Prepping For Radiation Treatment - Life ... It's Why We Cook. Blog at - 189148

Life ... It's Why We Cook.

Prepping For Radiation Treatment 
Aug. 6, 2010 4:25 pm 
Updated: Aug. 11, 2010 11:44 am
08/02/10. I talked with surgeon at the UMMC, and he told me to re-schedule my appointment with the Radiation Oncology Department and tell the therapist about my hardships with having radiation therapy at UMMC. I did that and the therapist told me he had no problems with the Battle Creek Cancer Center. What a huge relief my wife and I felt- nearly elation! He did tell us to ask if the Battle Creek Cancer Center would communicate my treatment to him for UMMC to include in my history at UMMC.

08/03/10. I had my first meeting with the Battle Creek Health Systems Cancer Center (The cancer center) and met the therapist that will be in charge of my treatment. He reviewed my history and asked questions about my general health and gave me an abbreviated physical exam to get a general idea of my health. He was a little surprised that I had healed so well, so quickly and experienced little pain. Everybody there was happy that I had kept my own set of records and that they were 100% complete. Having those records filled in some areas that would have caused more lab work, x-rays or consultations. They had all of their information when I left. An appointment was made for Friday for me to have another cat-scan from shoulders up so they have a picture that shows the position of those bones and organs that could get in the way when I am immobilized for radiation.

I cremated the cow! I was going to fix one of our favorite evening dishes- beef and gravy over noodles. I put the beef into a saucepan with some broth to cook it into a rich broth for gravy. While it was cooking (on med/low heat) I sat down and quickly fell asleep. I awakened two hours later to a house full of smoke. When I got to the stove the contents of the pan were charcoal! So, I shut off the a/c, opened every window and door, and went outside for an hour.
When I came back in, the house was clear but it still smelled bad.
When my wife came home, she placed lit candles around the house and that helped a lot! Of course, she didn’t miss the golden opportunity to ridicule me!
I showed her how pathetically sorry I was and grilled her a Delmonico Steak, grilled veggies and Spanish Rice.
A couple hours later we were able to close up the house and get the a/c going.

08/04/10. Today is my quarterly visit with my primary care physician. He seemed pleased with the surgery and pathology report and agrees that radiation is a smart thing to do, at this point. He says I am in very good shape for my age and recent surgery. Also, I told him of the burning the food yesterday because I sat down and fell to sleep immediately. He said that one of my medicines will do that- usually within two hours of taking it. My failure fell within that time frame.

My brother called to check on my status and wanted to know what after affects there would be from the radiation. I told him that the radiation levels in my body would be so hot that my arm pits could be used like a George Foreman grill. He asked how often I cleaned them out. 

No doctor or hospital stuff, yesterday. Almost was like a vacation.

I will go off all restrictions today. Now, I can finish getting the garage and shop reclaimed from all the work this past spring. It’s going to be a real challenge, though.

I had to do the prep-work for my radiation treatments at the Cancer Center today. They had to form a mesh screen around my head and shoulders so that I will be immobilized during treatment. There can be no stray radiation in the areas they are radiating, which means I cannot move even a small amount during treatment. They are concerned about my chronic choking fits but they will deal with them if they happen.

My oral hygiene must be kept up meticulously, as well. Swishing and swallowing with vodka ain’t what they want. I have to brush three times a day whether I eat or not. Floss thoroughly after meals or snacks and use mouthwash after meals and snacks and at bedtime. If I get any sores in my mouth, the treatment must stop because the radiation will make them worse. If we don’t know about sores and they get radiated, the problems could range from minor to very serious. I guess I’ll do things their way.

Radiation begins on the 18th of August and will continue for six weeks or as long as the head of radiation determines. (Nobody wanted to guess what that could mean.)

