Snake Eyes

It seems as though each time I make an optimistic blog post, something goes wrong. Since my last post was titled “Lucky Seven,” it seemed appropriate to keep with the gambling theme and title this one “Snake Eyes.” For those unfamiliar with the term, a throw of two ones with a pair of dice results in the lowest possible score, and by extension the term is also used to reference bad luck¹.


Snake Eyes

Today was supposed to be the start of my final round of chemotherapy, with the second and final day on Tuesday. Sunday night, however, I started running a temperature of 102 degrees Fahrenheit that prompted my second trip to the urgent care center at MSKCC over the weekend. The obvious concerns being influenza, bacterial infection, etc. that would delay receiving chemotherapy.

After a variety of tests, influenza and infection were ruled out. While it is possible to run a low grade temperature from daily radiation, a high temperature such as mine is unexpected. This left all of us wondering what was causing my fever and why it was so high. Since there was no immediate cause for concern, they decided not to admit me overnight and said that I could use Tylenol for the fever. They acknowledged that it was unlikely I’d be receiving chemotherapy on Monday.

The next day (Monday) I saw Nicole – the nurse practitioner. I could tell she was on the fence proceeding with chemotherapy that day given that my temperature was again above 100 degree Fahrenheit. She conferred with Dr. David Pfister my medical oncologist and they opted to be cautious and postpone chemotherapy by one day. The only good news is that this shouldn’t change my final day of chemoradiation therapy which is this Friday.

Around the time of my daily radiation treatment, my temperature had dropped to low grade and I’m hopeful that we can continue with chemotherapy tomorrow morning. Separate from having cancer or receiving treatment, my lower back pain continues to be a problem so they switched me to some stronger opioid medications. I’m not talking minor pain or discomfort – but rather debilitating pain making it tough to get out of bed or getting up from a sitting position. I’ve experienced lower back pain issues in the past, but they usually only last a day or two and aren’t this severe.

It’s the final stretch and I “should” be done with therapy this Friday, so I’m trying not to complain. Hopefully these are just minor speed bumps on the road to Friday and then recovery. Until then, keep those thoughts, prayers, and good vibes coming!



9 thoughts on “Snake Eyes

  1. Sending positive energy your way. Looking forward to hearing that the rest of your treatment proceeds without a hitch. Here’s to more lucky sevens!

  2. Those prayers, good thoughts and positive vibes are continuing! Praying for your continued strength to get you across this finish line of treatment. No more snake eyes allowed, you hear!!

  3. 3 more days, woo hoo! Stay strong big brother! Continued prayers and hoping your back feels better! Xoxo

  4. Keep going, Michael! I was driving today, and I thought 3 more days after today. Prayers and good vibes only are being sent to you!

  5. Michael we have been using you as an inspiration for not sweating the small stuff, and if good vibes are medicinal, you’re on your way to being cured.

  6. You will cross that finish line, Michael! You have our word about continuing our prayers – even the boys are praying for you daily – at least they listened to one thing I asked them to do. You see, miracles can happen! Hang in there – you are amazing 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

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