The battle was joined ten itchy days ago, as my visage transformed from prison pallor to pretty pink to ridiculously red. After nearly six months, the RASH was back...and this time, it itched! The radiantly red skin rash spread further than last time, reaching my feet and my face. It was toasty to the touch, tender to the slightest brush of clothing or bed sheets, and it screamed to be scratched -- which hurt like the dickens as it temporarily relieved the prickling tickle.
Medical science rode to the rescue with the same formidable weapon as our last epic battle...triamcinolone cream...a soothing application of steroids to tame the flames and cool the creeping and crawling of my epidermis.
I am pleased to report that the enemy is in full retreat...not retired from the field, but in disarray and fading from view.
More blood tests were done yesterday, to track the attack -- most likely an outbreak of Graft vs. Host Disease -- and determine if my liver or kidneys were once again being set upon by renegade redneck T-cells. My doctor called this morning to report that all the numbers looked good...hemoglobin at 11.9, white blood count at 6.4, and platelets at 169,000. The liver function and kidney function numbers were all normal. Apparently, our battle was merely with the surface fleet.
Just a week away...
Next Tuesday, February 21, 2012 is the anniversary of my blood and marrow stem cell transplant -- one year since I received the gift of life from my brother, Kevin. I am still working on how to commemorate and celebrate this great gift. One thing is certain...I don't want to celebrate by scratching...;-)
It's late and I gotta rest.
Tomorrow's another day,
To live with passion and zest;
To love, give thanks, and to pray.
God bless and good night,