SouthernGma and Kira are still wanting our hep! So, here’s the links!<; <
Aug. 6, 2010 4:40 pm
Been watching your blog to keep up! Thanks for the update. Had Gary down for my birthday brunch. He's doing pretty well, even tried my fiddly food. Been keeping up with SGma too! Thanks for sharing your life! Been there done that with unexpected cremation of dinner!
Aug. 6, 2010 5:01 pm
Thanks for the updates! I haven't cremated a cow or a chicken in quite some time. It sounds like your brother is as funny as you. I'll be thinking of you on the 18th; those 6 weeks will go by quickly. Take care of yourself.
Aug. 6, 2010 5:12 pm
So glad you've updated us Mike. Will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. You lay there real still and think of all the good wishes from all your AR friends and you could also plan future meals when you get your strength back - minus the creamated cow!
Aug. 6, 2010 8:37 pm
Be careful, for Pete's sake. You're going to have angry cattle ranchers and volunteer firemen showing up at all hours for a snack! Maybe you could use that "George Foreman Grill" of yours. The vodka could be used to sterilize your grilling instruments. And if you have just a wee bit more radiation, you won't even have to light the tiki torches. On a serious note, sounds like the docs have a good plan for you. Keep up with your laughter meds.
Aug. 6, 2010 9:49 pm
Oh Mike, I will send prayers to the Heavens. Sorry bout your burnt dinner, that was really nice of your wife to get the candles and help out. Kudos to her!! Really glad about the update. I am not going to say I know what you are going through, that would be arrogant,I just will say that I wish you well and stock up on Listerine!! Take care, And Uh Mike, take your naps After you eat! LOL
Aug. 7, 2010 7:27 am
Go easy on yourself - stress brings the immune system down. Cleaning the garage is not a priorty. I bought my husband Biotene toothpaste to help with the dry mouth/sores. Prayers for successful radiation treatments with no nasty side effects.
Aug. 10, 2010 10:05 am
stay strong and keep a good sense of humor mike! many folks are pulling for you and you're loved ones. that beef, gravy and noodles sounded good until... may god bless!
Mrs. C 
Aug. 11, 2010 11:44 am
Honestly, the radiation team made me feel so compfy that I fell asleep during the treatment. I hope your team is a warm and friendly bunch!You are not alone in clearing off the workbench. You will get to use it a lot as you get to feeling beter, and you will FEEL BETTER!
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Mike Harvey, daPITA

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About Me
At age 16, I began cooking when my mother was injured in an accident that kept her off her feet for five weeks. At first, my repertoire was fried hot dogs with pork and beans, boiled hot dogs with macaroni and cheese or pizza from a box. After a couple weeks of this, my younger brother was the first to protest and demand variety and my dad was quick to support him. That was my first cooking challenge, learning to plan a meal. About that time, mom returned from the hospital and from her bed, began teaching me things like roast beef, fried chicken, stews and all the sides and trimmings. In 1967, I married and my wife designated herself as the cook and this continued until 1999. It was then that I (voluntarily) began cooking again. At some point, I realized that I was having fun and began searching for recipes that were more challenging and interesting. I found AR and used it's recipes for a long time before registering and later becoming an active member.
My favorite things to cook
Soups. How can I go wrong? They are a great way to use up leftovers and those veggies that are approaching the end of their usefulness. They are always an original recipe. Roasts and steaks are favored, also. Getting the right "doneness" and choosing appropriate sides for a tastey and attractive meal is a continuing and always evolving menu.
My favorite family cooking traditions
If creating impulsive menus and recipes is a tradition then, (I guess) we have a tradition. A new tradition is developing. I have a fruitcake recipe that, I believe, is near perfection. I make it just before Thanksgiving so it is aged enough for the Christmas/ New Year holidays.
My cooking triumphs
Without a doubt, my own recipe for a Reuben Sandwich. It has been a demanded item for many years and I shared it in my AR blog.
My cooking tragedies
Too many. I have been able to throw them out and have something new before my wife gets home. Most of the time, anyway.
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