Week 8 – Monday and Tuesday – Home again!

For those following the blog you may have noticed I didn’t make an entry yesterday.  That was simply because there was not much to report.  I slept reasonably well and the day passed without too much drama.  Fiona and Michael made another visit and then headed off to Canberra.

Monday night was similar with 6-7 hrs sleep in between observations, blood tests etc.

Tuesday was the day of excitement as it was my day to be ‘released’ to go home.  The nurses were all very enthusiastic about this and tried to get the IV drugs through the machine as early as possible.

My home for the last week. The room with the view is second floor in the new grey section, second from the right.  The new building has been constructed on top of the original 1950s hospital!

However I was surprised to learn early in the day that my red blood cells were very low and the team  decided to give me two extra bags of blood as a transfusion before letting me out.  This was to take 4 hours.  Plus the Ambisome anti-fungal IV which takes two hours.

So I spent the morning and early afternoon until 3pm knitting away (learning how to decrease stitches today) waiting for all the IV drugs to go through the system.

Jan also brought in a great present from a mate in Sydney, Steve Duncan which was a new Akubra hat.  Steve was not happy about the small cap I am wearing!

The bags are packed and I’m on my way home (complete with a new Akubra!)

I met a guy yesterday who has just gone through a bone marrow transplant (after 2 years of treatment – for a different cancer) and he was happy to tell me that plenty of things can go off the rails with transplants, as it had for him.

With that knowledge I asked the Heam Team what I was likely to be in for.  They were guarded with their response and said I was best to speak to the Transplant specialist – Amit Kot, who I have met just once, and hope to ‘start the conversation’ (as they say), soon.

So by 3.30pm I had left my lovely room on the 7th floor overlooking Royal Parade and Grattan Streets and headed for home to unpack, potter and chill out – bliss!  In my absence Jan has put together a range of pots with a lovely kitchen garden full of herbs, lettuce etc on our balcony.

The familiar site from our balcony. Nice to be home again.

Unfortunately it will only be for a few days as the Heam Team would like me back in by Saturday or Sunday as my neutrophils drop to zero – leaving me in the neutropaenic stage and very susceptible to infection again.  They would not say how well I would manage this process second time around but on all accounts it should be a better experience than the first round of Chemo. The next stay will be for 10 days or so.

I also have another round of the rare but important drugs from the USA, Midostaurin which will start on Thursday and run for 10 days.  Interestingly a warning on the packet says don’t eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice when taking these drugs – apparently there is a conflict of enzymes when this takes place, as the same enzyme that breaks down the drug also breaks down grapefruit!

Enjoying a homemade grapefruit juice and soda (many thanks to my mother in law’s grapefruit tree)  prior to abstaining when taking the Midostaurin.

More in a day or so.

7 thoughts on “Week 8 – Monday and Tuesday – Home again!

  1. Glad you are out for a few days. I missed your blog yesterday as we all follow it closely! Glad the knitting is going so well, when do you start on a Fairisle jumper?
    Enjoy your time in that beautiful apartment with it’s fabulous view. H and H


  2. I want to see a photo of you with that Akubra on in your next blog Geoff.
    What Style is it Geoff ? I’m in the Market for a new one myself.
    Love your blog Geoff!

    Regards Roger & Sally Wakefield


  3. Looks like you have new joggers too! All the better to tear around Docklands.

    We golfed yesterday. Cluc received a new handicap about half his normal but blew us away in great fashion by parring the first two holes in style – maybe the new handicap was right. Then the wheel fell off! I played my usual hopeless game – I think three reasonable shots out of sixty odd! Fozzie played as he always does and Hodgie was inconsistent as usual. Cluc is looking for a significant increase in his handicap after it was tallied up.

    Next time you see Cluc, ask him to explain all those obscure cycling terms you hear on the TV …he is an expert.

    Rest up and take care,



  4. Seriously impressed you are knitting. Could never master it as a child and still cant. Look forward to seeing the Akubra in situ. You’ll look more man from snowy river than Jeremy Clarkson.
    Can you please send best address for post?


  5. Plenty of things can go right with the transplant too Geoff as I witnessed with my mum. Happy to see you are still as bright and positive as ever. I am seriosuly impressed with your knitting efforts – i was never patient enough to knit! Looking forward to seeing the end result.


  6. Hi Geoff – the old knitting better turn out well. Bit of expectation coming through the blog replies re seeing the final result. I’m sure knowing you that it will be up to scratch. No pressure…….


  7. Hi Geoff. Sorry it’s been a while since I checked in. It’s been a bit manic. I’ve done a catch up read through of all the posts and it’s great to see your progress and how you are forging a path through each moment, hour, day. Not surprising you’re doing so well, that’s how you roll. I’m especially pleased to see the knitting! I still remember knitting my Mum a tea cosy when I was about 9 I think. It was burgundy and pink and like a good Mum she even told me she loved it AND she used it! We did it at school and I loved it. Of course as a young boy it was all about how fast I could do it… no doubt you aren’t affected by such frivolous competitive and boyish types of thinking these days… *cough cough*. No doubt you are enjoying any of the home time you are getting though it seems the medical team around you are embracing you as you are them. Good luck with the knitting – it appears it might be the most anticipated final product ever in the knitting world!


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