Greg, How Are You?

Cue and Aye

by on May.25, 2012, under The Days

How are you?

I’ve been better.  Yes, understatement.   Given the circumstances, I’m as good as can be.  Really.  The last 48 hours were the best since becoming an in-patient on the 2nd of May.  Today is infusion+16.  The doctors are very happy with my progress.  I’m eating, paring down the steroids and IV foods and feeling like that guy I know and love.  Still a ways to go.  Last night was pretty uncomfortable but no worse than some tylenol could handle.

How are your parents?

They picked a great trailer park, the reservoir at San Dimas.  Healthy and happy but weary from traffic, it takes them 20 to 45 minutes transit.  The trailer offers super tight quarters compared to the house in Hanford.  They visit every day and mom makes me egg salad which when I was a kid we called Egg-In-A-Bowl.  The mustard is a nice crisp flavor for me and eggs digest well.  They are encouraging as always.  They just watched me sleep mostly at the beginning of the month but lately the conversation has really picked up I think due to my brain coming back online.

What’s next?

My Dad made a simple list on the whiteboard.  1.  Feel better.  2.  Get well.  3.  Get out.  4.  Get home.    Number one is accomplished.  Number Two is in progress and Number Three is tentatively to be June 4th.  I’ll move to a cottage on the hospital property and be out of the hospital.  I can then wander some gardens and get fresh air though still avoiding germs and hazards.  I’ll have room for projects larger than a hospital bed and that’s anticipated to be about The Uke and The Guitar and The RC Helicopter.

What are you eating?

Peach yogurt.  Protein bars.  Egg salad.  Ensure beverage.  Resource Breeze beverage.  I had a french dip (half) and it hurt. Not again.  Crackers.  Water.  Lots of nystatin and biotene (mouth care products to prevent uclers).  Altoids.  Keeping weird flavors at bay also minimizes nausea cues.

How’s the sleep?

Broken.   I’m awake at least a bit most hours.  If I get a 90 minute stretch, that’s awesome.  Three of those I consider an excellent night.  The steroids play hell with my mind which I like during the waking hours and dread for sleeping.  My pride keeps me from having them knock me out with benadryl or ativan.  I want to be healthy all on my own!   It’s working.   And we’re dropping the steroid levels a third again today.

What’s on your mind?

Writing python to generate scripts to generate stills of a movie.  Very math heavy.  The happy downfall of the Heartland Institute.  A very hot indy 500 ahead.  Tons/Ooodles/Huge Love and Anticipation of Joy for my friends headed to Lightning in a Bottle Music Festival down here in Silverado this weekend.  The awesome Sky Alchemist game.  California doubled the eligible number of solar roof tops for net metering.  Book Sex at Dawn.  There’s going to be mad mad mad fireworks in SF on Sunday for the 75th birthday of the Golden Gate Bridge.

What are you looking forward to?

Judy is visiting today!


6 comments for this entry:
  1. Turtle

    Your Greg-ness is coming back more and more and I’m so happy that you are feeling better! I hope the move to the cottage is soon, I’m glad they have gardens.

    I’m not at LIB either, but for much more fun reasons of course. Maybe we’ll both get to go back together in the future, I’d like that.

    It’s been cool and windy in SLO lately, a late spring cold snap but I doubt it will get frosty. I started my veggi garden entirely from direct seeding in the ground this year. It’s more exciting than plating baby plants from the nursery, it’s been fun getting better at growing directly from seed, but I’m hoping it does not get too cold again because I’ve got lots of little babies out front.

    Kids usually get teeth over time, but Lucas is getting eight teeth all at once right now, and all of them are early. He’s been a mess, but on the bright side it will all be over soon.

    Now I want egg salad!

  2. Russ

    “Ensure beverage.”

    We are currently in the loop with an older family member and trying to sort out her nutritional and medical problems.

    She’s been sucking down the Ensure like crazy yet still slowly wasting away, losing bone and muscle mass. Her energy level regularly crashes to near zero.

    We pointed out that if you read the Ensure ingredients list from the top, you find:

    (1) Water

    (2) Sugar

    (3) High fructose corn syrup (especially bad sugar)

    (4) Maltodextrin (digests to sugar)

    When you finally get down to stuff with substantive nutritional value, it’s not worth paying for. A not very impressive type of bulk protein, and a long list of vitamins and minerals, most of them in the cheapest and often least bioavailable form.

    She has been switched over to a different nutrition drink with a better protein profile and far less sugar. We also suggested a liquid medium-chain-triglyceride supplement to keep her energy levels up and consistent. She’s doing better already.

    On the medium-chain triglycerides:

    MCTs are something of a biochemical and nutritional oddball.

    MCTs are fats. The body will not normally absorb fats straight from the gastrointestinal tract without subjecting them to various intermediate steps. MCTs absorb directly, bypassing any deficiencies in digestion.

    Once in the bloodstream, MCTs can be directly and immediately used by the body as fuel. Usually, preferentially so. With none of the sugar-crash effect afterward.

    If you look at the very expensive parenteral feeding
    formulas used in hospitals for patients in the intensive
    care or preemie wards, those formulas are MCT based, for
    high energy and easy utilization.

    Any reputable health food store should have two or three
    different forms of MCT as a standalone, plus also perhaps
    having it incorporated into certain of the premium protein weight-gain products.

    As for the egg salad? Nothing to flag there. Enjoy it!

  3. Turtle

    If it’s MCT’s you want, just grab the coconut oil. 🙂

  4. JJ

    So awesome to hear the progress — and June 4th is so around the corner! Gardens are indeed the best. Go Go Go! You rock Greg! (And Russ…you rock too my friend. We all need you as our medical consultant — interesting info as usual.)

  5. Brigid Warmerdam

    Hi Greg,

    I remember you coming to my parents house around the holidays and I stopped by your site to see how you are doing! Speaking of the GG bridge 75th anniversary — I am currently at the UCSF library (studying for my GMAT test that I will take this Wednesday) and this library has a beautiful view of the Golden Gate bridge. I am hoping to watch the fireworks show from here this evening! It’s great motivation to keep my butt in this seat and study all day. Oh, and I hear that book Sex at Dawn is fabulous. At least Dan Savage says it’s fabulous and I agree with 99.9% of the things he says!

    See you on the farm real soon!


  6. Katie Franklin

    Hi Greg, I was just looking at what Dorene and you were up to and found your web page here. I wanted to let you know I am so impressed with your spirit. You are so inspiring with all you do and all your striving to get better. I am in your camp sending you lots of love and spirit to soar on out into the world again!!

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