Okay, the initial shock of my cancer diagnosis has passed. Last Thursday they did an abdominal CT scan, which was particularly unpleasant because it involved drinking a quart of barium. The stuff is opaque to x-rays, so it allows my intestinal tract to be imaged. The stuff tastes nasty, like drinking a chalk-flavored milkshake. The last time I had to use it was for an upper and lower GI series when I was nine years old. It’s probably one of the more traumatic memories of my childhood.
The CT scan didn’t show any bad news. I have a couple of swollen inguinal lymph nodes, but that could also be an effect of HIV. The radiologist’s opinion was that this doesn’t look like cancer. I had my second surgery yesterday, mostly a clean-up operation to make sure they didn’t leave any cancer behind.
My intention was to miss last night’s rehearsal, since they told me I wouldn’t even be able to leave the hospital until about 7 PM, but as it turns out I got out of there around five, so I decided to go anyway. I figured that was the right thing to do, because we’re getting really close to the show and I am still determined to perform. Also, they wanted someone with me for eight hours after surgery, so Jim would have needed to miss out, too. I also needed to discuss an issue with the membership president regarding the Chorus’ chemical use policy. We are strictly forbidden to perform on stage if we’re under any influence, but according to the president, prescription drugs are allowed. Still, I think I will avoid the Vicodin on concert days. Even it if is allowed, I’m pretty high up on the risers this time, and I also think it has a negative impact on my performance.
Once again, I have been reminded of what a bunch of fabulous people make up the Chorus. There was an outpouring of well-wishes and one person who gave me a good-natured chewing out for even being there instead of resting. But to be honest, there was no place I would rather have been than surrounded by all these great guys!Share