“Who’s the Magician here?”
That’s the first question I was asked by my doctor as he walked in the examination room where my daughter Julie and I sat waiting for him. We had never met before even though I had spent a week in the Jewish General Hospital 4 weeks prior to this and he was my doctor.
So if any of you don’t know yet, and are wondering why I haven’t written anything since January, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at the beginning of February. To make a long story as short as possible, I think you know that Phil broke his ankle in late December and was working at home all this time. I looked after the shop all of January. I was used to running up and down the stairs of the shop and would take parcels to send out at the Pharmaprix Post Office across the street. I thought nothing of it.
Then, in early February I noticed I was out of breath when I got to the top of the stairs. I called our family doctor. He said to come in immediately, sent me for X-rays and sent me directly to emergency as he said there was water in my lungs and it had to be drained. I thought it would be a few hour session. I got in, but never got out. I went from test to test, had a CAT scan, biopsy, more X-rays, etc. When I was done with the CAT Scan, after drinking 3 glasses of barium, I was told to drink lots and lots of water. One of the men who handed me barium asked me if he looked familiar. I said no. He said I looked familiar to him but didn’t know from where. About 10 minutes later he came back.
“Are you Perfect Magic?” he asked.
“Yes, but I don’t remember you. Sorry.”
” I haven’t been there lately but I did take courses with Guy Camirand and was there often then.”
“That was years ago,” I said. “you’ll have to come back now.”
“I will, and give my regards to Phil.”
So to get back on track, I had to drink lots and lots of water. Someone put me on a gurney and took me back to emergency to go for more tests. When I got to where we were going I asked the doctor there if I could have some water as I just drank 3 glasses of barium.
“Not one drop,” was his answer.
“But I just had barium.”
“I don’t care what you had. Not one drop of water. Not today and not tomorrow. No food. No water.”
So here I am fasting for 2 days. And I thought Yom Kippur was hard. I hadn’t eaten since the night before, except for the barium, if you can call that eating. It took a week for my lungs to drain. Then they gave me Chemo, which I thought took about an hour, but Julie, who was by my side through most of this ordeal, said it was about 6 hours and I slept through the whole thing. She caught up on her Netflix programs during that time. I had a huge private room in the new K-wing with a huge bathroom and shower. It was like a hotel, but I don’t recommend it, although all the nurses and doctors, and social workers that came around were incredible. One hears all these horror stories about how long it takes to get into a hospital, so maybe it was magic. Who knows.
So when the doctor asked “Who’s the magician here?” I said, “Everyone here is a magician.” He laughed and nodded.
The good news is that all my results were good. I have 2 more rounds of chemo (once every 3 weeks) and then I will have a robotic operation, and then 3 more rounds of chemo and he said by August my treatment is complete.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch (Perfect Magic), Phil still can’t drive or take a chance on falling on ice etc, so Julie takes him to the shop and picks him up. Phil is there every Tuesday and Thursday from 12:30 to 4:30 pm. If you can’t make it at that time, and you need something, phone him as some of our customers have done, and tell him and he will make special arrangements for you. Also you can order on line. We appreciate your support, especially during this difficult time.
Right now I am feeling extremely well and wouldn’t know I had cancer if I didn’t know it. Of course that will change tomorrow after my Chemo, but I’ll be back to “normal” after a week. I did not have a bad reaction after my first bout and hope it will be the same after my second bout. Because of my cancer, which at one time would have been a death sentence, I included my doctor as a magician, as he said my treatment would be complete by August, which I interpreted as “my cancer would be gone”. He didn’t say that but if that turns out to be the case, he qualifies as a magician in my books.