Kevin's Dead Cat

After surgery sliced off an entire tumor and 1/3 of my tongue, plus six weeks of radiation therapy, I've been re-learning how to eat, drink, and talk with my newly re-constructed tongue and coping with side effects. But the cancer came back and I don't know what's going to happen next.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

I don't want life to imitate art. I want life to be art.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Happy Birthday, Allan.

It's actually on the 22nd, but we ambushed him at Cole's last night. Like last year, he got a cake topped with Laker bobble-heads. This year, identifying the players was a challenge. No pictures, unfortunately. It was all last minute because Allan has gotten a lot more paranoid around the big day. But Ali insists on celebrating whether Allan wants to or not (isn't that what friends are for?).

My brother dropped off the Chinese herbal medicine last night. It's a big box of 10ml vials I'm supposed to take throughout the day on an empty stomach. My meals and medicine intake will be completely regimented. I'm supposed to avoid crab, chicken skin, chiles and alcohol. But garlic, mushrooms, vinegar, and bean products are supposed to be good. I just took one of the vials. Tastes exactly like you would expect medicinal herbs to taste like: echhhhhh.

I've been reading "The Anatomy of Hope" by J. Groopman, MD. It's on my ever growing reading list. After reading the different stories of cancer patients who either lived or died, I think about my blog; am I chronicling the way I lived or the way I died?

Nothing is certain. Mostly I still have hope. And on moments when I have none, there are plenty of people around to loan me theirs. Planning a wedding instead of a funeral helps a lot. Planning for things months away, like visiting James' family in August, building a 2nd floor mezzanine in my studio, and checking out the tail end of the Venice Biennale helps more.

When I broke the news to Ali he said, "But who's going to teach my daughters how to handle players?" He was only half joking. I almost cried. But looking forward to things like watching my friends' kids grow up makes the probability of really bad chemotherapy side effects worth it.

There are too many things worth sticking around for.


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