Please note this contains more graphic personal details and I would encourage you not to read on if not comfortable. There is nothing dignified about this part. Due to repeated unsuccessful efforts to reintroduce ports imbedded in my skin to help deliver my medication we moved on to plan "b" which is an external pump connected by tubing in my leg that steadily deposits a new medication that makes me even more sleepy than before. It weighs about a pound and is awkward to carry around...but necessary at this moment. The down side is just how groggy it makes me feel - how slow my reactions have become. Case in point - early the other morning when I had to go to the bathroom and by the time this message was received in my brain it was almost too late. Hence, like a three year old, there was an accident - something that is on the list of what to expect in the final stages - but beyond humiliating. Again my sister was right there to come to the rescue....to gently do what she needed to do to soothe my tears, fix the bedding and me. These are not stories one wants to share and yet it is part of this territory that is unavoidable at this point. There have been more and more visits from the unique swat team know as the Palliative Response Team who respond to more short term crises. They are all equally amazing, Carol...Jill...so many beautiful nurses and counsellors who offer myself and my family treatment and the most compassionate care in equal measure. I have no more words to describe the power of how they heal me with their presence.
On the down side, due to the many unsuccessful efforts to find tissue on my limbs strong enough to withstand butterfly ports through which to administer some of the other medications I have developed a number of abscesses that are failing to heal. Antibiotics have become unavoidable now and the prospect of a move to a hospice bed where the meds can be delivered intravenously drawing closer. I am ready in many ways...the stairs in our multi-level townhome becoming more burdensome and the toll on my family who are caring for me night and day - clearly not sustainable. So not the best of times but how grateful can one be for the angels who surround me - who would do anything at any time to spare me distress. There is no degree of thanks that seems adequate and whatever burdens I face - I know they pale in comparison to so many - that I am rich with the love and care that surrounds me - and that is really all one needs to know.