since Doc Emerick would be doing all of the US games. It is astounding all of the bizarre and random hockey facts that man has in his head. One of the many reasons he’s the best.


Here’s a semi-uncomfortable experience – being the bald guy in the company cafeteria when the cancer commercial comes on TV.

I’m still being reminded of my baldness at random times during the day. Friday was my first shiny bald headed experience, where I saw my reflection beaming in the glass door on the way in to work. When I was getting the Moondoggie Consortium of Sites together, I put up my old “Don’t Panic” page before realizing it no longer looked like me. Now it does. Every now and then I’ll try to do something else, like run my fingers over my hair when I take a hat off or just put my hands on my head and realize “Hey, that’s SKIN!” I’m sure I’ll get used to it one of these days…

Oh, one extremely happy moment in my morning: the realization that the children of Connecticut have all week off on vacation. I’m not a parent, just a homeowner who unfortunately lives next to an elementary school. Silence truly is golden.

And now I realize I need to work on the site design sooner rather than later – my links are the same color as my text with no underlining. Idiot.

Everything Seems to be Working

Except for that stupid ordered list dot on the “Playing:” info. The main thing though, it looks like all of my email is back to normal. At least I sent test messages to and from all of my various accounts and they all seemed to send and arrive like they should’ve. So, if you know one of my email addresses, you can send me email. If you don’t, leave me a comment – I’ll be getting the email links back on the site in a bit. And as cool as the layout of the Hemmingway theme was, I switched back to Kubrick for the readability. Hopefully I’ll be able to get some design time in this weekend so I can ditch the theme. In the meantime, you gets what you gets. Whaddaya want from me? I got cancer.

Speaking of which, I stopped in today to get my weekly bloodwork and the checkout from the nurse. Turns out my platelets are pretty low. The low is around 100 and mine were more like 70. What does this mean? In the words of the nurse: “Don’t get cut.” I guess that means no bar fights this week. Here’s hoping I don’t wake up with another nosebleed. Check that. Here’s hoping that I don’t get another nosebleed, but that if I do, I wake up first. Eeeewwww…

Here Goes Everything

Well, after agonizing over the new design yesterday and Friday, I’ve decided to say the heck with it and just use a default WordPress theme for now. I still have a lot of setting up and coding type stuff to do to get things like I want them, so I’m going to do all of that first, then worry about the design later. Form before function, you know. Best advice at them moment would be to not send me any email just yet – it’ll take a couple of days for the DNS servers to start resolving to all the right locations and I wouldn’t want to miss your email between servers. I’ll post here when I’m relatively certain that email’s back to normal.

If the site’s not purple any longer, then congratulations! You’re looking at my new home! And if you’re looking at my home, that means… you can leave comments! Welcome to the Brave New World…

Since it’ll be your first time to leave a comment, it’ll be held for review to make sure you’re a real person. So don’t be surprised when it doesn’t show up immediately. Once you’ve commented (and been approved) a couple of times, it’ll go right to commenting in the future.

Good Things Brewing

Changes are afoot here in Moondoggieville! I’m set up with a new webhost, which I’m hoping to be switched over to by the end of the weekend. I’m going to be switching CMS systems from MovableType to WordPress, so I’ll be making sure I’m working in the new place before making the switch. What will this mean to you?

  • A new look to the site, since I can’t just start out my new time with the same old website.
  • Possible short site outage as the net’s DNS servers repopulate with my new location.
  • Longer than usual lagtimes in email replies for a bit as I code the new site and make the transition from one mail server to another.
  • COMMENTS! You’re going to be able to comment! Probably!
  • The revealing of my latest URLs, one of which you’ve discovered, if you’re the clicking kind.

So, bear with me and we’ll get through the weekend together.

Now I have to shut down and move my computer to a new desk as well. Everything’s changing! Couldn’t you just wet yourself?

Still Alive

So this morning was fun. I woke up around 2 AM, laid there in bed for a little bit and my nose started running. Now, I’m not sure if it’s just years of experience at work, but within a couple of drips I can tell it’s a nosebleed, even in the dark. I grab a couple of kleenexes and do the nose pinch (leaning forward, not backward, ’cause I know what I’m doing here). A few minutes go by. I’m getting sleepy again, so I go ahead and tilt my head back for a few minutes (I know what I just said before, but I was sleepy – bite me). A few more minutes go by. I get tired of gurgling, so I go back to the correct method. I’m starting to have visions of Modern Problems and wonder what I did to piss Chevy Chase off. Finally, after a good twenty minutes or so, the bleeding comes under control.

Now comes the wondering. You see, the gemzar I had on Monday is supposed to screw around with my RBCs and platelets. What makes you clot? Platelets. This might not be a good thing. So here I am, 2:30 in the morning, wondering if I’m going to bleed out. Barb’s still snoring away, so I make my way over to the computer. I find a couple of sites that mention a few different symptoms, but nothing about nosebleeds in particular. Then I come across someone else’s site. Their daughter had Hodgkin’s. She went through the stem cell transplant process much like I’m going to. The entries are from 2004. Where’s the update? What’s happening?

These are always bad questions to be asking yourself in my situation reading one of these blogs.

Sure enough, I backtrack and she died from pneumonia complications during the transplant. Wonderful.

This is why I don’t look up Hodgkin’s on the net. I have yet to find survivor’s stories. I find survivors of other cancers. I meet people who went through this. I occasionally stumble into a forum with people touting success. Personal stories though? They’re all “In Loving Memory of” or I’ll get sucked in until the last “but he lost the battle” bit.

So now I have even more of an impetus to fix the site up a bit. The new tagline is “Still Alive” and it’s gonna be right there on the front. None of that memorial crap here – you’re reading about a survivor, baby. And as we all already know, what’s cancer?

Cancer is my bitch.

Photo Day

Well, yesterday was primarily spent sleeping. The gemzar doesn’t seem to be as bad as the cisplatin was, and Dr. D thinks that the decadron they gave me as a premed was causing a large part of my stomach distress. Apparently even though it’s given for its anti-nausea properties, it can have kind of a rebound effect when it wears off. I got my Neulasta yesterday, and other than being a little muddleheaded (compared to last week where I was only a little coherent), I’m feeling fine.

Barb has posted her blizzard photos so you can see what she, her brother and nephew had to dig us out of on Sunday. There’s another new photo for you to see as well, but since that’s a surprise, I’m going to make you click the “read more” to see it.
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