25% complete!

On Wednesday, I completed infusion #3 of 12. My Mom came with me this time. It was wonderful to have her with me, and I think it was nice for her to see how easy the whole process is.

I started off the day kicking butt at Orange Theory with Jamie. It was such a great way to start the day, and gave me tons of energy for the rest of the day. My Whoop heart rate monitor, it indicated that I had the highest recovery level since I started using it three weeks ago. I’ll probably post more about how I’m using Whoop another time.

From there, Mom and I headed to MGH after we saw Jamie off to his board meeting in Ohio. Since there is often a good amount of time spent waiting between appointments, we took a nice stroll along the Charles after they did my blood work.

When we got back to the hospital, I got my blood test results and had a pre-meeting with the nurse before the infusion. I was pleased to know that my white blood cell count was higher than two weeks ago, just a tiny bit below the normal range. Even better news, my neutrophil count (infection-fighting white blood cells) was significantly better than two weeks ago, well within the normal range. My creatinine level was a bit high indicating that my kidneys are probably working too hard, which the nurse said could just be a sign of dehydration. Looking back, I definitely wasn’t drinking enough water in the last week up to and including that morning’s workout. I’ll up the water intake going forward. We also scheduled the mid-course PET / CT scan for mid-October. This is where we’ll see how much the tumor has shrunken. It’s no longer visibly protruding from my chest, and I can barely feel it below the surface. It will be nice to see the change quantified in the upcoming scan.

From there, we went to the infusion unit where Mom got to meet Nurse Amanda. Mom saw why Jamie and I love Amanda so much, and she saw that I was in very good hands. Amanda continues to amaze me with her personality, attitude, and especially her knowledge. She always wants to know exactly how I am managing the side effects and has great tips for things to try for the next round of the upside down. I showed her my charts from the last blog post. At first she gave me a quizzical look (which I read as “this guy is insane”), and then I think she found it super helpful figure out what advice to give me on how to better manage these side effects. I’m definitely going to continue the Zofran through Saturday night rather than stopping on Saturday morning since Saturday was my worst day in the last two rounds. She let me know that Zofran can saturate the cells after a few days, so it may make sense to use Compazine on Sunday if I need it through then.

Time flew by as I had great chats with my Mom and Amanda while overlooking the Charles River.

Twice during the day, I was asked, “Is this your wife?” When I said “No, this is my Mom” to the first woman who asked the question, she looked at my Mom and said, “You look so amazing!” Then she turned to me and said, “I’m so sorry.” I laughed and explained that this has been happening for the last 25 years. When I was 19 years old, I took my car in for an oil change a couple of hours after my mom did the same thing for her car, and the shop owner said, “Oh, your wife was just here.”

Before we knew it, those beautiful words appeared on the screen! “INFUSION COMPLETE.”