Monday, 2 September 2013
And so another two weeks has passed, and our home life is gradually getting back to normal.
Vineetha is back at work, and it's almost as if she has never been away. The girls go back to school on Wednesday, and we are frantically getting them prepared for the first day back at school.
For me it continues to be onwards and upwards, although there has been the odd glitch, which I shall explain.
My blood counts have been tested on a weekly basis since our return from Chicago, and although there were mild variations the doctors had not been concerned until the results of the 3rd test arrived. My creatinine levels had gone from 58 to 63 and finally to 118, and now Chicago was paying attention. They told me to stop all medication that they had prescribed, as they were really confused by this and wanted to monitor subsequent blood results to see what the effect of suspending the medication would have on the creatinine level.
Anyhow, one morning I went to the kitchen to make a cup of coffee and as the kettle was boiling I spied a white plastic pot (see below)
So I asked my dear wife what she used this for and she told me "I've started putting it in your smoothies to help build your muscle and give you strength".
So now I have to explain to Chicago that there may be an alternative reason for the raised creatinine level! Anyhow, we stopped the 'extra ingredient' from the smoothies and waited for the 4th blood result. And lo and behold it had fallen from 118 to 64.
Oops!! (Note to self: check what goes into your food and drink)
Despite this glitch, things have been going well, and yesterday I took the next step in the steroid reduction from 7.5mg daily to 5mg daily. Fortunately, I am not feeling any ill effect from this and I hope this will continue.
I also noticed an almost overnight improvement in my walk on Day +37, demonstrated by a stronger step and a longer gait. It's still not a very elegant movement, but it's a positive!
Another positive occurred almost by accident, and I still don't know why I did it. As I was walking back to my study, my legs felt really good and I had a sudden urge to jump.
So I did, and to my amazement I cleared the ground (not by much but there was definite ground clearance). I couldn't believe it as I haven't been able to jump for years. I was so excited that I asked the girls to video it. The result is below:
One small step for mankind, one giant leap for Ben Rajan!
I emailed Vineetha the clip, and she asked whether I would send it to anyone else. I promptly told her that I was going to show the clip to anyone who would watch it.
So have there been any other changes?
The effects of the chemotherapy seem to be waning, and I have started some facial hair growth. This is not all positive as it means I have to start shaving again.
As well as that, my scalp has developed a slight shadow which means my hair is growing back ( ... and just when I was getting used to the bald look). Vineetha is very pleased about this!
And finally, I took my first drive in the car last night, since leaving for Chicago back in June. It felt good!