On the phone the other day, a relative said “You sound really good, Chris.” Visitors who see me seated, frequently at our patio table comment on how “good” (I think they mean “healthy”) I look. I feel good much of the time – and let’s be clear that glioma, blessedly, is free of the wrenching pain that accompanies many cancers- the brain doesn’t, interestingly, have a nervous system that allows it to sense pain in itself, for all its massive neural machinery.
Except for the creeping, now neck-down left-side paralysis and attendant nightly muscle spasms (a common fallout from paralysis, I’m told) and a perennial back ache caused by the right side constantly trying to yank the slumping left to something like level. My pain relievers at this point are no stronger than all-day aspirin remedies like Alleve.
I’ve written about my hemiplegia (paralysis) and hemiparesis (muscle weakness), before, and can assure all comers that it’s no fun, especially for a formerly active jogger and hiker who still pines for the trails of Windy Hill and the rest of the Peninsula Open Space. It won’t be entirely unwelcome to cease having to deal with those particular conditions.
Other unwelcome fallout includes, apparently, an enlarged prostrate, which has arrived in sync with the new brain tumors – wether just my luck to get this old man’s condition now, or related to an immune system that’s going nuts trying to contain the cancer, it, too is no fun. When you’re not very mobile, it’s definitely a drag to constantly need to visit the bathroom. Fortunately an old college buddy is now a renowned urologist, and he’s fixed me up with a prescription that’s been a great help.
While we’re on the topic, we see that Christopher Hitchens has gone public with some of the more intimate fallout from his esophageal cancer, so we’ll note that glioma, particularly a right-side lesion, particularly one located on the motor strip has tragic consequences for one’s sex life.
Other than that we’re fine, mom, really….another Countdown post, aimed at, perhaps, helping those who may find themseves walking in my path…