Pedal Another Mile

Bicycling, death, life after death.


Let's get what's becoming routine out of the way - Billy Jo woke up (early today - 10:30) and by 10:50 was dry heaving into the toilet. Bad, because it hurts her muscles, "good" because none of yesterday's liquids or the bit of soup she ate late yesterday came up.

I got out of the house to run a few errands - going to the bank and to Target.

Let's stray a bit here for a moment. As you know if you've been reading all along, Billy Jo is still taking Tamoxifen. It's our "$300 million megamillions ticket" - you buy it knowing you likely won't "win", but it has no side effects so why not? Well, it's considered a treatment medication and therefore not covered under insurance while in hospice. I filled the prescription 30 days ago at Walgreens and it was $71. I got $34 back by remembering that we have a "prescription savings card" through the Kendall County Farm Bureau (we're members in order to have Country Insurance for our homeowners policy). So it was $37 for a 30 day supply.

My sister is a pharmacy tech for Target. Guess what? A 30-day supply of Tamoxifen with no insurance at Target costs $9. Let that sink in - Walgreens: $71. Target: $9. Fuck you Walgreens. I'm done with you. All my meds (even the ones through insurance) are going through Target from now on, insurance or not. Shame on you for marking something up that much that is used to treat women with cancer. ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU DO THIS SHIT.  Are you supporting awareness, or just fishing for a whole new group of uninsured cancer patients to rob? Fuckers.

OK, off my soapbox (for now). When I got back, Billy Jo was pooping again! Twice the size of Wednesday! It helped her feel a bit better, so that's good. No puke session immediately followed either, so that's good too. The hospice nurses came and changed the Dilaudid cartridge in the CADD pump. We also talked with them about stopping some of the stomach related meds because it seems they're not doing much, and sometimes directly leading to her issues. So we stopped the colace, switched Prevacid and Reglan to 'as needed', and kept the Senna at 'as needed'. We'll see how this goes for awhile.

She ate about 1/3 cup of soup and it's still down. She's been asleep since just before 7:00 - mainly because she was up "early" today. She seems to have eight waking hours in her every day. No surprise, as there's nowhere near enough calories to provide the energy needed for more. Hell, I'd be sleeping 22 hours a day on 100 calories. I don't know how she does it. I 'get' the not eating part (it's part of the dying process) - I don't get the amount of energy she has.

In other news, we asked Lena, who organized the meal train, to send an email out to suspend it indefinitely. We are forever grateful to Lena for the idea and organization and to all the people who prepared and delivered meals to us - it was one less thing for us to worry about during a hectic time. But the time has come where the freezers are both full, and it's really just me eating now. I'll have meals for another three weeks just off the frozen stuff. After that, I can cook a thing or two, and then there's always Lean Cuisine! We just don't want people to have to continue to cook for us since the situation has changed so greatly the past few weeks. Just come by and visit, empty handed - we will welcome you just the same.  But again - thank you SO MUCH from both of us.

Had a short talk about my mental state with Billy Jo before she fell asleep. I'm tired. I'm scared. I know she's dying, I know there's no changing or stopping it, but I get these flashes every day now that make me feel like you do when you narrowly avoid a car accident. I'd call it a panic attack if it lasted longer than 15 seconds. It's just a flash of fear. Why? What's causing it? I'm trying hard to remain "normal" around her and friends, but it's sort of hard to be happy-go-lucky 24/7 when death is near. Yesterday I had a talk with my sister and repeated what I told her to Billy Jo tonight - I feel like we are on the longest plane crash ever. We know the ground is coming.

Add to that the last few days I wake up at 1am to give her her dose of methadone and am relieved she's still alive, hand outstretched to accept the pill. I knew I forgot to tell Erin something during the session yesterday. Shit. Erin - if you're reading this, remind me next week :)

Maybe I need to talk to my doc about increasing my dosages of my anti-anxiety meds. If I do, I'll make sure if he does he sends the prescription to Target. Because fuck Walgreens, that's why.