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Friday, January 15, 2010

Back to Work

On Tuesday and Wednesday this week I had my first go at playing in the orchestra again. I had played my oboe a few times sparingly before this, but until now I have had the luxury of being in my house. If something didn't feel right I could walk away, but the same isn't true during a concert. I was worried about stage lights and hot flashes, about my new diabetes insipidus and forgetting to have water right next to me. I was worried about a sudden pop in my head and blood spurting out my nose (seriously). I was worried about my head spinning around 360 degrees (<-- joke).

I had a nightmare last night where I went on a camping trip but forgot to bring my medications. It was scary being stuck in the woods like that, but it was also a reminder I am returning to normal life because of modern medicine. My tumor is gone. Without neurosurgery I would be blind right now. The glands that regulate my body are inoperative, but I can manually replace everything my body will not produce. I can be normal (and I can go camping) but I need to remember my medication schedule. This is why I had that nightmare.

When I wake up first thing, I take a thyroid pill with plenty of water. Later, I take medications to control my blood pressure as well as another hormone pill. After my shower, I smear on a gel packet of testosterone. Later in the day I take another hormone pill and another blood pressure pill. Also, I use a nasal spray to regulate my diabetes insipidus. This last one is finicky because if I don't time the spray correctly, I develop either massive fluid loss (and extreme thirst) or major fluid retention (swelling of my arms and legs). I can always tell if it is the latter because my feet feel like jello and I can't wear my watch. If I let it get to that point, it takes a day or two to get back to normal (assuming everything else is taken exactly on schedule).

Aside from the minutiae of keeping my meds straight, how did I sound in my big return? Well, trying to be modest, I can still make reeds, I can still blow and I still have ears. I thought I sounded just fine.

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