Thursday, July 1, 2010

#210: A Good Day to be Pennsy

Waffle Man and his radioactive forehead... What my
gorgeous wife sees in him, I will never understand.
Oh, how I love a new day. Last night was the worst nausea I have had since starting treatment. Just awful. Lost a whole can of Ensure. Blech. This morning, I feel like a million bucks. I got up, fed myself through the tube, Mrs P ground up my pills into a slurry and shot them into the hose as well, then I went in and fixed my own magic swizzle, (thanks Kim B for that wonderful name.) Radiation was a breeze. I even got a great new Waffle Man picture after my treatment. The doc has cleared me for chemo on Saturday. All systems are go.

The only fly in the ointment today was my weight. I've dropped another four pounds since Monday morning. That's not good, and the docs are sure to give me hell for it. The thing is, I feel so great right now, I'm not really worried about it. I just keep eating as much as I can shove through the PEG tube. That's the only option right now. I can still swallow fluids with a tolerable amount of pain, but everything I drink is creamy and coats my throat. That triggers the choking that leads to gagging that leads to... well, you know.

Bet you can't stay mad...
Jake pulled a neat trick today. He came in from his morning constitution smelling like sewage. When he turned his head, I could see he was wearing something nasty like war paint on his left cheek. He had rolled in something and rubbed it all up and down the side of his face. Mrs P mercifully took him out on the back porch to scrub him off. If I had a pressure washer, I would have blasted him with it. Good thing he's so cute. That smile gets him out of a lot of trouble. He may have learned that trick from his papa.

I started reading Around the World in Eighty Days last night. Actually, Jim Dale was reading. I was listening. I've never done books on CD before, but this was a gift from a friend. Reading isn't always easy for me right now. I have trouble staying focused on the page and my hands are shaking a little bit from the muscle/nerve damage the surgery did, I think. Listening to a good story is a great solution and Jim Dale is a wonderful actor. We saw him many years ago at the old Roundabout Theatre on 17th street in a very silly English musical called Privates on Parade. It was about a bunch of guys in the army, but the title also referred to a shower scene featuring naked actors parading their privates around. It was no Barnum, but great fun nonetheless. And you don't pass up a chance to see one of the great Broadway musical performers, no matter what the material.

My dear friend Mary called me yesterday on a break between rehearsal and performance. She and I played Higgins and Eliza a couple of years ago. She is still gorgeous. Easy to see which of us is the ham bone and which was headed for a career on Broadway. She has made a real acting career for herself. She's playing in Phantom, raising a beautiful little girl, and is married to a criminally handsome dancer. We talked for the first time in twenty years and it was as if no time had passed at all. What a pleasure to reconnect with a friend who is living the dream. I have such respect and admiration for her. I'm a afraid I may have gushed a bit. So what. She's earned it.

Note the fake sideburns.
Couldn't grow my own yet.
And speaking of beautiful actors, my friend Cynthia posted some ancient photos of us in all our high school glory. She has also remained unforgivably gorgeous in spite of the years. Back when she was Cindy, we played Arthur and Guinevere in Camelot. We also played together in Fiddler, Godspell, Jesus Christ Superstar, and I can still hear her in Hair singing "Good Morning Starshine." Hard to believe people are still dragging these old war horses out and thinking they're on the cutting edge. We were doing them back at Keystone Oaks High School back in 19 something-something. And none of us was better this fair queen.

But of all the leading ladies I've been blessed to know, there's none compares to Mrs P. Last night when I was so sick, she brought me a cool drink, wiped my forehead, gave me my medicine, and stayed beside me until I could rest and sleep. Mum insisted on taking this picture the night before they took my teeth out. I may never have that smile again, but I will always smile when I thank God for my beautiful bride.

So it's a good day to be Pennsy. Good morning. Good memories. A dog who doesn't stink anymore. Nice all around. What a fool I was to wait for cancer to realize how much I love these wonderful people, and how much they love me.

Don't you make the same mistake.



  1. This made me a little embarrassed, but also made me smile. : )

  2. CC, I can ask for no more...b


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