Day +1492: “… but if you close your eyes, …”

“…does it almost feel like …
… nothing changed at all? …
… and if you close your eyes, …
… does it almost feel like …
… you’ve been here before? …
… how am I gonna be an optimist about this? …”

Happy New Year 2015!

” … just another day, just another day, just another day. …
… lost in the city of angels …
… just another day, just another day, just another day. …
… cause they got, they got, they got a spell on me …
… just another day, just another day, just another day. …”

Ok, aside from the traditional New Year’s greetings, those of you who have followed Karen’s tale on this site should be aware or cautioned that the “tag line” song lyrics tend to reflect the mood of the day – the ordinary, mundane day, day-to-day, day. I’m not going to chronicle 2014. Let’s just summarize it as life marching on (good thing), spiked by a large number of events, not all medical, that fall into the “it sucked” category (bad things), contrasted by some moments of pure joy (ho hum things – oops, sorry I meant: good things).

NEWS FLASH: Internet Curse or Panacea? Well, neither, but you’ve got to go through another tag line first and catch the news of the 11 line report.

” … it’s a thief in the night …
… to come and grab you …
… it can creep up inside you …
… and consume you …
… A disease of the mind …
… It can control you …
… It’s too close for comfort …”

Welcome back. In November, Karen rolled past the four-year mark of her BMT and two years past the throat cancer distraction, and now is only bothered by GvHD, which among other things, randomly impacts her eyes to the point to make the four letters in the big red octagonal sign at the intersections of life melt away from view. Mantra: Life is good; quality of life, just like in quality of a Chevy or anything, is subjective.

“… I told her put an extra layer on …
… I know what happens when she drinks Patrón …
… Her closet’s missing half the things she’s bought ….
… Yeah, Tequila (GvHD) makes her clothes fall off …”

GvHD part two. Karen’s skin GvHD is primarily impacting her abdomen, shoulders, and back so that on given days, clothes are painful, and a bra mimics the confines of a medieval iron maiden (Yes, we like to provide visuals, and yes there was an iron maiden before Iron Maiden).

So, for those who fail to see the link to the internet, here is the rub. The ability to research and acquire data to understand, comprehend, or rationalize cancer is now only clicks away. But, data is not information. The context of what worked, how, and the why(s) are still as mysterious as when humanity thought bleeding a person was a good treatment for most everything. This is not to say the availability of information is bad, just that, in many ways, it is simply limited to a single point in time about a singular event. Parallels are there, but the approaches, just like the views of the major hospitals on treatment and post-treatment fail to converge. So what is the answer?

“… every Sunday’s getting more bleak…
… a fresh poison each week …
…’we were born sick,’ you heard them say it…
… my church offers no absolutes…”

Philosophy teaches that one can’t argue with faith. So, for those who find comfort and hope there, great for them! Any edge in the battle with cancer is a positive. Attitude is not everything, but it helps. However, personally, I can’t lock onto that. It flows in my mind along the same lines as describing a child or youth as “lucky” because they got cancer earlier in life vice having an ordinary childhood or leading a young adult life without the stimulus of chemo, hospitals, surgeries, and other nightmares made real and mundane. So let’s all stop here for now: Dante’s subterranean tower level six – seven is down there, but hell can wait for another year.

“… when she’s lonely and the longing gets too much…
… she sends a cable comin’ in from above…
… don’t need no phone at all…”

So back to the exposé on the internet. The ability to find fellow travelers and draw comfort and gain advice from their experiences, which often are more on the practical than medical side is simply super. This extended family is not without perils to the emotions. Karen and I are wishing and hoping that Mike and Deb, going through another round of BMT now, have 2015, 2016 and beyond to say wow – 2014 was scary but we made it. Karen also posts in memoriam; the hardest are the posts of people who then suddenly vanish, glimpses into the most personal piece of someone’s life with no archeological clues from which to draw conclusions. Just a void remains.

So with sparkling rays of optimism, I’ll finish with a non-song tagline for your entertainment.

“… My God…I’ve heard a rant like this before.”
“… What did you say?…”
“… I said I’ve heard a rant like this before…”

“You sound like the Morningstar”

The ramblings of a fool sound wiser if you picture Morgan Freeman talking (Visual).

Cheers. Best wishes for 2015.

Tag Lines

  • Day +1461: You and Me, Julie Andrews and Robert Preston in Victor/Victoria (IDed by Chris and Leslie)
  • Day +1461: Somewhere Out There, Fievel in An American Tail (IDed by Chris)
  • Day +1471: Long Time Gone, Crosby, Stills, and Nash (IDed by Cathy and Debbie)
  • Day +1479: I’ve Got You Under My Skin, Cole Porter, popularized by Frank Sinatra (IDed by Heather)
  • Day +1479: Like the Weather, 10,000 Maniacs (IDed by Cathy as Here’s That Rainy Day, Frank Sinatra – close but not quite)
  • Day +1490: The Near Future, Irving Berlin (IDed by Cathy; variations by many others noted by Chris)

    1. I count seven taglines in this post! That’s a lot! And of course I do not know any of them. I hope others post their answers. I am posting my answers now so you finish the year with a successful tagline contest entry. I think it is sad when you don’t get any answers. And Michael you did a good job summing up the year. We love you guys. Take care! And we hope you have a great 2015!!!

      Caitlin Crosby-Just Another Day
      Joe Nichols-Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off
      Hozier-Take Me to Church
      Golden Earring-Radar Love
      Movie-“Dogma”-Matt Damon & Ben Affleck

    2. Happy New Year Cathy and David! Thank you for checking in on us.

    3. Hi kids merry new year. Life is flying at warp speed.
      we are all doing okay here with small bleeps from the boys
      and large bleeps from me. Getting old ain’t for sissies!
      One of my friends use to say that. I lost 3 this year and
      already have 3 in the not too far away wings. Glad to hear
      you two are doing……well. been following your tale but
      haven’t gotten any tags and had little time since Sept
      to blink. Hope to see you at joeys bar and grill in 2015.
      best wishes xoxo

    4. We So wish that the GVHD would behave a little more while still keeping you protected from the ‘big bad bear.’

      For now we’ll go with your sentiment of 2014 being scary and look forward to many mores years ahead! You are right that the internet can be wonderful when it provides some practical tips and maybe inspiration, but it also reminds us that there are setbacks and work to be done in battling this disease. Thanks for the encouraging words 🙂

      Lots of love and best wishes for a healthier New Year,
      Mike and Debbie

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