5-06-10

  Lisa was busy at home today keeping things together.  Lucky to have friends Laurie Singer and Donna Hill Howes (all the way from California) come by.  Still, not the same as having my favorite person here.

Status: 8.0/10.   Sleep seems to be the solace for almost everything.  Started my day off feeling good, but late afternoon felt a little chilly and punky.  My temperature rose a little, but not within the range they’d start a fever workup.  My white blood counts have been zero for a number of days now, and it will be perhaps another week before we see them start to come up.  So this is the delicate window where I’m most susceptible to an infection.  Given the multiple antibiotics I’m on, if I do spike a fever they’d culture me and start an anti-fungal drug.  Laurie massaged my feet and seemed to bring me back around.  Can’t say I had a lot of training in reflexology in med school, but I’m not about to start dissing it now.

Events:  Lumbar puncture showed no cells, which is good.  The protein level was higher than normal, which makes them wonder about unseen cells.  They’ll repeat the LP next week (with another dose of Ara-C) and keep checking it until the protein level is normal.

  Medicine has moved to the paradigm of “evidence-based medicine,” in other words, moving away from the anecdotal, “medicine as art” profession and wanting hard data for all decisions.  There is good and bad to that, and not surprising there’s no evidence about what to do about an otherwise normal LP except for a high level of protein (no one has done a controlled study of following patients with and without treatment to see what happens).  I’m sure they’ll err on the side of “let’s be safe and treat you.”

Comments: Donna told me during her kind visit  that reading my blog had made her realize how much more she needed to say, “I love you” to the people she cared for, but like many of us just didn’t express it.  Art Ulene’s comments about the same need brought tears to my eyes.  I guess it takes a good kick in the pants for all of us to be reminded of that.

  Before Lisa and I joined our particular Temple, we would go to High Holiday services for people not formally affiliated with a congregation and held at a High School.  The services were performed by a young rabbi, who didn’t have his own congregation.  Each year he would say, “If you knew you had only 6 months to live, who would you write to?  And what would you say?  And what are you waiting for?”

 Think about that for a long moment.  If I haven’t said it loud enough or often enough to you – I love you.

 -Bruce  

 

 

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18 Responses to “”

  1. Judy and Larry Says:

    Wow, Bruce. Very thoughtful blog tonight. Thanks for reminding us that we all need to let the people we love know that we do a lot more often. We continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers. We love you, too.
    Love, Judy and Larry

  2. Donna Hill Howes Says:

    Our dear Bruce,
    I’m sorry to hear that the afternoon brought you some “punky” moments!
    And I could have learned something from Laurie’s foot massage technique….sorry I missed that.
    Most of all, it was just GRAND to look into your wonderful eyes and see that same twinkle as always….
    What a joy it was to witness remarkable YOU. Note to fellow bloggers….Bruce really DOES look great. In fact, if he were not attached to an IV pole, you would never guess that he’s been in the battle of his lifetime!
    Bruce, thanks for the engaging hour we spent today….
    I love you and Lisa so very much.
    Donna

  3. wendy Says:

    B- when I think of the people who aren’t so nice- I say to myself, how many 9/11’s would we have to have to learn the lesson…Cause I so vividly remember those who jumped holding hands and the news reports about people who got voice mail/ answering machine messages from their loved ones trapped in the bldg or on the plane going down, fully aware they’d never make it out alive..leaving a final I love you….instead of being able to talk directly to those the loved…and so I add an I love you as well… to the army of people who are cheering you on

    P.S. Jennifer – Katie’s sistee does acupunture etc… check that all out..

  4. joel steinberg Says:

    A little Ara-C intrathecal can’t hurt. I was a witness to the immortal “Ace of Spades” trick. Yes indeed, it actually happened. And I always thought there was really an explanation. Go figure. Hang tough, Bruce. You are in our thoughts every day. Joel and Margaret S.

  5. Tom Toftey Says:

    And love to you too, Bruce, on a late Thursday night! So, so glad good friend Donna could visit with you today. If I could hop over to Johns Hopkins quickly, I’d wash my hands repeatedly too, my friend!

    Keep that positive attitude alive and kicking, that infectious smile on your face, and that love in your heart.

  6. Laurie Samuels Says:

    Bruce-

    Saying “I love you” is hard for some people but like most anything else in life… the more one practices this short three word sentence, the easier it gets. I have found it is so easy that I find myself telling friends “I love you”. Sometimes it just slips right out. Then I realize it what I have said and I have surprised even myself but it is the heart speaking…. it’s nice.

