Still Hacking Side Effect Management!

Can you believe this?  My Wendy grilled me like a cheese sandwich yesterday!!!  Candidly… I had it coming.

Seriously though, she didn’t “grill me,” but she went “Mom” on me cuz she cares.

We’re figuring out how to deal with all hydration, nutrition, and medication needs that have befallen us cuz of the side effects of cancer treatment.

“Gotta get your 96 ounces of fluids a day.”

“Gotta get your 2000 calories a day.”

“Gotta get all them drugs in each day (which includes dissolving some of the drugs in water first).”

“AND… gotta get all that through a tube that bypasses your throat and dumps straight into your stomach.”

Hey!!! Normal chewers, grazers, and drinkers?  You may not fully appreciate the everyday task of eating and drinking.  You ever try polishing off a Caramel Macchiato through a Peg Tube while you’re driving in the city?  Nor have I, but my days of eating and drinking while driving, working at the computer, watching TV will be suspended until October.  Hydration, nutrition, and medicine consumption have become singular, time consuming activities.

Yesterday morning, I had a plan to get the hydration and medicine daily needs met.  I did not give thought to the nutrition part of the equation until my Wendy got home.  Her lovingly correction started like this.

“I will talk… you will listen.”

She went on to explain that she sees in my face that I am still losing weight, and that I have not figured out the nutrition part of the equation.  I listened, and offered no argument. It was time to solve the weight loss problem. Bare in mind that all food intake goes through the tube.

I have water and the meds set up at a workstation in our bathroom.  I see my little workstation each time I am in the bathroom. I have alarms set to remind me to review the daily medicine progress and act accordingly.  Unfortunately, the food was “out of sight, out of mind.”

We bought nutrition shakes and protein drinks and put them in our pantry.  Guess who doesn’t go the pantry these days? Yep… the guy that needs them shakes!!!  We moved all the shakes to the bathroom workstation. Now I see them each time the alarm signals me to act, or when I pass through that area.

I use an 8 ounce shake as a carrier for the drugs, then pass water through the tube to clean it out.  It should be a lot easier to get the hydration, nutrition, and medicines in each day when I see all that must be done.  It sounds like such a simple solution to an elementary problem, and it is.

Unfortunately, you may not be so quick to see the elementary when you must learn how to meet your daily hydration, nutrition, and medicine needs without chewing and drinking.

Then… it becomes a real challenge to change the way you’ve done things for the past five decades!


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