Just before the new semester was to begin, we kept a scheduled appointment with Mike’s oncologist.
She had ordered a scan in mid-December; we collectively decided that we’d wait until after the holidays to ‘review the results.’ We’ve followed this protocol before. Unspoken: why risk ruining the celebration? So we put it out of our minds (not really) until today.
How many times have we sat, tense, in the examining room, I on my chair and Mike on the table? How many times have we exchanged banter with the nurse, the nurse who KNOWS but will not say? How many times have we greeted the doctor and then eyed her as she flips through the reports, making notes?
Today was……I forget. Often enough that the choreography is the same. We lean forward and she speaks. So far, the tension has been broken by a broad physician smile and good (no) news. Today: we lean, she eyes, she looks up.
“Looks good, Mike. Those two areas that we were concerned about…they have been resolved.”
What does this mean? That nasty Gemzar is poisoning the cancer. Is it gone? No. Is it still small? Yes. What should we do?
Keep living your life.
Doctor says that Mike can take this medicine chronically, on and on as long as it causes no problems, or bearable problems. Doctor says that Mike should add a few things to his bucket list.
Doctor suggests that if Mike wants to take a chemo vacation, that would be fine.
SO: Mike will continue to build the boat and the kayak. He will be playing his guitar in church. He will hold court at The Brick. And, of course, he’ll teach his classes at Ivy Tech Community College.
I’ll be back at Kokomo High School, passing on the wisdom.
We’ll be loving life, loving each other, and loving our Father. God has a few more things for Mike to do, I’m sure.