First Day

The first day was Monday.  Drove down earlier in the day for the 8:45 AM appointment with almost no idea what would happen.

When you get to the cancer clinic, they give you a card to scan in so the nurses know you are there.  They call your name or come get you and you go back to the radiation room.

When I went down earlier, they measured me for the “radiation mask”.  (huh?)

They fit it over your face and strap it to the table so your head and neck won’t move.  Then the radiation machine rotates around your head and whirls and clicks and beams radiation at you.

I swear I was expecting Auric Goldfinger to come out and say, “I expect you to die!”

The process lasts about 20 minutes.  They play music while you are in there.  My first day the nurses asked me what kind of music I liked and I responded with Classic Rock so they put Journey on.  Really?  I found a Jimmy Buffett CD in their stack so we have since settled on that.

After that, K and I went over to check into the “Hope Lodge”.  This is a place for out-of-town cancer patients to stay, for free, during their treatment.  It was originally sponsored by Winn Dixie but I am not sure WHAT happened but when I took the tour, the girl showing me around made it a point to let me know that Winn Dixie DOES NOT SPONSOR THEM ANYMORE.  I sensed some ill will and unresolved issues.

They have 48 rooms that are broken up to a small sitting area and a bedroom with two twin beds.  Most patients have a caregiver with them so they get the extra bed.  There are no TV’s in the room because they want the patients to get out and about.  There is internet but only hardlined to the wall.  They have a huge kitchen area with refrigerators and freezers for people to bring and cook their own stuff. They also have a 9pm curfew.  So as I was talking to the Asst Director and she told us this, I asked if I were at a movie or out to eat, then is after 9pm ok?  She didn’t smile and told me that at 9pm they lock the doors and if I were late, I would have to work it out with the night security and they may or may not let me in.  Oooooooo K.  (I think they are serious about that 9am thing.)

After the tour and check in, on to the grocery store and by then it was time for another treatment.  When the radiation treatments are over, it feels like you have been riding in a back seat for an hour or two.

Next up….Fun with Chemo!

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12 thoughts on “First Day

  1. Our thoughts and prayers are with you Michael. You got this. Love you cuz!!

  2. Michael, ole buddy, I am so sorry to hear you are going through this ordeal. I will be praying that your treatment goes well and that you have a speedy recovery. God bless you!!

  3. With the 9 pm curfew, are you sure you are not in the dorm at Co-Lin in the 50′s? This is SOOO000ooo making me feel better, to know what you are doing – NOT KNOWING and imagining is so much worse than the real time events – luvu, Mikey —

  4. Hang tough and try to keep your sense of humor. You can beat this thing!

  5. Hey Michael, can you have a beer?

    • Jim,They want me to lay off drinking with all the chemicals running around my body. On the plus side, they did prescribe morphine pills. Not sure if I should use them or sell them!

      • JIm: No worries about Fin and beer. He and I had plenty rooming together at the trailer park back in our salad years at that fine institution of higher learner known by all as The University of Southern Mississippi. My guess is that there may still be a bit of beer lingering in his body chemistry and if not, we will take care of it when he is done with this. Fin, you are the man Brother and there are strong arms around you. This is not to be compared with running through doors and dodging bullets, so get this done. Love you Brother!

  6. Michael, your writing is good…did you get a Masters at the Southern Miss Center for Writers…oh, no, that was the other Finley kid. Now I remember. Well, you are giving her a run for the money!

    I will be interested to hear about the others you are sharing the kitchen with. I would also buy all the damn ice cream I could right now. Yum! You’ll end up losing weight so dig in now to all the brownies, pizza and cheetos you desire, dude.

    I am proud of you for figuring out how to blog. I’ll next be expecting movie reviews, TV series commentary and your own hashtag of course.

    How about #MikeFinLaughsToBeatCancer or #FUCancer…well, maybe not that last one.

    OK, friends, time to suggest a cool # for Michael. I’ve already made 2 suggestions.

    Michael, if you need a good thought on a day that sucks, just imagine riding in the Nena Brister convertible around the Hub City. Ahhhh….nice….peace out, my friend.

  7. I am so sorry about the cancer, but so thankful that it is curable. I am also thankful that you are finding humor in all of this, though I am not the least bit surprised.

    Joke of the day:
    Why did Tigger look inside the toilet?
    He was looking for Pooh!

  8. I’d be interested in those pills.

  9. i jsut found out and wow this is unbelievable but not your sense of humor. I’m sure that is one thing that will keep you going and this blog is a great way to vent. You may even want to start thinking about publishing something like this

  10. Hey…who are you calling old? :-)

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