"Madame, bear in mind That princes govern all things--save the wind." -Victor Hugo, The Infanta's Rose

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Over the river and through the woods...

...we're off on a Houston drive!
For my hospital tests
I'm feeling quite stressed
I hope I get home ali...ive!

Ho, ho, ho! Time to get out the sleigh bells and put a wreath on the front grill of the van, as we're about to hit the road for the holidays. In addition to visiting the relatives, it's also time for me to go back to Methodist Hospital for another pre-transplant evaluation of my lung functions for my IPF, so I'll be spending the better part of Wednesday and Thursday being poked, prodded, stuffed into a little airtight cabinet, and blowing into tubes. What jolly fun! After quite a few of these pulmonary function tests, I think I've about got the routine down by now.

The good news is that I seem to still be doing fairly well considering that two years ago, I was told that I had perhaps 18 months left to live ... and I honestly feel better now than I did then. I can't help but think that my experimental pirfenidone treatment has had something to do with that (and of course, all that clean living - hah!) so I'm optimistic that the test results this week will show that I've remained relatively stable in the six months since my last exam. I have noticed that I'm coughing more and seem to be getting tired more easily than I did over the summer during my whirlwind New England road trip, but we'll see what my pulmonologist has to say. Most likely, I expect he will tell me to come back in another three months (or six months if I'm lucky) and we'll do this drill all over again. It's a bit frustrating to be stuck in limbo like this: dependent on supplemental oxygen and not well enough to be able to carry on "normal" activities, yet not sick enough to need immediate transplant surgery. But hey, I am not complaining! On the contrary, I consider it a major blessing that I'm doing as well as I am, and have learned to cope with the limitations imposed by my condition. This glass is definitely half-full. (Which, being an engineer, reminds me of the old joke that an optimist sees a glass as half full, a pessimist sees it as half empty, and an engineer sees a glass that's twice as big as it needs to be.)

But once this business is out of the way Thursday afternoon, it's on to more pleasant things including some shopping and dinner at a nice restaurant in Houston, and visits with friends and family there. We'll be back on Christmas eve to spend a quiet holiday at home, and may find a few minutes for an occasional blog post here and there. I'm sure most of you will be busy with your own family gatherings, but please stop by and say "hi" if you get the chance. I know one blogger friend in particular will be quite busy with having a baby over the holiday; please visit April's blog and wish her congratulations once her little bundle of holiday joy arrives (any day now). Talk about a great Christmas present!

I'll leave you for now with this sacred and uplifting tune that will hopefully enhance your enjoyment of the season; I think it captures the true spirit of the holiday. Just click on the little "play" button below. If I'm not able to post again before the weekend, let me take this opportunity to say...

Merry Christmas to All
And To All a Good Night!


  • At 12/19/2006 03:33:00 PM, Blogger Janelle said…

    Ah! It just doesn't quite feel like Christmas until Red Peters finally breaks out the holiday tunes!

    I supposed that you have heard it already, but my brother just introduced me to Red's "You Ain't Getting Shit for Christmas," which I found hilarous.

    Merry Christmas Mr. Toast. It's hard to believe that I have been reading your blog for over a year now and I really enjoy it.

    Oh, if I gave you my blogger info, could you make changes to my header for me?


  • At 12/19/2006 08:11:00 PM, Blogger Sphincter said…

    Merry Christmas to you and to Mrs Toast!

    Your little tune has instilled some holiday spirit in me at last.

    Travel safely.

  • At 12/19/2006 11:25:00 PM, Blogger April said…

    hey! Thanks for the shout out! I wish you the very best of luck at your doctors appointments. I've also enjoyed reading your blog this past year or so. You're a good writer (consider a career change?) You have interesting stories to tell and I check your blog everyday. Happy Holidays to you and Mrs. Toast, when you come back from the road, check my blog for baby pics!

  • At 12/20/2006 12:21:00 AM, Blogger jbwritergirl said…

    Good luck on the tests. Hope you get out there and slay the shopping while you're still hot from blowing. He He!


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