Once again, my friend and I continued our dialogs having new information to consider. He met with his family physician, who reviewed the preliminary results of the spinal tap and the blood test panel. Everything looked okay except for a large “spike” in the graph for albumen/protein. The doctor explained that is sort of a “marker” for a person having some variety of auto-immune disease, but not which one. However, the lab report indicated that if desired, an electrophoresis  breakdown could be used with the original sample, to provide a more definitive analysis.

My friend contacted the neurologist’s PA, suggesting that this further analysis might be well to do this week so that when the neurologist returns from his vacation next week, there would be no delay in waiting again for a lab result. He told me that the PA had emailed him that it had been ordered. The preliminary report also indicated that the test for lupus was negative. The appointment with the neurologist is set for Monday, the 16th.

This waiting was likened to that of a person sent to prison for a crime he did not commit, and waiting to hear if his sentence is to be commuted, if  a life sentence is being imposed, is there a death penalty? (Fortunately, the current Governor of Texas is not a player in this scenario). Being a proactive person, he wants to be able to plan, to plan for SOMETHING. The “Not Knowing” is eating away at his comfort zone. And two of his close friends are going through their own versions of Hell, one who goes on to kidney dialysis in another month or so, and the other who found out Friday that he has kidney cancer, with the offending organ to be removed sometime soon. But at least, they KNOW.

I personally recall reading a book, “Anatomy of an Illness”, written by Norman Cousins, former editor of the Saturday Review of Literature. I had lunch with Mr. Cousins back in 1964, before he was saddled with some type of cancer; his book documented how he used intense involvement in humor to successfully conquer the disease. It would be highly informative to explore the internal thoughts and ramblings of a person dealing with the prospect of imminent death; I sometimes wonder if Alzheimer’s and dementia are Nature’s way of preparing the individual for the finality of passing to the next stage. Many of them, I’m told, are no longer aware of what is happening, and thus are not burdened by the fear of the unknown. As for me, if I were to be faced with the prospect,  I don’t think I’m ready to go, there’s too much to be done.

Always Be Hopeful                                         Temper Our Yin

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