Don Bowen Update: 2008-07-29

Monahan’s came over for a visit and cards on Friday night. I’ll be big and not even mention who won 🙂 Amy went to a movie with friends and we asked her if she liked it. She said, “I didn’t realize there was going to be all that sci-fi stuff in it.” So we asked what she saw, to which she replied, “Journey to the Center of the Earth.” 🙂

Quick hair update. I have hairs growing out of my incision/scar. I could make grill brushes with these babies or hold my own in a fight with a porcupine. At the other end of the spectrum the hair on the right side of my head is like peach fuzz. White and wispy. I don’t know if bald is beautiful, but it is better.

We have Lucie Bouteille (boo tay),who lives in Grenoble, France and was our next door neighbor for three years, staying with us for a couple weeks.

Her parents, Remi and Veronique, sent some very nice gifts with her, including some excellent chocolates and tea. Hey Remi, where is the red wine? Just kidding. It doesn’t mix well with my chemo.

Eileen and I left for Duke early Saturday afternoon, but didn’t get to my friend Ken O’Berry’s until around 1:30am. Ken and I worked together at Sun. He has a great place and was a great host. That must be a trait of everybody from NC. Sunday he let us sleep in, but then he and his son Mike treated us to a jam session. Despite the afternoon heat we finally got to see Sarah P. Duke Gardens joined by Ken, daughter Hannah and Mike.

More garden pictures

The trip wouldn’t have been complete without a game of cribbage. We each won a game, but had to call it a night early, so we’ll just have to play the rubber game of the match next time. Thanks, Ken!

I met two new doctors at my appointment on Monday morning. Dr. Katherine Peters and Dr. David Reardon. Dr. Peters is a neurologist and gave me the most thorough physical test so far. She told me that this MRI looked “better”, too, so I asked her what that meant and she said, “Let’s go back and look at them”. There is better and Better, but this was BETTER 🙂 The area on the MRI from 7/11 was much smaller and more dim, which is very good. I will post both when she sends them to me. When Dr. Reardon came in I told him I walked four to five times a week for an hour and he asked if I would come talk to some of his other patients. Of course my pride struck again because now I haven’t walked since Friday 🙂

I left Duke feeling very good about what they had to say, but my head hurt enough all day to keep me from celebrating too much. We were able to get an earlier flight home and the entire trip was less than 52 hours, which is impressive, considering all we did. Oh, and thanks to my new friend Peter Clark, Duke’s Identity Architect, who met us briefly after my appointment, we snuck in lunch at P.F. Changs. Thanks, Peter!

When we got on the plane to Chicago a woman right behind us, probably being treated at Duke, had on an eye patch. A young boy saw her and said, “Look Daddy! A pirate!” 🙂 I hope she saw the humor and wasn’t offended, but I thought it was hilarious.

I had my labs done at Duke yesterday and fortunately don’t have to do them tomorrow. Unfortunately I found out today from Dr. Peters that I have a few problems. My platelets should be above 125K and are at 108K. She said, “We aren’t worried that you will bleed to death” so I’m quite relieved, given my penchant for razors 🙂 My Absolute Neurofils Count (ANC) is 1.5, but they want it higher. I’m well enough to get my treatment on Friday, but if either get worse they’ll make me hold off for a while, to which my body says, “Oh, yeah!”, but I really want to stay the course. Please pray all my lab scores enable me to continue.

The headache continued today and tonight it’s as bad as it has been. The good news is that when it was bad like this before, the MRI was good. These are great times to remember that God is still in heaven and hasn’t moved. He hasn’t forgotten about me and isn’t surprised. This is when my faith sustains me. Do pray that the pain goes away. Working and even writing this update are quite difficult in this state.

I have to mention how great my wife has been. She has to give up so much of herself to care for me, mostly as chauffeur and seeing eye wife on trips 🙂 She has never complained – not once. And yet I know this is scarier at times for her. Please pray for God’s blessings and favor to blanket her.

“Houses and wealth are inherited from parents, but a prudent wife is from the LORD.” (Proverbs 19:14)
I need a miracle, God specializes in them, pray BIG!

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