Greg, How Are You?

Mail Call – Questions Answered

by on Nov.26, 2010, under Mail Call

How are you sleeping?

Lately, very well.  Usually two sessions of 3-4 hours with a wake in between for vitals, snacks, etc.  I wake up several times a night to pee and I have a plastic urinal bedside so I only need to sit up.  My best friend : ear plugs.  Makes such a difference.

What are you eating?

I’m just snacking my way though the rebuilding of my gut.  Some people get nausea or mouth sores on go on IV food called TPN.  My mouth has been really on the better side and I rinse with salt water many times a day.  I drink Ensure and Enlive, popcicles, applesauce and cottage cheese.  The other day I had half a stryofoam up of beef stogonoff.  Crackers and peanut butter.  Strong hunger can bring on nausea so sometimes I’ll dry heave, recover, drink some water and a few ounces of Ensure and recover in 10 minutes.

How’s your weight?

Amazingly, it was 201 this morning at 3am.  I ‘bulked up’ on pizza and stuff before I came in at about 208 pounds.  Frankly I’m amazed I haven’t lost more.  I’m also maximally hydrated.  They put 6 liters a day into my via my central Cook catheter.

What are you doing with your time?

For a while I was just surviving.  Dorene or my parents are here every day so there is conversation.  I have Tracey’s Macbook Pro and I spend plenty of time on the internet, reading emails, climate news, facebook and the like.  I fold origami cranes and give them to the staff (Registered Nurses, Nurses Assistants, Custodial, Dietitians).  The exercise bike is my friend and I’ve worked up from 30 minutes when I was weaker to 90 minutes now.

Do you go out of your room?

No, I’m a total prisoner of the room.  My immune system is, the say the least, severely compromised.  Without functioning bone marrow, I can’t make my own reds, whites and platelets.  I get packed reds or platelets as an infusion every few days depending on my daily blood labs.  That’s why it’s so exciting to be making my own cells.  I don’t need infusions and my graft, the return of my own stem cells, has taken hold.  I’m like that kid all proud he can tie his own shoes.

How are the nurses?

The Stanford Hospital BMT nurses are awesome people, total pros and wonderfully nurturing.  And some even play rock band.

How do you feel?

I’m on my third day of feeling more good than discomfort.  Before that, flu like body load ruled and generally I was uncomfortable from nausea, pain from cramps, intestinal bloating.  Now I’m energetic, at least between naps and feeling my oats.  Actually, I’m on fire about a business for the arts and entertainment sector and that’s occupying my mind very well.

2 comments for this entry:
  1. marya

    Greg — I am loving these updates! Go go go! I’m rooting for your platelets! I’m cheering for your reds! I’m doing flying kicks for your immune system!

    Love to you and Dorene and all the wonderful people taking care of you and helping you get better.

  2. Kristine

    Love the updates, probably saves you a ton of texting too! lol… We love you..

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