I was so happy to be home this weekend that I never got around to posting a note to the blog- sorry! It was amazingly wonderful come home on Friday and be able to hug Sid whenever I want. He turned 13 while I was at the apartment, and unfortunately I missed his birthday. Luckily he has not grown out of hugs yet, so I’ve been making up for missing two weeks of those. Drake was staying up in Leesburg, Virginia with Dennis’s father, for the last week, and he came home on Saturday. Dennis’s father stayed with us for dinner and spent the night on Saturday, after delivering Drake back to us, so we had a nice time catching up with him. We are really thrilled to have our whole nuclear family back in one household after a complicated couple weeks.
I ended up having to go into clinic on Saturday for labs, but did not have to have any treatments, so they gave me Sunday off. Today, Monday, I went back up to Durham and, after getting labs again, they “discharged” me. My white count is 3.2, right at the low end of normal, my platelets are at 93K (150K is the low end of normal), and my hemoglobin is 10.4 (12 is the low end of normal). So, you can see that while I have some room for improvement, my numbers look pretty good compared to their lows from only a week before, which were 0, 10K, and 7.9 respectively. Happily, they pulled out the Hickman catheter that I had implanted in my shoulder. I’ll need to get “stuck” again when they need blood, now, but that really is better than having lumens sticking out of your chest. I feel really lucky to have come through the transplant needing only one platelet and one red cell transfusion, and they told me today that I was overall one of the fastest recoveries they have seen. I think it helped a lot that I have no health conditions other than the cancer, and that was actually in complete remission before the transplant. Now that I am “discharged,” I only have to go back for labs once a week. I am under house arrest for the next month though- no going to supermarkets or restaurants- no gardening for 3 months, no swimming for 6 months, and I should try to wear a mask whenever I might be exposed to infectious agents. It will take 6 months to a year before my immune system fully recovers. However, it is a gradual process, with a lot of the improvement and reduction in infection risk happening in the first 2-3 months . Probably they will let me go back to work after another 6 weeks or so, but they won’t commit yet until they see how I do.
Now that I am safely discharged and home from my transplant adventure, I think there is not much of a compelling reason to keep adding to this blog, so this will be my last post. Thanks again to all of you- friends, family, and my wonderful colleagues from work, for all your support. I’ll leave you with a picture of a very happy me with the boys from this weekend.