Posts Tagged ‘liver’

Approaching seven

Sunday, June 23rd, 2013

IMG_1648 I live it still 2

After a while, survival is just another habit.

I haven’t been keeping this blog up for a while, at least for the purpose I originally created it.

I have a rainbow of reasons why: not wanting to bore my few readers with constant whines about my annoyingly dramatic health, a deep dislike of hypochondria, wanting to forget everything about the last seven years on the good days, struggling to stay intact during the bad ones with no energy left over to do anything except to fight and try to figure out what the latest complication meant.

One week and I mark my biological birthday. One month and it will be seven years since the transplant. "It is amazing – way beyond amazing – that you have survived so long!" A dear friend said to me this morning. She is a highly trained and regarded nurse; she knows of what she speaks. I know she didn’t mean the statement to be as bald as it sounded, but there it is: truth, unvarnished.

About a year ago I started a post about the shock of surviving six years. "I don’t know how to write about this," I whined then proceeded to list the complications and conditions and disasters and few triumphs since I first lamented the knife. I hated the whine so I abandoned it.

For the last year, certainly since the beginning of 2013, the problems of these seven extra years of life have started to rear up, first one after the other, now cascading, and are threatening to sideline me from the game of life, perhaps pull me from the game for good. I face this challenge weaker and wearier, and struggling to shore up my will for what is likely to be my penultimate fight for life. At least I hope it will be the second to last; we’ll see.

So I will be writing here more regularly, posting next the distressing list of things I am coping with now, and talking about the last-gasp treatments that are on their way. If you don’t hear from me for a bit, send a note to remind me of this promise.

Four years and still not dead

Sunday, August 8th, 2010

“A transplant patient with an autoimmune disease? That’s impossible!”

–from an episode of House

I just passed the fourth anniversary of my transplant, or as I prefer to spin it, my fourth new birthday. When the count of years starts getting out of hand, it’s nice to have an alternative, even if it costs an organ.

A scan of my not-so-new liver was tumor-free and the annual draining of the blood showed my various counts lingering near acceptable ranges – acceptable for me if for nobody else. It seems I’m good to go for a while longer.

My hepatologist is brilliant: I could not be in better hands. But even she’s a bit mystified at my continued presence. Oh, she’d probably deny it, but I’ve seen her expression during the bad times, I’ve parsed her careful choice of words. My continued presence is a continuing wonder.

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It's The Stupid Economy

Friday, February 27th, 2009

I have this image stuck in my head:

It’s a few months from now. Everyone who can possibly be foreclosed upon has lost their house and been booted out. The banks have repossessed apartment buildings from the landlords and every tenant has been evicted. And all of us, home owners and renters side by side, are parked on the street, right in front of our former homes, worldly goods stacked around us.

We cook on barbecue grills, sleep on mattresses spread along the asphalt, wash our dishes and ourselves with hoses hooked up to fire hydrants. We queue for the block’s portapotty, all the while staring at our boarded up, crumbling former homes, wondering, “how did we get here?” No answers come forth; we shrug and go about our days.

This scenario is of course delusional. Oh, not the part of all of us living on the streets; that seems all too possible. The delusional part is the idea that everybody will shrug and go quietly about their business. We’re just not that kind of species. Paraphrasing our national court jester: burn, baby burn.

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A funeral, and Dr. Cassandra makes the call(or: The beginning of my own annus horribilus.)

Thursday, June 28th, 2007

Last night I went to my own funeral but just couldn’t hack it. I tried to be a good corpse – really, I did! – but the whole death-funeral-honor-thy-memory thing gives me the creeps so I snuck out of my coffin and bailed through the mortuary window. I did hesitate before bolting; I was worried I’d disappoint people. You know, wreck the last rites, ruin the opportunity to speak nice of the dead (God knows my friends and family have been waiting for the opportunity), wasting all that money on flowers and somber men in black suits, et cetera ad nauseum. But I just had to bolt.

I flashed one of those phony “So sorry!” grins to those who happened to see my escape, but the dearly beloved gathered didn’t look all that concerned. A lot of acted like they actually expected it. My rep, I guess. Nothing I do re: living and dying seems to surprise anyone anymore. So out the window I went and it was a relief. I never could abide a funeral. Want to do something nice for somebody? Do it while they’re alive. Otherwise, don’t bother me. I’m dead.

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Today is the anniversary of my latest death sentence, the third in a series. One year ago (more…)