By the way, the reason I've been writing so many poems (that is, attempts at poems) is that working on poems puts me into the Now and Now alone. I focus only on the poem, and for however long I work on it, I am free from worry, free from fear, free from all the constrictions and restrictions and delusional convolutions of my daily routine(s). It's not as much about the poem itself as about the process of making it. That's the core. That's the anchor.
But FYI, here's my daily routine update of what has been piling up: On July 20th, I went to the doctor and picked up my $600.00 bag, with a big hazardous materials warning on it that said, basically,"This is Some Heavy Duty Chemo Shit, So Beware." But it wasn't actually chemo, it was a month's worth of Interleukin 2 shots, with the first two weeks being only half-shots, because the doctor and I were worried that if I started out with full shots, it might exacerbate the red itchy rash that had been bothering me for several days and seemed to be getting worse. So he told me to go buy some over-the counter cortisone, use it for two or three days, get rid of the rash, and then start the new therapy shots.
Long'ish story short: I still haven't started the therapy because the rash got worse not better, has spread signficantly, itches like a motherf.....kr, and won't go away despite cortisone, Benadryl, this other cream, that other cream, Lotrimin, prayers, rain dances, voodoo, begging, pleading and cajoling.
So yesterday, when he returned from his vacation and finally, after getting my phone message asking why he hadn't yet responded to my email to him about all of this, he found my email in his spam folder, and we talked it all over, and I am now going to go see a dermatologist. We THINK that the rash might be an allergic reaction to the buildup of the low dose chemo drug, Xeloda, that I have been on for a year. Or it could be cancer (but not as likely as an allergic reaction, he says, and I hope). Or it could be my body's reaction to the cancer itself.
So yippee! I get to go to another doctor's appointment! And I got to go to one yesterday, too. An opthalmologist who took a look at my new left eye development, which began a few weeks ago. Another long'ish story short: I suddenly couldn't see for shit out of my left eye. Bummer beyond comprehension. After much adjusting of eyeglass prescription, many hundreds of dollars shelled out for that, to no avail, my optomotrist peered again into my eye and said, "Oh. Wait. I see something I didn't see before."
Fast foward to yesterday. Found out I have something with a name I have already forgotten. Basically, a sheath-like film of membrane that has grown over my retina, puckered, and thus causes my vision to be "wrinkled." It is not all that uncommon, apparently. I will spare you all the more nuanced details. Suffice it to say that he wants me to just live with it for the next six months. Says it will probably vacillate between better and worse. If I am lucky, maybe it will vacillate toward better and then stay that way. If I am not lucky, it will get worse. Or stay the same as it is right now, which sucks and is driving me crazy. The words on this computer screen, as I type this, are blurry and make me dizzy. It's like I have the wrong eyeglass prescription. If worse comes to worse, I can have eye surgery that would most likely fix it, but would then most likely cause cataracts to develop, thus causing the need for a second surgery for the cataracts. Or I could also be one of the small percentage of people for whom the surgery fucks up their eye in some nightmarish way; I (mercifully) have already forgetten what the specifics are, for that possible outcome.
So there you have it, my mini-update on the state of my body, which is what this blog is supposed to mostly be about, although my digressions are frequent and far-ranging, as you know.