Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 6:41PM
Well, I made it to and through Round 50, and I did it smoothly and successfully. I feel like the utter joy emanating from my room at Norris helped boost my body’s strength while I was infusing, and that positive energy that I felt from my family and friends continued to buoy me throughout the week. Honestly, it was one of the best rounds of chemo I’ve had, and I attribute that directly to all the love and support I was feeling. It’s a weird kind of excitement to barrel through one’s 50th round of chemo, but it’s excitement nonetheless. To recap Monday’s chemo adventure: infusion went well, I had a blast with my crew (my parents, Will, and my friends Jordan, Stoney, and Dan, Dr. Lenz, Taline, and all my nurse buddies in the day hospital), and my bloodwork numbers are looking solid. After over two and a half years of almost non-stop treatment, it’s pretty clear that I am maintaining my health. My health is not declining. My body is strong and resilient…and after 50 rounds of chemo, 3 surgeries, and 10 rounds of radiation, that feels pretty great. My time at Norris was made even more memorable because I was being followed around by three cameras. One belonged to Jordan, who created The Wunder Project video and is always on hand to catch important moments in my life. The other two belonged to my friend Adam, who is shooting a documentary called Pursuing Happiness. While I guzzled my chemo, I talked with Adam about my approach to beating the hell out of cancer and how my perspective on life has changed as a result of my diagnosis and everything that has followed. And, in case you want to know, here’s how my perspective has changed. Things that annoy or upset some or even most people just don’t really affect me. I don’t live in a world with daily aggravations or annoyances. These things just don’t register with me. The big things still hurt me, obviously: losing a loved one, seeing someone I love being hurt, seeing injustice and brutality in the world. Of course, I still care deeply about those things and I work my butt off to make them right as much as I can. But the lesser things – the traffic jams, the rude people you may bump into (or, more likely, bump into you), a little leak in skylight portion of my roof. Yeah, I don’t really care. So my blood pressure rarely goes up, I’m generally pretty chilled out, and because of that, I’m relaxed enough to appreciate the beauty around me even if that beauty is in the shape of seeing a person laugh or sing in their car as I’m bumper to bumper on the 101 Freeway. I bounced back from chemo relatively quickly this time around, fully resuming my normally-scheduled activities by Thursday. I am always grateful by my body’s ability to tolerate this aggressive regimen. I guess my old bag of bones wants to survive as much as my mind and spirit do. And that’s a blessing, and one that I’m constantly aware of and for which I am deeply grateful. Moving on to the next frontier: Round 51!