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Friday, November 18, 2011

I've Been a Bad Blogger

But I am OK! These past few weeks have included hospitalizations in Visalia in between hospitalizations at Stanford, but the complications were routine, expected, and relatively easy to endure.
Having missed so much time here at Californicancercation, there are anecdotes I'll have to spare, which is a shame. Still, there's a lot coming up in the next few weeks I want my peeps to know about:

Highway 1
  • I survived my last (9th!) chemo before the upcoming transplant. My blood cells and platelets are restoring their numbers, and I'm feeling much physically better.
  • I had two tests with good results: A PET CT scan on Oct 27 and a regular CT scan this past week, both of which confirm that the cancer is continuing to be diminished by the treatment. Thank you everyone for your prayers and good wishes! So anxious was I heading into that PET scan in late October that I memorized the 23rd Psalm in the waiting room so I could recite it during my 40-minutes in the machine. In stories such as mine there is usually a moment where the protagonist breaks down and prays, to whoever they think might be listening. This was my moment. I find the 23rd Psalm to be a very comforting, reassuring prayer, though I prefer to say "I shall dwell in the hills of the Lord forever," rather than house of the Lord. It just seems more appropriate for me.
  • My brother-in-law Samuel H. Clarke is arriving for a visit today, Nov 18. He, Annie and our friend Kelly Brannam will be driving to her cabin on Bass Lake for the weekend. Time for another Fun Cancer Roadtrip! These have become more rare occasions of late. So looking forward to some time spent amongst the trees.
  • Monday Annie and I are dropping Sam off at the airport, then heading over to The Esalen Institute, where we will each receive a fan-fucking-tastic massage, at the glorious Esalen Hot Springs, on the edge of a cliff overlooking the Pacific. 
  • Monday night we will drive to Morro Bay, to visit with my dear friend Abigail Riley and her family.
  • Thursday we will have a home-cooked Thanksgiving, courtesy of my wonderful mother Barbara E Bowman.
  • Friday, November 25, Annie's parents arrive! They will spend a day and night taking in the sights of Visalia (whatever that means) and the next day we will cruise back over to the Central Coast and take them along our favorite drive, the famous Highway 1. They will stay with us as I am admitted to the hospital at Stanford for transplant.
It is important to have all these good times to look forward to, as Monday, Nov 28 I begin preparations for my Haplo-Identical Stem-Cell transplant. My mama, the aforementioned Barbara E., was found to be the most appropriate donor in this still-experimental treatment, and has already gone through the process of having her cells harvested.
I'll get very heavy chemo all that first week, and my new New Birthday, where they administer my mother's stem cells will be December 6. There I shall remain for 30 to 40 days, until mama's cells take root and begin producing the bodily essences I'll need for survival (blood cells, platelets, immune system, etc.) 
I imagine I'll be pretty distracted these next few weeks as I run around California and enjoy my last days of pre-hospital freedom. But I promise to continue the dispatches from the transplant, and beyond. 
Please keep me in your prayers! I am full of hope and optimism about the transplant, but need all the good luck I can get.

In the meantime, enjoy the WEDDING PHOTOS by our official and completely awesome wedding photographer, Sara Acton.


  1. I was just thinking about sending you the 23rd Psalm, as it is what I say to myself in my own troubled moments -- those moments where they say "God will never give you anything you can't handle..." but you wonder how the heck you really will handle them. I replace "he" with "she" myself... And instead of righteousness I learned "she guideth me on straight paths, for her name's sake.." I like the path imagery and the idea of staying true.

    There is another one I memorized that is attributed to St. Patrick. I like it because it is a choosing, a choosing to surround myself in that which is Love, a choosing to see that from others and believe that is what goes befores me and surrounds me. If "Christ" doesn't fit, God, Spirit Love or whomever.whatever you call the power larger than self.

    Christ be with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ be in me.

    Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ on my right, Christ on my left.

    Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, Christ when I arise.

    Christ in the heart of every one who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of every one who speaks of me, Christ in every eye that sees me, Christ in every ear that hears me,

    Today I put on the armor of the Lord.

    Blessings to enjoy these days of family and friends and nature and giving Thanks. A new birthday indeed. How lovely, that the woman who carried you and gave birth to you will again be contributing in such a large way to your new birth. You know I love my sister and that I know she is strong and amazing. Love to you, Annie and all, for the Highest Good.

  2. I know so many heading up to Bass Lake. What kind of a party is cookin' up there?

    So very glad you are able to update your blog with this post full of good news.

  3. Hooray! News from Kia! And pretty good ones, too!! You´re always in my prayers. Wishing you all the strength you need for the upcoming weeks and thinking of you and your loved ones.

  4. Your wedding photos are so beautiful! You make a stunning bride. Sending all my love and good thoughts your way.

  5. I am so glad you're okay! I was getting worried. Thank you for posting your wedding pics. Just beautiful!
    Hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving and that you continue on the road to good health. Sending lots of positive energy your way,