Late to 68

.: It’s later in the day than when I usually post on my birthday, this one being #68. I typically write up something around 01:05 hrs, which is when I was born on 28 June 1953 in Winnipeg MB.

This year has provided much upon which to reflect. The biggest change in my life was learning in early March 2021 that I had developed non-Hodgkin B-cell follicular lymphoma – cancer – and that I needed almost immediate treatment to fight it. It took an ultrasound, CT scan, and biopsy to confirm everything. During this period my abdomen started accumulating fluid to the point that I had to be “drained” three separate times totalling 12 litres of said abdominal fluid. In one instance I lost 14 pounds in one day.

Anyway, chemotherapy and monoclonal antibodies treatments began in mid-March, and thankfully my system started to respond almost immediately. I stopped accumulating fluid and the tumours started shrinking. I lost at least 25 pounds, reaching my lowest weight in over 50 years. Since then, I have had four sets of treatments, and am doing very well. Next up is a 06 July CT scan, consultation with the oncologist, and the fifth round of treatments in mid-July. Following that will be one more set of treatments in mid-August, and then another CT scan in September. Beyond that, I don’t know what happens next. My father, who passed away on 12 February 2020, had a version of non-Hodgkin lymphoma and lived another 31 years after diagnosis. Recently I’ve started working with a personal trainer again, and I plan to continue indefinitely. We are currently in the midst of a record-breaking heat wave. When the scorching temperatures start dropping I will resume cardio workouts on my upright cycle in my basement. Right now it’s just too hot to do anything.

These past twelve months have also seen me do a lot of work managing Mom’s affairs from afar, as she lives in Winnipeg and I am in Edmonton. She has reached the stage where she may no longer be able to live on her own in her assisted-living complex, and will probably need to be moved to long-term care. I will then need to go to Winnipeg to begin the process of vacating the contents of her apartment.

Earlier this year my musical partner, Sarah, moved to Coleman AB to begin work as an elementary school principal. As such, my performing days have slowed to a standstill. I find I miss it in little bits here and there, and I am not playing much at home. I guess when the spirit moves me, I pick up a guitar and noodle around a bit.

So here we go again for another revolution around the sun. Special shout out to Mr Steve Forty, who somehow always seems to read my birthday posts before anyone else does!

Oh, I almost forgot – GO HABS GO!

Have a great year, everyone, and thanks for being a part of my life.

2 Responses to “Late to 68”

  1. Steve Forty Says:

    I really hope your treatments work, and that you can get out and play your music some more. I have just read this today, which is June 30, I forgot to look on June 28 which I usually do. You have been a good friend over the years, so I try to remember to check in to see how everything is going. I was sorry to hear about your father, and that your mother is needing more care. My mother was two months short of one hundred when she passed away in 2019 so I know how hard losing a parent is. I hope to get up to Edmonton and hope to visit all my friends there in the next two years.
    Steve

  2. Shannon Says:

    So sorry to hear of your diagnosis. I hope you have had good news since your birthday. Big hug!

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