  7. sheldan Says:

    Bruce,

    I am curious about the High Holiday services you mentioned. As you may know, I lived in the Washington area (Silver Spring) for 6 1/2 years. I seem to remember such a service for unaffiliated Jews in the area, but I don’t recall where they met.

    I went to Congregation Har Tzeon-Agudath Achim in the Silver Spring-Wheaton area. A really nice Conservadox (affiliated with Conservative but with a lot of Orthodox members) congregation, and I remember it well.

    Sheldon

  8. Hope Dan Says:

    Feel my love foe you so deeply, my first born, can’t write about it tonite. Just have to let the tears flow a bit.

  9. sheldan Says:

    Bruce,

    And thanks for the reminder to show love to the ones you’re close to!

    Sheldon

  10. Lynn Oliver Says:

    Why are we such dolts that we need to be reminded of this? Thank you, Bruce. Love, Lynn

  11. Wally Schlech Says:

    Well said pal – love to you both.
    When all this is over take a holiday to Porto, Portugal where I’m communing with fellow listeria geeks for the week. Wonderful medieval city with a small town feel and cobblestone streets – cheap too with the euro going down the tubes!

  12. Susan and Larry Says:

    Bruce Everyday is special.Enjoy each and everyone with your lovely family.When in a situation like this,everyday things take on different meanings.We appreciate little and everyting. You will soon see the many friends and family you have rooting for you.I have been in two separate health bouts.Saying I love you to my friend and family comes easier at this time.Bruce we all love you.Larry

  13. Donna Hill Howes Says:

    Most of us read Mitch A’s book, “Tuesdays with Morrie”…..Your blogs are everybit as insightful and ever so inspiring, and with a medical twist, to boot….
    I propose a new offering to the masses, and since I had a fantastic Thursday with you yesterday….I’d recommend “Thursdays with Bruce”!
    Smile all day, you are so loved.
    HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY to the amazing LISA!!
    XO
    Donna

  14. Kathy Says:

    I love you, too!
    Keep up your wonderful spirits. YOu’re doing such a good job of that.
    XO
    Kathy

  15. Gail Lehmann Says:

    Bruce,
    You and Lisa have been very special for me since I “discovered” my cousin Lisa on ABC News 15 years ago. Life has a way of bringing people into our lives who enrich it and you are one. Mark and I are rooting for you and know you will fight the best you can.
    Love,
    Gail

  16. John Seng Says:

    Hey, Bruce, all the love in the world to you, too! I’m in Paris now through Sunday on work. What can I bring you back?

    Hang in there. John

  17. Bill Schaffner Says:

    Hi Bruce:

    Here’s my favorite story today.

    You’ve heard about our flood, of course. One of the low-lying places hardest hit was the Opry Mills shopping center out by Opryland. The Aquarium Restaurant was one of the theme restaurants at the shopping center. Pretty spectacular, it had room-sized huge aquariums with a variety of truly exotic marine life, including a sting ray. Parents loved it even more than the kids for whom it was created. And, I’m told the food wasn’t bad.

    So, along comes the flood which destroys the aquariums, releasing the fish. Most die quickly, especially the salt water species. But, not all died, according to our local ABC news channel: the released piranha were swimming through the flooded mall and parking lot! Looking for lunch, apparently.

    Great story – I spread it far and wide. Actually, it reminded me of you during your Chicago Channel 7 days. I recall you showing me a clip of you reporting the news while up to at least your knees in some flood water.

    Unfortunately, the piranhas were too good to be true. Well, it gave us a smile during a difficult time. Hope it gives you a smile, too. And you can put those waders away for another day; along with your admonition that reporters need to confirm the facts before they go on-camera.

    Cheer,

    Bill

  18. Johnny & Lake Says:

    Dear Bruce,
    Your blog – and this entry in particular – is the exemplar of the great human spirit in the face of adversity and, not to put to fine a point on it, war. I wanted to reply to this immediately, but time stretched to 26 hours as your gentle words reverberated throughout the day and night, and of course have continued to do so. Hannah Arendt once asked ‘what is the condition of the human condition’? What makes one ‘human’? Her answer was that it was Doubt — the ability to question, be curious, ‘suppose that it could be otherwise’ and then come up with what ‘that otherwise’ might look like. But you have made it clear: she didn’t quite go far enough with that answer. For the real condition of the human condition is Love, and you are the very embodiment of that Love.
    We love you, Bruce, with all our heart and soul
    xxxxx Johnny and Lake

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