Friday, June 26, 2015

Old Southern White Boys

Is it time to finally retire the Confederate Battle Flag from official display on state property?  How this loyal southerner found an answer to that question (as the story appears in the Montgomery County Sentinel.)

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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Life Changes IX: The Road Ahead

Whenever I bring you an update on my medical story, I always try to be upbeat and to inject a sense of humor.  I’ll be honest and say that I’m having to reach to do so in this one, although I can share this:  The other night the wife and I broke out the Saran Wrap and had a grand old time.  No, it’s not what you think.  Before I can take a bath these days, I have to cover my PIC line—which is a form of IV—with waterproof material.  Saran Wrap actually is the recommended cover, and I can’t do it myself due to the positioning of the line in my arm.  Hence the Saran party.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Life Changes VIII: OK, That Was Uncalled For

And then just like that, I had a week and half ripped out of my life.

On Wednesday, June 10, I began what had become my daily routine normally enough.  I went to the Banner-University of Arizona Radiation Center for my daily dose of radiotherapy, then headed to the Arizona Cancer Center for what was supposed to be the last of my current round of chemo infusions.  On the way to the second stop, a pain flared in my belly.  At first it presented itself as a mild cramp, the kind you might get before needing to go the bathroom.  But a trip to the bathroom did not resolve it.  Within moments, the pain in my abdomen was more than I could bear.  I kissed off the infusion session and announced that I was going back to the Radiology Center to see if I needed a trip to the emergency room.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

“The Dark” Is Out!

In this furthest reach of space, not even God can hear you scream.

As regular readers of my blog and Facebook pages know, my latest novel, The Dark, is now available both in  print and for the Kindle.  I did things a bit differently this time.  Due to the press of time caused by my health issues, I elected not to wait for any reviews before proceeding with the print edition.  If you’ve been following my health advisories, then you know why I elected to publish both editions at once and not delay. 

As with its predecessor, when I started The Dark I had no idea I was ill.  Yet I was laboring under these very intense premonitions that my time could be running short.  I had done only six weeks’ work on the project when I got my cancer diagnosis.  So I can’t claim the choice of subject matter was directly related to my health although the premonitions may have influenced me.  Still, for the second scifi/horror novel in a row I found myself wrestling with issues of both theology and annihilation.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Life Changes Update VII

Yesterday’s dinnertime conversation—

The Bride:  “How was your day?”

Me:   “Woke up.  Ate breakfast.  Drove to radiation therapy.  Came home.  Slept.  Woke up nauseous.  Took pill.  Slept.  Woke up nauseous.  Took another pill.  Slept.  Then you came home.”

Such is my life on radiation and chemo.  I thought the chemo was probably responsible for the low, low, low energy levels.  But my radiation doctor says no, it’s probably her doing instead.  She says studies have shown that radiation zaps the energy and causes great fatigue, even more so than the type of chemo I’m receiving, and I’m getting blasted every weekday for not one but two internal masses.  They don’t know precisely why radiation has this life-energy draining effect.  But the nature of cancer is that your body can’t tell the good cells from the bad cells.  So it sees radiation as a form of attack and rallies bodily resources to defend against it.  I have another two weeks of this ahead of me.  Lord, help me.