A Precautionary Tale


So J had his first real encounter with the negative effects of chemotherapyThursday night.  He had some uncontrollable shaking followed by a sudden high fever.  So we called our MSK doctors and decided to bundle up and head to our local ER.  We’re hanging out at Putnam Hospital for 48 hours now.  It’s not exactly fun to be in the hospital, but it’s very calm here, the nurses are incredibly friendly (or J somehow gets them to be that way) and it’s a short drive home.

J feels fine now (his temperature has been normal for the past day or so), but they want to make sure he doesn’t have an infection, so they’ve placed him on IV antibiotics.  Over the past couple of days, his immune system has gone on strike http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/neutropenia/MY00110 because of the inhospitable work conditions created by the chemo.  It’s been a tense negotiation, but his white blood cells are just now coming back onto the job site again (for med techies: absolute neutrophil count: just above 500 now).


One very special part of our all night party in the ER was that we got to spend the first part of J’s sister Kristin’s 40th birthday together.  Kristin spent all of last week helping us at home: bringing good foods from the farm, cooking lamb stew for Jay, rubbing my shoulders, making sure the pile of dishes in the kitchen didn’t become a hazmat site, hanging out with visitors, picking wildflowers, making tea and just generally being the most kind and caring sort of person one could dream of in situations like these.  We were so incredibly grateful for her healing presence and it felt very special to be with her to celebrate the first hours of her birthday together.

Come to think of it, we are grateful for so many kind gestures and words that have been coming into our lives in a steady stream.  If we haven’t said it yet, thank you thank you!  We love you ALL!

Love and gratitude,



  1. KR keep up the great posts. Thank you for everything!

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