Back to Life, Back to Reality
May 2, 2002, Memorial Hospital, New York
It felt like the clock striking midnight on Cinderella at
two glorious weeks in Hawaii, we had the experience of reliving
our pre-cancer lives. We dropped right into our old
rhythm, staying in our old neighborhood, revisiting favorite
haunts, visiting with old friends--feeling as though we'd never
left. It was all so familiar, so comfortable, so right. No
doctors, no appointments, just sun and beach and love and
I had lots of energy, invigorated by the tropical air, and
we began to dream of how we could make a real return someday.
Then it came time to leave. Just like that, the glass slipper
Beginning with the long flight home, I didn't feel right.
The trip had upset my delicate diet routine, and as the flight
dragged on, I grew increasingly nauseous. I hadn't weighed
myself the entire trip, and when I got home, I found I had
lost five more pounds, bringing me down to 30 percent below
my pre-surgery weight. A CT scan the next week showed more
tumor growth, despite my having continued chemotherapy during
We took a trip to Chicago to investigate a highly recommended
alternative cancer center near Northwestern University, the
Block Medical Center. After spending a day there hearing about
their treatment ideas, we decided to sign on with their program,
even staying an extra day to get started on some preliminary
procedures. We returned to New York awaiting insurance clearance
so we could get going in earnest.
But alas, there's been a complication. I'm back at Memorial
Hospital after checking into the emergency room Monday night
with severe abdominal pain. The docs say I've got a bowel obstruction,
but as of yet haven't located where. I told them I don't intend
for this to be the end, and they agree that I shouldn't be
leaving here in a box. But I'll probably be hospitalized for
several days while they sort things out. In the meantime, I
continue to scratch and claw my way along, fully intending
to pull out of this slump and get on the upswing.
My mind and spirits remain good, it's just my body I've got
to bring up to the same level. I doggedly believe it can be
done. After all, didn't Cinderella overcome her travails to
marry the Prince and live happily ever after?
Believe with me and we'll make it real.