Friday, December 30, 2005

Visiting the Hospital Wing

What a tiring day today was.  It was another trip to Hershey Medical Center.  

There was lots to do again.  John and I met with the psychiatrist.  He is going to be checking in on John during his stay.  And we met with the head psych nurse.  She will be checking in daily.  In case John has any stress, anxiety or other problems they will be there.  John was told the prednisone would probably make him moody, and they would give him something for it (like an anti depressant).  Wow, it is nice to know in this day and age they have something like this in place for a patient.

We also met for awhile with the nurse coordinator Todd.  John got a chance to ask all the questions he had on his mind.  

He asked about how long the actually transplant would take, which will only be about an hour. 

He asked about the central line that will be put in.  The stem cells (bone marrow) are going to go in through a central line (chest port) which is going to be in his chest.  Before the procedure takes place, an incision will be made in his chest, and tubes will be inserted into his chest.  Then when it is time for the cells to be added (when the transplant occurs), they will be added through the tubes.  The bag of stem cells will be hung from above the bed and drip down through the tubing into the central line and into John's blood stream.  The blood stem cells will go right into the blood stream.  Somehow the stem cells know exactly where to go.  They will travel to where they are supposed to go.  After the procedure, for possibly even weeks or months, the chest port (central line) will be left in John's chest.  It will be used to draw blood, give transfusions or boosters, add additional fluids, or whatever will be necessary.  It will be important to keep it very sanitary, to make sure he doesn't get an infection.  Some people get infections in their chest ports, especially if they still have them in after they have returned home from the hospital.

We also asked for an exact date for the transplant, and he said mid January, and said we would know the date in two or three days.  He said the reason it wasn't pinned down yet, is because "a donor often doesn't know when he can get off of work to donate."  "For instance, he may have to take two days off of work to donate, and has to work it out with his boss."  "And he may be in the military, and not know which two days he can get off yet."  I said, "Oh, ok".  Very interesting I, thought.  Now I am wondering if he is in the military.  Todd went on to stress the annonymity factor and that the donor was going to remain anonymous.  He said he could tell me the city though.  John was out of the room at this time getting bloodwork done and I perked up and said, "Oh, will you tell me what city he is from?".  And he said, "I will not."  "I will not even tell you what state he is from."  "But in one year I will tell you what city he is from."  "Ok, I said."  I told him the only reason I wanted to know was so that I could pray for him, but it didn't really matter, because I could pray for him just as well without knowing where he is from.  

Wow, something just hit me.  He is a male from the US, lol.  He called him a he for several visits, and said he was from a city and state.  And I am wondering if he is in the military.  What a marvelous picture that paints.  At least I know he is a male from the US.  How nice.  I don't know why it matters.  It just does.  He is real now, God bless him a million times over.  No, infinity times over.

Next thing we did was an Advanced Directive.  Basically a Living Will.  John filled out the form, saying what measures he wanted done in case of an emergency and he was incapacitated and not able to tell the doctor.  He named me as the person to make decisions on his behalf if he were unable to speak for himself.  Valerie was listed as a third person if I was unable to be located at any point. 

Finally we went and visited the actual floor where John will stay on when he is hospitalized.  This is the first time we visited the actual Transplant Center.  We have been visiting the Cancer Unit next to the hospital but have never looked at the actual Transplant Center.  

I am glad we went.  This took a lot of the mystery out of it for John.  And for me also.  It was a really nice place.  Everybody was so friendly.  A nurse showed us around.  She explained things.  She wanted to show us a room, but they were all full.  I peaked in, and they looked quite nice.  Each room was single capacity and had a phone, TV and VCR.  And a large chair for company.  There were a bunch of VCRs in the hallway on a cart.  I don't know if John would feel up to watching a movie, but I just mention this to say how thoughtful they were.

When John was leaving a nurse came running up to him and told him she was the head nurse there, and if he had any questions, to phone or email.  Any questions at all.  She also told him to bring a new pillow from home when he came.  

Well, after speaking with her, we said goodbye and took off for home.  It took a long time to get back, but it was still early, so we picked up my Mom and went for Chinese.  It was good.

