Tuesday, December 4, 2007

A Walk on the Mild Side (A Look Back at Hotel Hope)

As soon as I learned that I could ignore the "Authorized Personnel Only" sign on one of the corridor doors, my Hotel Hope walking life blew wide open.

Instead of line pacing like an expectant father, I could trespass through the forbidden door and make one huge loop around the floor. My daily goal was to do 10 laps or 1.5 miles without my omnipresent dance partner (aka IV pole). (I love the guy, but he slows me down something fierce.)

On one of my "hospital rounds," my physical therapist asked if she could come along. I looked down at her short stature and shorter legs and said, "Sure, if you think you can keep up. I have long legs, and I know how to use them." It was like a Great Dane walking with a Pomeranian.

My walk started down a long, ghost-like corridor.

Two corridors later, I walked through the light-filled breezeway.

I enjoyed passing this patient in the next corridor. She almost always had a roomful of visitors from her familia grande.

My favorite part of the walk was my mini lap around the light-filled lobby.

Before I knew it, I was back in the corridor by my room. Just nine laps to go.

UPDATE: I went in for a complete blood count on Monday and found that my WBCs made a slight rise, my RBCs and hemoglobin are holding steady and my platelets took just a very minor dip since Saturday. To my surprise, I didn't need a platelet transfusion. I'll return for my next appointment on Thursday.

In the meantime, I'm getting lots of rest and feeling more energetic each day. I'm being very careful now about moving from horizontal to vertical to ambulatory. My blood pressure was so low on Sunday that I fainted and cut my finger on the way down. I was on the phone with Cindy and woke up when I heard her pleas of "Mom? Mom? MOM?!? Are you there? MOM!!!"


ntbrad said...

It sounds like you are making excellent progress. From one mantle cell patient to another, keep up the good work. Maybe this time I'll be the one writing you asking how things should be going!!

Brad Williams

Karen C said...

Glad you are feeling better. Are you allowed any food from the "outside world"? It is time again for my annual cookie baking marathon.
Love to you.

suzy keleher said...

Hi Susan, Wow! That fainting spell scares me a bit...did you call the doc? How are you feeling now? So proud of you and your walking...very inspirational. I've been walking more on dry land...love you and praying for you, Suze

Susan Carrier said...

Ahh, Karen, sounds like you've regained the "will to bake." I'm banned from restaurant and take-out food for a few more weeks, but home-made food is a GO.

I did immediately call the Emergency Treatment Center after my fainting spell. Low blood pressure is a common side effect of chemo. Dehydration can exacerbate it. I realized that I needed to be much more vigilant about consuming my 64 oz. of fluid per day.

I was really frightened by the finger cut. At first, it was a gusher, but I applied pressure and the platelets went right to work forming a clot.

Lilli said...

Thanks for the tour. I have to say if a person has to be in a hospital, that building at City of Hope is lovely place to be.

But not nearly as lovely as home, so I'm glad you're doing better. Keep up the rest and fluids -- good reminders for us all!

Anonymous said...

Platelets doing there job..hey that's fantastic! This is just glorious, Susan! Love and prayers as always, Suze

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