To: Family & Friends

Date: February 19, 2013

Subject: Status Update

This was originally an email written to my family and friends on the date above. I decided to make these public in the event they may be helpful to someone in the future who is embarking on a similar journey to mine.

Hello All–

Last Wednesday (nearly a week ago) I went in for follow-up appointment with the surgeon that performed my abdominal surgeries. Everything appears to be healing well and he removed the 22 staples from my main incision. His overarching message to me was to be patient. My body is doing a lot of work to heal itself on the inside and the outside right now, and that it would be another 2-3 weeks before I really start to feel like I’m making significant progress.

Never having gone through something like this before, I was hoping for a faster timeline. Knowing what to expect helps though – as long as I feel like I’m making the progress I should be, I’m glad to be on track.

Over the last few days I’ve been able to straighten up a bit more when sitting, and yesterday I was able to lie down flat on my back for the first time since the surgery. I’m standing a little straighter too, but there is still some work to be done there.

My appetite is returning, and I’m eating more. I haven’t weighed myself yet, but it definitely feels like I’m on the right side of starting to regain weight.

I had to go back on the Percocet at night briefly last week, but for the last few days I’ve been on Tylenol exclusively again. Sleeping has been pretty good overall, with occasional rougher nights that lead to morning naps. I’ve been re-watching the West Wing on my iPad when I need to lie down but don’t feel like sleeping. Having so much streaming video content from Amazon and Netflix is pretty convenient right now.

Each of the last few days I’ve been doing a little “fun” work at my desk. I don’t last too long, but it’s been a nice feeling to make progress on pet projects that had been back-burnered for a while.

Next week we are traveling to Tucson with family on Heather’s side (her brother’s family and parents) for our annual family “winter trip”. We’ve done this a few times now, hitting Phoenix and San Diego respectively the previous two years. The kids have a great time playing together, and I should be in fine shape to travel. The weather there will likely be a little cooler than we’d hoped for (60s instead of 70s), but it should still be nice enough to sit outside in the afternoon and sun myself on a rock.

Our return should coincide with the timing for me to get started with tests and meeting with the oncologist. Until we have any hard information there, I’m pretty much putting that next phase of the process out of my mind (to focus on the immediate recovery), but it’s very much on the horizon.

I’ve enjoyed having a number of visitors as well as calls and notes from friends and family. These really help me feel still somewhat connected to the outside world. My thanks to all of you.

This post is part of the thread: Cancer – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.