When we finally got home, I fell into bed from exhaustion and took a couple hour nap.  Funny how these things tire me out physically and emotionally.  But I woke up and John and I went out to get that pillow the nurse mentioned, and an electric razor she mentioned (because you can't use the blade kind), and a tape case to hold his tapes during chemo.  And a travel kit to hold his toilet articles in.  These things must get done before the transplant.  So much to do, so little time!

Oh, this entry has gone on too long!  I should write more often and then these entries won't be as long.  So sorry.

Much love and everything, Krissy :) 


  1. Praying for you and John:)


  2. Praying all will go well for you, John and the donor. Jeannette.

  3. Wow honey, that's a lot of information! I'd be so overwhelmed!  I will be thinking and praying for you and John.  Please keep us updated as you get a second.
    Hugs and prayers,

  4. Thinking of you both. Glad you've got that visit done and dusted. Take care.
    Sylvia xxx

  5. May peace be with you guys. I pray for both of you often. Sounds like you got some great information and are going to a wonderful hospital. Take care, hugs ~Brandie

  6. Well there's certainly a lot going on there.But it's all a step in the right direction and i feel in time John will be bouncing around having been given a new life.The main thing is you must remain positive.I appreciate it must be mighty frustrating for you not knowing when the donor will come forward but hey I'm sure it won't be too long now.I'm sure John will get the best possible help through all of this and you both can take great comfort in knowing we at J Land are all thinking and praying for you both.Keep smiling it'll all be worth it.

  7. Lots going on  for you and John and everything seem to be going in the right direction,  my hopes and prayers are with you both......Ally

  8. It's all moving along Krissy and sounds a very proffessional and caring place.  I think Johns in good hands and it must be such a relief to ask what you've had on your minds for so long. (((( hugs for both of u )))) You'll be in thoughts....and the donor. Rache xx

  9. So glad you and John are getting things lined both are in our prayers...hugs and Happy New Year!  And it will be too!!!  

  10. You seem to be doing well during this process...keep us posted...JAE

  11. MTP, after reading this John's donor has become so much more real to me, and, YES, I LOVE him a million times more over and over and over again!  Interesting how that happens.  A soul can have so much love.... Soooooooooooo proud of you guys!!!!  YTP xoxox

  12. Every thing seems to be moving along according to schedule. It's good to know you have a good team willing to answer all of your questions.

    Hugs my friend,


  13. It would be amazing if it ends up being a soldier from the USA, talk about going above and beyound the call of duty!

    It sounds like the doctors not only have John's physical health taken care of , but his emotional as well.  This is great.

    How bone marrow transplants work is amazing, actually how our bodies work period is amazing.

    Keeping you in my prayers.


  14. yo krissy and john,

     so great to hear about your visit and donor 'ifo'  it is nice to actually see the place u /john will be going.  and what about u ?did they find u a place to stay while john is in bmt?
     cya in chat!!!  big hugs,  patti  aka parrothead

  15. Krissy,
    You have had a day and half.  Lots of learning, and seeking answers to questions, and lots of prepping.  I can feel your peace as you write and it is a wonderful thing.  Because you know God is holding your hands.  

  16. Isn't it wonderful to start to see everything coming together and to know that it is going to happen... and soon! Keeping you guys in my thoughts.

  17. Isn't it wonderful to start to see everything coming together and to know that it is going to happen... and soon! Keeping you guys in my thoughts.

  18. Much love from me to both of you too !  It sounds like everything is going well and soon it will all be history.  What an angel you have in that donor!  I'll be praying for him too !  A very Blessed and Happy New Year to you! 'On Ya' - ma

  19. Isn't it amazing what can be done these days Krissy, I mean with the stem cells knowing exactly where they are needed.  You and John are in my thoughts my dear, wishing you both a Happy New Year, and praying that you have everything you need to keep you strong in the coming months.  ((((()))))
    Sara   x

  20. I have been wondering about the donor too, such a wonderful thing he is doing...
    Happy New Year!!
    Linda :)

  21. Krissy, you are a very strong woman. My heart grew heavy and my tears started flowing not even midway from reading this entry. Rest my friend, John needs you. Praying that John will recover soon. Happy New Year to both of you. May 2006 brings you all the blessings you need and want.