For those of you interested in how I'm doing (80 hits on this blog alone during the past 4 days- wow, I wasn't this popular in high school), I thought that I'd give you a quick update:
Physically: Swelling seems to have gone down on the floor of the pelvis where they stuck the needles, but it can get a bit sore during the night which I control with the use of regular Tylonol. In general, pain hasn't been a problem here.
The biggest problem is that I'm still having problems with standing up, by which I mean that whenever I do it I must immediately head to the bathroom - which is conveniently located only seconds away from the couch where I have stationed myself for the duration. Once I am at the plumbing, I get to pee through a strainer just in case any of the little radioactive seed beasties want to make a break for it. If this happens (it hasn't as of yet) I'm to gather them up and put them in my very own small lead-lined container for delivery back to MGH with my next appointment (and then they probably on to somewhere in Nevada).
The process of transport from couch to bathroom and back happens many, many times a day and can be pretty annoying since it does sort of limit my range of motion even putting my study upstairs out of reach for the moment. But, of course, it does give me something to do.
Mentally: I've been groggy during the past couple of days after being pretty clear headed on Saturday. This may be due to the fact that my sleep cycle is all messed up. Either that or the body is getting used to the fact that it now has foreign objects in it. Or most likely both. Either way, I'm groggy during the day and wide awake at 4am (check the time stamp on this post as proof). Having always been a guy who goes solidly to sleep for a full 7 or 8 or 10 hours a night, this is a new development.
Emotionally/Spiritually: Besides being somewhat annoyed with my body not functioning properly (nothing new since I grew up as a asthma and allergy-ridden kid), I seem to be the usual fairly stable personality that a good Yankee should be. This may change as the time I spend going back and forth to the plumbing extends further down the line. Or I may just not be understanding what's going on here. If you want better information, about this aspect of the recovery, you might get a more accurate assessment from Denise than from I.
One surprise that's starting to come to me out of this process is that I feel much more like someone who actually has/had cancer than I did for the past three and a half years since diagnosis. Prostate cancer is unusual among the long line of cancers that one can get simply because you can have it for a very long time before it will kill you or even give you symptoms if you have the "right" kind - the passive kind that I developed. This can lead to some very long mind games if you choose not to do anything about the fact that you have it for a long time like I did.
Living in a death-denying culture like we have, it's hard to simultaneously keep the fact that you have to keep on top of where this thing is going so that it won't get away from you and kill you while you don't have any significant symptoms. The cancer becomes a mental game where you try to effect the progression (something that is not easy to do since no one has come up with proven ways to do this - lots of theories, but no proof), while not getting any feedback as to how you're doing except a crude indicator (PSA) test every three months and maybe a biopsy once a year. Did cutting milk out of the diet work? There's no real way to know.
But now that I have titanium seeds, I guess that I feel like I've had my ticket punched. I'm now a full fledged cancer-survivor, even if I didn't have to go through all that invasive surgery and chemo that the other members of the Club That No One Wants to be a Member Of have had to go through. For this I am grateful. Having to go to the bathroom all the time is a pain in ass, but it's not anywhere near what others have to go through to cope with their particular version of these diseases. If anything and somewhat ironically, my initial feeling about all this is even more gratitude that I got away with cancer-lite than when I had no symptoms at all.
Ah, but life is strange.
Thanks for being interested in all this. I don't have a choice. It's nice that there are people who do who are interested anyway.
Please take care of yourselves.