An Unexpected Trip

“If you boil it down, just because someone else does the wrong thing we are not exempt from doing what’s right.”
― E.A. Bucchianeri, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly

The past can hurt, but the way I see it, you can either run from it, or learn from it. –Rafiki (The Lion King)

Nothing about my latest trip to Philly went as expected. Probably not surprising to anyone who has followed my journey so far. We were planning on flying to Philly on that Monday arriving in the afternoon and starting my third round of chemo on Tuesday. I woke up Sunday morning and feeling ok other than my stomach still hurting. I got up and went to the bathroom and that’s when I discovered that there was blood all over my stomach. It appeared my wound was bleeding. More than a little scary. My wife cleaned me up as best she could and covered the wound with some gauze. We immediately decided we would not go to the emergency room here in Greenville. After all, the Greenville doctors are the ones who butchered me in the first place. My wife and sisters began to look for a flight out Sunday night. Unfortunately there was none to be found. We found a flight out of Charlotte very early Monday morning.

More scared than in pain, we flew to Philly and arrived early Monday morning. The center took me in and began doing blood work and giving me pain and nausea medicine through the IV. The tests showed no infection. I had no fever and wasn’t ill, just in pain. I had several doctors look at my wound. A lady from the surgical team checked me out and determined that the bleeding was coming from the wound from two spots, both of which were now open. I had two holes in my stomach from the incision that was made on April 9th.

Now the way the doc determined this was by sticking her finger and other things in the holes in my wound. She then cleaned out both wounds and put a bandage on me. That poking and prodding was some of the worst pain I’ve ever felt. I am convinced that all surgeons have a sadistic streak in them. They must go to a special school to learn there trade. Maybe something like “The School for Sadistic Surgeons”. No matter how much I squirmed and yelled, she hardly acknowledged me. I realize it had to be done but really, that was some painful stuff. The doc said I wouldn’t need surgery or antibiotics, we would have to clean the wound daily (aargh).

So after two and a half days in the center’s hospital, we were sent home on a late flight to Greenville on Wednesday night. No chemo was done so we will be heading back for that on Tuesday. Brenda cleans my wound daily and thankfully the pain gets a little less each day (but it still hurts like a booger). I have been walking a lot better and I was able to make to the first annual “Does This Cancer Make My Colon Look Fat” golf benefit for me and Brenda. I will be posting more about this next time. I feel like I’m getting better even if I’m not. And I don’t look too bad for someone who has inoperable stage IV colon cancer. It’s like what Billy Crystal’s “Fernando” character used to say on Saturday Night Live, “To look good, is to feel good”.

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