Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Stranger Song by Leonard Cohen


Like any dealer he was watching for the card

that is so high and wild

he'll never need to deal another

He was just some Joseph looking for a manger

He was just some Joseph looking for a manger.

Leonard (I’m your Man) Cohen

The dealing has begun. In earnest. After fastidiously avoiding chemotherapy for the last 3 years, I am now embracing it, welcoming its immune suppression and bone marrow toxicity. Accepting its DNA damaging rampage and all the possible sequelae. Hit me with your best shot. Fire way.

I know this bravado may not last the night after the Cytoxan.  The Fludarabine was just another anticlimax, which is more good news. Nothing, nada, no immediate ill affects just some fatigue. Been walking in circles around the ward while I can. Soon I get Zofran for nausea, Benadryl for allergic reaction prevention, and IV Ativan to mellow me out (and keep me from tossing my tofu). I am pretty mellow, just not rested, with my IV beeping on and off throughout the night. So soon no more blogging for a hand or two.

As I write this, I am now being dealt the first of many winning hands and I plan to play them all with finesse and grace. And as Woody Allen suggests in two of his better movies (Crimes and Misdemeanors and Match Point), it is more important to be lucky than good. So wish me luck.

I may lose a trick or two, if not a contract or two. And it may look bleak at times but I will win my big bet in the end. This is all about going for the cure.  I hold the aces, and the card that is so high and wild. When I play that card, the TRANSPLANT CARD, I won’t be trumped. When this is all done, I‘ll never need to deal another. I'll be cured. I will be an ambassador from the land of those who had leukemia.You see I have more skin in the game that anyone else. I am going to win. And to quote Arnold Palmer, the more I practice the luckier I get. I have sure practiced in my head and tried to stack these decks in my favorite, marking the cards and reading the signs and I plan to avoid or just handle any runs of bad luck and trouble. Bad luck and trouble  are NOT my only friends, my bluesy readers

Who would have thought that Cohen's playing card analogy, a golfer's wry joke,  and a comic's shoulder shrug of a comment, all from my distant past would shine so brightly on my decisions these day.

 

3 Comments:

Blogger pablo said...

Bbonne chance, mon ami. (And apparently Leonard really rocked at Place des Arts last night - another great omen!)

June 25, 2008 at 7:55 PM  
Blogger Cindy Hills said...

Hi Brian, Well, I hope it's OK to call you by your first name, as you are so much more than a doc, but a treasured friend. You will never know how much you mean to all of us. Your strength, compassion, and courange have inspired us all. From Answered Prayers, Love Letters From the Divine by Julia Cameron: "I am a master of timing. Consider the planets in their course. Consider, too, the seasons. You surely can see the wisdom in these. Your life, too, can be timed to a fruitful unfolding. Come to me and ripen within my love. Allow me to shelter you. Allow me to provide you with safety." May God continue to provide you will all thay you need. Love and prayers, Cindy Hills and family

June 26, 2008 at 8:59 AM  
Blogger Howard said...

Brian, I told you I would follow you this great adventure. What a beautiful crew you have with you & all around you. A testament to the wonderful spirt you are. To Life.. Be well. Howard

June 26, 2008 at 7:56 PM  

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