Day 8 – Even the best days can start badly.

2017-12-06 19.26.03
Day 8 1 week out of treatment

6:15 am headache – quietly slip out of bed and steal into the kitchen to warm up my hot packs, take some aspirin and return to the bed where Kathy’s alarm had just gone off.  I quickly disabled mine, crawled under the sheets and blankets, placed my hot packs, and snuggled up to make a sleepy agreement to remain in bed for 15 minutes.  WooooHooooo!  It takes so little anymore to make me happy – especially when it comes to sleepy snuggling with my bestest girl!  Headache abated we rose to face the day.  I had hydration and she had to go to work.

Before I left the house I reheated the hot packs and used an ace bandage to put them on my arm to raise the veins and it worked!  Emily was able to tap in on the first try.   I cannot believe how much better I feel this week.  Epson salt and baking soda soaks, getting in the calories and fluids, the extra sleep and hydration who know what worked, but I’m keeping it up.  Lunch was another variety of half sandwiches, ensure for a snack and cream of chicken soup and a grilled cheese for dinner.  The soup kinda resembled an herbed wallpaper paste and the sandwich was kind blah but it was solid food!

I have kind of avoided this topic, but what the hell – SMOKING!  Yes I quit before treatment, but it is the most insidious drug that I have ever encountered.  I made the mistake at about age 16 of being one of the cool kids and picked them up. Over the next 45 years I have been involved in this love – hate relationship with the demon tobacco.  Several times I laid them down for 8 years,  5 years, 2 days, you smokers know the drill.  But I always made the stupid mistake of picking one up thinking I could get away with it this time, only to find myself back to a half to three quarters of a pack within a week.  I know with all of my being that picking up the first drink will lead to my death and will go to any length to avoid that drink.  I inherently know that smoking will do the same thing, but I cannot seem to develop the same fervor or desire to give it up – I am in denial and addicted.  You don’t know how good it made me feel to hear that my cancer was not caused by smoking – ah ha take that! It was then explained that my chances of re-occurrence would be greatly increased if I didn’t quit, so I did.  That does not make me want them any less.  I could get in the car, go to the store and buy a pack tonight, but I’m not going to do it.  Non-smokers, public service announcement – no amount of encouragement, shaming, threats, tips or attempts to make it harder are going to deter a smoker from smoking. We will go to any lengths to smoke.  They have to make that decision on their own.  We all know the risks, it would take being deaf, dumb and blind not to know the hazards – the addiction overrides the knowledge.   Okay – enough, I got it off my chest I hope it helps deter me from making the same mistake again.

Hey I did make it to the shop for a couple of hours today!  Just mostly cleaned up but I was out there and I am grateful to feel good enough to do it!  OK, It’s time to soak so I bid you adieu and wish you a peaceful night – Thanks for letting me rant I do feel better.


LESSON OF THE DAY – Don’t ever pick up another cigarette! – Don Penny

Author: Don

Hi my name is Don Penny I am a professional woodturner in Jacksonville, FL. I was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic squamous cell carcinoma in 3 lymph nodes and the base of the tongue and this is my story of day to day life while fighting cancer.

2 thoughts on “Day 8 – Even the best days can start badly.”

  1. Amen on the cigs, Bud!! One morning almost 29 years ago I was having my morning cig (3+ packs a day, so I had to start early to make sure I got all 3 packs smoked!) when a coworker walked by the smoking room. I saw him stop, back up, take a deep breath, open the door just a crack and say, “Bob, can you come see me when you get finished?” Well, that just didn’t seem right, so I quit and haven’t had a single cig or cigar since that moment. Funny how God talks to us sometimes.

    I think maybe God is talking to you right now, only in a much louder voice than he did with me!!!


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