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regularly scheduled program

It’s been a long two months since Dave’s surgery.  I can hardly believe that it’s only been two months; but, yesterday, Dave went back to work.

When he first got out of the hospital, he was very weak and tired easily.  He was on a fiber-restricted diet, as Dr. Koep wanted to play it very safe.  He didn’t want to risk any perforations in Dave’s colon.

When all was said and done, Dave was discharged from the hospital with two new incisions, the bigger one about two inches long, open to his abdomen.  Because it was still draining copious amounts of fluid, an ostomy bag was placed over the open wound.  That last day at the hospital, we were given a lesson in would care and changing out the bag.  Fortunately, the nursing supervisor got on the phone with our insurance company and we were grateful to know that our insurance covered home health and visits by a nurse.  I’m not going to lie.  If I’d had to help Dave take care of the incision, I would have; but, it would have been rough.

Dave got to leave the hospital in time for the Super Bowl party at my parents’ house.  Friends of the family, my aunt & uncle, and my cousin, Tom, were all there.  I think that they were shocked at how drawn Dave looked.  They hadn’t seen him since before the first surgery.

Within a couple of days after the first nurse’s visit, the incision stopped putting out as much fluid and Dave was able to revert to bandages.  Dr. Koep pronounced Dave good to go.  His blood levels were back to normal and the incision was healing nicely.

The surgeon’s office gave Dave a return to work slip and wished us well.

For the past two weeks, Dave has steadily improved.  He began to feel significantly better, and last week, he turned a corner.  His boss, Steve, had flown out from Minnesota, and he made a point to drive across town and take us to dinner.  He’s a great guy, and really cares about Dave.  On Friday, Steve organized a team lunch.  Dave drove in to work, and spent time with his coworkers.  It was a good way to dip his foot back into work.  The night before, as we finished dinner, Dave said,

“I think that I’m getting a migraine.”

I told him that I wasn’t surprised.  There was a lot of anxiety, emotion and excitement wrapped up in going back to work after all that he’s been through.

Yesterday morning, we jumped right back into our normal routine.  When Dave came out of the bathroom after his shower, he pulled on his work uniform.  He was swimming in it!  Throughout this ordeal, Dave has lost forty-five or fifty pounds.  He’s going to need new clothes.

He texted me a couple of times throughout the day yesterday.  It was good for him to get back.  He was surprised and gratified to find out how many people were glad to see him and had been worried about him.

That’s really something…finding love and support from not just those close to you; but, to also get messages of caring and concern from friends around the globe.

There will be some follow-up appointments here in the near future; but, for now, we are so, so glad to be able to say that Dave is cancer free.

Dave the Survivor