Monday, March 09, 2009

An Unwanted Journey: Day 1205 - Just an update


As my wife reminds me occasionally, not everyone who reads my blog regularly wants to delve into reflections on community, news stories about cancer therapies and statistics, books I'm reading or dozens of other esoteric themes. Some simply want to an answer to a simple question - "How are you doing now?"

The question is similar to how Twitter advertises itself these days - "What are you doing now?" Twitter is a service which works much like a short-and-sweet blog that answers that question with messages of 140 characters or less.

So, one way to satisfy those who want to know "how" I'm doing is to incorporate a gadget in my blog with Twitter Updates. In fact, that's what I plan on doing. I'll use my Twitter account for all kinds of things, one of which will be quick daily answers about how I'm doing and any other short messages about my medical or emotional condition.

You can see the updates in the side bar just below the section About Me. If you're a Twitter fan, there is also a hyperlink allowing you to become my follower, which means that your own Twitter account will be linked to mine thereby allowing you to access my messages on whatever application or device you choose which supports the Twitter application interface.

So what's the answer anyway?

Sleepy and a little off balance. I have to assume that my need for more naps and sleep is connected to the new breakthrough pain medication I'm taking. I've replaced my morphine with hydromorphone. At the same time, I've noticed that my balance isn't quite as good as it was before. Otherwise, there doesn't appear to be any other major change. I've had a few more nightmares, but I don't know for sure that it is related to the medication.

For whatever reason, despite the fact that my legs look a lot better these days (most of the edema is gone leaving my legs about the size they were before edema and blood clots), the itchiness and rashes continue to come and go. In fact, I will often awaken in the middle of the night only to find my hands on my legs scratching away. I've taken to wearing cotton gloves to prevent doing too much damage.

My wife and I are also talking more about memorial service planning. One day last week, on a beautiful, sunny day, she went to a local funeral home to get information and tour the facilities. Because of what we discovered, she will likely decide to have the memorial service at their facilities, followed by a reception upstairs. The services they offer are extensive and the costs quite reasonable. But it still feels odd doing this kind of planning at my age, especially when physically I'm feeling not too bad this week. Still, it's good to have some time to talk with her about these issues, to defuse some of the emotion attendant to funeral planning and to get some decisions made and set aside.

I feel mentally and emotionally stable today. I'm reading a wide variety of material, watching some good sports on TV, and enjoying favourite murder mystery series on DVD. So the world is a pleasant enough place.

For more details, stay tuned for rtfax tweets...


ken coe said...

Twitter, Face book, someone in my face or whatever: these new age things are a challenge to many of us post war types. I just got used to the idea of "blog", and that seemed to be a stretch, and now...up to the minute, quick and sundry narratives--too much, too fast, too beyond my remaining brain cells.

So I will just continue to read your story and appreciate the information that you provide: sometimes overwhelming, always informative...please keep the story going.

Poetically, perhaps Dylan Thomas' description of that good night better describes matters of importance than Eliot's hollow man.

As always, my best wishes to you and yours.

Don Spencer said...

Hey Ken.

I'm sticking with my choice of dreary poetry excerpts to describe how I often feel in the evenings these days. But for those who want to remind themselves of Dylan's offering - will get them there.

I guess it's all relative. I often feel like I'm falling further and further behind the main stream Internet fanatics. Social media is still pretty new to many people, but just about anyone with a story to tell these days is finding utility in Flickr, Facebook, and Twitter.

To give you an idea, I've just started following Malcolm Gladwell on Twitter. But you can follow just about any journalist or media outlet you like using social media to help you filter their message.

Another one of my favorites is Freakonomics. Whenever a short blurb is published, it's automatically pushed to me to investigate or ignore as I please. For example, the most recent tweet asks the question, "Will the Fictional Mormons Influence the Real Ones?" referencing a piece about HBO's Big Love and its affect on the Mormon community.

I say, whatever works for you in slogging through the crap and finding the treasure.

Now...back to USC and Arizona State...