Saturday, February 20, 2010

Channeling Apolo

I do not get it. What a bad call by the referees. United States short track skater, Celski, disqualified from the the Olympics short track 1000 meter race. Hmm. It looked like the other skater caused the problem to me. Obviously, there is more to the sport than I will ever understand. Part of the game.

Kind of reminiscent of my week. Rolling with the punches. Taking the good with the bad. Understanding most, not all. Part of my game.

Following up on the events of my past weekend, I talked to a nurse from Kaiser Neurology this week. They have ordered an MRI of my brain and some blood work. We agreed that I would visit Dr. Kaplan (my neurologist) in a couple of months. The nurse assured me that there is not much Dr. Kaplan can tell me now that I do not already know right now and by waiting a couple of months, he will be able to begin laying the groundwork for me to get my driver's license back. Though I do not have official word from DMV, I am guessing that my license was suspended for a minimum of three months, potentially for six. I must remain seizure free. I am hoping for the best.

I also had an appointment with Dr. Sweet this week. All is set for chemo treatment number five on Monday. He was concerned by the seizure activity but rather than tell me I need to "do some laundry" as he usually jokes, he confirmed my decision to stop working. He re-read my surgeon's report where she stated that my tumor had shrunk from four to three centimeters, confirming that the chemo is working. He looked at the spider bite on my hand and the resulting infection. It did not concern him too much. He told me I could expect more fatigue - same warning of treatment four. Best of all, he told me I could take some ibuprofen for the lingering achiness resulting from my fall, when I seized last weekend. I have been trying to limit my dose to once per day and probably will not take any more after tonight. I have vicodin prescribed to me too - but I am not a fan. I only take it when I really hurt. I do not want to take it for the consistent, yet relatively minor, aches and pains that have plagued me all week.

In closing this blog entry, I just watched Apolo Ohno struggle for bronze. However, as I type "struggle for bronze" I realize that the announcers are speaking to his brilliance of overcoming his slight error at the start of the race to earn the bronze medal. Later, Apolo reported to the television broadcaster that he lost a lot of speed when he slipped at the beginning of the race. He had to dig down deep in order to" leave it all on the ice". In doing so, Apolo is now the most decorated U.S. Winter Olympian in history. Amazing.

Obviously making mistake and earning a bronze medal is a lot different than making a mistake and being disqualified, as Celski was earlier. I have to wonder if Apolo Ohno had something similar happen to him in one of his prior Olympic appearances - an experience to draw from. Later, after reading that this is Celski's first Olympics. it ocurred to me that it is all in how we learn to overcome our errors that make us great. Experience and dedication. Apolo has an abundance of both.

As I become more versed in dealing with my cancer and resulting physical symptoms, I hope I can channel Apolo's determination and brilliance. I am not thrilled to have this particular experience to draw from...but the only disqualification I want on my front is the cancer itself.

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