Hello there, friends! I have had the busiest few weeks. But I will tell you, for those of you who like to read my blog, I've been thinking of things to write about the whole time! For now, I'll just enlighten you on my latest "journeys."
I've always said I had a gypsy soul. A love of the travelin' lifestyle. A yearning for all things new. But let me tell you, when you have cancer, and you are a modern day gypsy traveler because of treatment, it's not so relaxing! Get this; Monday, we are scheduled to leave around 12, we would arrive in Chicago at 2:20 for our 2 hour layover. After our "break" we board and get to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at 7:20. Mama and I waved down the hotel shuttle, took a quick ride down the road, and got to the hotel. Starved, when we do arrive, we met up with Garrett, (who, poor thing, got there at 12) and walked next door to the Ruby Tuesday, the only thing around to eat. We went in and ate. Had a sweet waitress. I had a well needed Tequila sunrise, and soon paid the check, and walked back to the hotel. It was a wonderful feeling, laying on a bed after the long day of traveling. (Mid-air, we found out that the Boston marathon had been bombed. A sickening feeling, especially when you're traveling that way, and in one of the many places terrorists have struck before. To see the terror on those poor people's faces, is a sad feeling.. But thats a whole other story).. Ahh, to be somewhere, finally, I felt relieved, as we were somewhere we could rest our bodies, and relax for a bit. Well, sort of. We had to be gone and on our way to FoxChase Cancer Center at 6:15am. And of course, it was an all-day trip to the hospital.
Meeting the sweet, Dr.Movva was a treat. I also met my clinical nurse, another very kind-hearted individual. They pushed on my belly, checked my reflexes, listened to my heart, lungs, tummy, and who knows what else, and also had me sign my Clinical Trial forms. The trial sounds like some sort of robot prototype. I0S6- something-or-other. But everything seems great. It's not experimental, to clear that up to some friends of mine, who thought it was. It's FDA approved. Which, does that really mean anything? Ha. Anyway... They told me that I will get my chemo pills next time I go, explained the side effects, the pros and cons, and let me know my schedule, in a round about way, (for now), and they sent me on to do blood work. I then had to wait quite a while, and did my PET scan. Those suck. Period. I did manage to fall asleep while they had me going through the tube thing you see on the show "House," so I didn't have to deal with it too long. Haha. Oooh, and then I was done at the hospital. What a wonderful feeling to be told, "Okay, you're all set, you can eat now!" after not being able to eat or drink since midnight the night before, take in consideration it was already 4:00 in the afternoon, no coffee=no happy. So off we go.
We had our car service bring us to our second hotel. Oh yeah, did I mention, we had our luggage with us the whole time at the hospital? Haha, yep, we did. We had to change hotels that day, so we couldn't leave our stuff! But it made for a good catch all. I could just stuff all my papers and crap in my bag and be done. Anyway, our hotel number 2 was even more beautiful than the first! Right smack in the middle of downtown. Everything was walking distance, the view was awesome. We even saw a live newscast going on directly under us, on the street. So, after we got coffee, (a grande Americano with a double shot and vanilla for me) we went up to our room and actually rested for about an hour and a half. Ahhhhh the relief. Bryan ( my cousin, who met us up there, that we stayed with. He's Comcastic!) got off work, and we went walking. We saw the sights, stood by The Rocky Balboa statue, and looked at the stairs and sang the theme song, (I was NOT walking those suckers after all the walking we did!) we accidentally had a long conversation with a homeless person, had a great dinner in a vietnamese restaurant, that somehow we had to ourselves, and had many many, much-needed, good, laughs. To end the night, we got donuts from a Dunkin, and watched crappy reality shows back at the hotel. Bryan learned you can steam donut holes, "munchkins" as Dunkin calls them, with an clothes iron. Don't iron them flat though, too greasy. Ha.
We woke up about 8:00am, and packed up to go home. We walked a few blocks to the Amtrak train, and rode to the airport. Our first time on a train, me, Garrett, and my mama, how fun! Haha.. Although, I have ALWAYS wanted to ride a train, it seems so classy and mysterious. It's really not. At all. But it was quick, and cheap, so that'll be the way we do it from now on in Philly. Train ridin'.. Soon we arrived at the airport. Mama and I had a flight leaving at 11:00. Garrett, not until 5:15. We all went through security. Which was much worse, because of the tragedy in Boston. And went to our terminal. Garrett waited with us as long as he could. I got some tea and a pastry, and we took off. After I finished breakfast, we soon landed in Chicago, only for about an hour this time. Had a terrible taco salad, (those people don't know what actual taco meat should taste like!) but it did the trick. We boarded, after I got yet another hot tea, and in just a couple hours, Houston was in our sight. As soon as I could, I called Garrett to see how his terribly long airport stay was going.. And well, it wasn't going good. His flight was delayed an hour, and then until 9:00, and back to 7:00. In short, he didn't end up getting home until 1:15 am. But, in between mine and Garrett's phone calls and texts, I got a call from California. Guess who?! (drumroll please...............) Mo Collins! She is a fellow GISTer! And wanted to call me to see how my trip went. That woman is hilarious. We talked for about 30 minutes, and promised to keep in touch. If ever the other needed to talk about feeling crappy from chemo, or to compare side effects, or just to talk about the weather, we'll definitely keep in touch.
So, all in all, my first trip to Philadelphia wasn't all that bad. Just very rushed! In the future, I need to make sure we have allotted time to just chill out. Because even still, I'm trying to catch up on rest. I'm exhausted! Next time, we'll do things a tiny bit different. Like make sure Garrett doesn't get the 5:00 flight. And we'll avoid the bums a little better, so they don't try to convince us to pay for a hotel room for them. But most ofALL next time, we WILL get a greasy, meaty, fresh, hot, Philly cheesesteak, with EXTRA whiz.
Thanks for being so involved in this crazy life of mine y'all! I love y'all more than you'll ever know! Keep on supporting and praying for me! I appreciate it sooooooo much.