Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Face To Face

This morning Angela and I went to Cancer Care again to start the preparations for my radiation treatment. 6 weeks ago they made a cast of my face with which they will literally screw me to the table while they point a computerized radiation gun to the underside of my chin. The idea is that I will not be able to move at all in order to prevent more tissue damage than necessary. Today they just wanted to make sure that the cast still fits. I guess they assumed that most chemo patients would have lost some weight by now. Not me, though, I'm staying nice and portly.
Lucky for me I am not claustrophobic at all. I will have to wear this mask every day for 15 minutes over a period of 7 weeks of treatment. If everything goes according to plan, the radiation will start on Tuesday, August 4th.
This morning was definitely a reminder that the real treatment is still ahead of me. I was told that I can expect certain side effects as the radiation process progresses. My mouth will very likely be extremely sore which will make it more and more difficult to swallow food. 50% of patients that had induction chemo first (including myself) will end up with a temporary feeding tube at the end. Ah well, let's keep those worries for later.
For now I am excited that things are moving ahead as planned.

6 comments:

Laura said...

Hope you embrace all the gastronomic delights of Montreal on your trip. And all the other delights as well. Congrats on staying nice and portly.

kevin Aichele said...

Man I am proud of you. Your attitude has been so amazing thru this process. It's a real wake up call to me about the importance of looking at things thru a positive lens no matter how difficult, challenging, or terrifying. You really are a great man. I love you!

Astrid said...

Krass!! Auch ich bin beeindruckt von deiner Offenheit und dem Mut, mit dem du das Ganze durchstehst. Du bist das beste Paradebeispiel eines Steh-auf-Maennchen und sehr inspirierend. Die Fotos sind schockierend aber gleichzeitig bin ich froh daran so besser Teil haben zu duerfen.
Eine gute Sache hat es allerdings noch: Wenn man es nicht besser wuesste, koennte ich behaupten, du spielst demnaechst bei Star Wars und dies sind deine Kostuemvorbereitungen :)

Bleib so wie du bist, hab dich lieb und vermiss dich!

Nolan said...

The upshot of this whole thing is that the hospital made you a swanky new, custom fitted Halloween mask for free! In your face, Cancer!!

gina said...

How did it feel staring yourself in the face? Did you feel like a little pep talk? What an amazing journey you are on, Olaf.

hannahbanana said...

Olaf - You are amazing - thank you for sharing this with us all. Know that Leonard and I are thinking of you every day - and are sneaking in a prayer or two along the way!! I hope this beautiful sunny day finds you in good spirits and feeling good enough to go for a run! Remember to wear a hat -- the sun is actually out there today! Take care my friend. (PS -- I am hoping that I have actually signed on to this correctly! Here goes)