I was hoping to post this long overdue update for Valentine’s Day but you know…life.
SPOILER ALERT: It’s a good news update!
Let’s begin with the eternal question: What is love?
Well, for the purposes of this blog post… LOVE is kissing your husband goodbye before you leave for work and having him ask, “What was your platelet count?” in a one-eyed-groggy-faced, still half asleep voice. You see, it takes 24 hours to get my blood work results in my email and they almost always roll it at 10:30 pm. Lately, I’ve been going to bed earlier (go me!) and so I don’t get them until the following morning. My loving partner eagerly awaits my numbers as if they were his own. And whether they go up or down, I smile and give him the number. He responds with a, “That’s great, they went up!” or a “It’s ok, they’re still pretty good.” To quote my husband, “Even though we don’t celebrate a ridiculous consumer based holiday doesn’t mean I don’t want to celebrate our love,” SO husband AND platelets, I LOVE YOU!
Back in December I was gearing up for the removal of my spleen (the site of platelet destruction). I’ve never had surgery and it was a tough pill to swallow. A part of me was convinced that it was never going to happen. On December 29, I went in for my usual 6 week check-in. My doc had recently gone to his annual hematology conference (which he called me from, I felt special) and had come back with lots of information and new research. With the surgery scheduled for 6 days out, he told me that he thought we should cancel. My platelet counts appeared to be responding to the dose of Prednisone and other lifestyle changes I had been making. Why have surgery when we can wait and see? So we cancelled.
Today, my platelet counts are in the normal range (fluctuating in the 200K range) and I’m on a slightly lower dose of meds. At the end of March I’ll go in for my 6 week check in and see if it’s possible to taper the meds even lower. My ITP-iversary is in June. Let’s all cross our fingers for another news blog post then.
For the first time in 32 weeks, I didn’t do blood work last week. It was liberating and anxiety inducing. It’s wonderful not feeling like I NEED to know what my counts are, because even if they drop, I won’t be in immediate danger. And backing away from the security blanket of it helps me get back to normal as well. I’m feeling more like myself again and I’m so grateful for everyone that’s been a part of my journey so far.
I’m starting to figure out how important it is to love YOURSELF. And give yourself the kind of care and attention that so many of us freely offer others. Love is being greeted with “Hey Boo!” at the blood draw labs. Love is buying yourself a tasty coffee and driving to the water to watch the sun set. Love is being tucked into bed like a burrito when you feel extra tired.
February is a great time to be reminded of love. Let’s hold onto it all year, shall we?
Peace and Platelets,