Type 2014A...


in the folktale roster is the "That's good, that's bad" formula story. I found out that it did not originate with my cousin H, who used to tell these stories in the 60s. Or maybe it was just the one classic story about the man and his new wife.

Here goes my attempt, not adhering exactly to the formula:
I had breast cancer.
That's bad.
That's good, I don't have it any more.
That's good.
That's bad. I have another kind of cancer, polycythemia vera.
That's bad.
That's good, it's slow-growing and sort of under control.
That's good.
That's bad, it makes my skin very sensitive, and it itches a lot. But because of my breast cancer, I joined a rowing team for breast cancer survivors and pre-vivors.
That's good.
That's bad, I rubbed my leg against the gunwale and got "slide bite."
That's bad.
That's not bad, I put antibiotic ointment and a bandage on it.
That's good.
That's bad, I ran out of bandages when we were in Oregon.
That's bad.
That's good, L got me some more bandages at Walgreens.
That's good.
That's bad, I reacted to the bandages with huge red welts.
That's bad.
That's good, it didn't kill me.
That's good.
That's bad, we were in a tiny town and couldn't find calamine lotion, cortisone cream or antibiotic ointment.
That's bad.
That's good, we got Campho-Phenique and I read online that toothpaste helps the itching.
That's good.
That's bad, when I got home half the welts were still there, and red and puffy.
That's bad.
That's good, I went to the doctor.
That's good.
That's bad, he said it could be staph or MRSA.
That's bad.
That's good, he prescribed Mupirocin ointment and asked if I wanted an oral antibiotic or if I wanted to wait.
That's good.
That's bad, the bumps are still red.
That's bad.
That's good, they're smaller.
That's good.
That's bad, I'm leaving town and don't know if I should ask for the pills.
That's bad.
That's good. I have the option. I have health insurance. I'm actually healthy, overall. Despite all. Sorry this isn't very funny, though.
That's bad.

[Photos from Mayo Clinic; mine started out like the one on the left, but are not as bad as the one on the right.]

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Its always something isn't it, Sandi? Susan Coster

Cancer Bitch said...

That's the title of Gilda Radner's autobiography. Yes, it's always something. Hope you're doing better.
C. Bitch

Brigitte said...

Hi Sandi...So glad I came across your site. I have PV as well; my sister is a cancer survivor (skin). Ups and downs, but your candor through it all is really inspiring. One day at a time. Thanks for the PV info.

Brigitte in Toronto

Cancer Bitch said...

Hi Brigitte,
What are you doing for your PV? I am happy to report that the phototherapy seems to be working! I am in the South where it is very very very hot and humid and when it's like that in Chicago, my skin itches terribly. But it's not here. Of course I am sweating, dripping sweat on old documents...
c. bitch

Brigitte said...

Yeah, this summer has been brutal. It's bad enough that the PV causes excessive sweating, now I'm just gross. I'm itching like mad, and when I break open the skin, it takes forever to heal, or leaves a scar... >:(

I'm taking 1000mg of HU. I'll be seeing my Naturopath soon; hopefully she'll be able to offer some complimentary advice.

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Cancer Bitch said...

Brigitte,
I've tried various antihistamines for the itching. Now I'm on Zyrtec. I was using Atarax, which worked really well for a while. Some people get results from Gabapentin. My hematologist told me that one patient of hers gets less itching with aspirin. Didn't work for me. The UVB light therapy does seem to help me now. What is HU?
C. Bitch