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Posted 2020-03-18T22:06:00Z

Fighting terminal cancer in the age of SARS-CoV-2

The entire world has just involuntarily adopted my lifestyle of quarantining at home, worrying about germs and wondering if we will be alive in 2 months.  It is amazing how a virus, a little strand of RNA that is not even technically alive, brought the world to its knees.  The threat of SARS-CoV2 has shifted everything.  I was hoping that right after writing this blog post I would be booking trips.  Bruce took spring quarter at 50%time, we planned to visit Italy and take a biking trip in Seattle.  Boy do I know how to pick a vacation spot!  And of course, Oxford, to lobby the related research groups on Cannabinoid Oncology.  Now, for what is likely my last remission, I will be stuck at home.  Don't get me wrong, I have a beautiful house and garden, which I so grateful for.  But I have been on soft quarantine during most of last year during chemo.  And now, just as my immunity is recovering the entire planted is on lockdown for longer than anyone wants to admit.   It is not how I wanted to spend my year.  

During this last testing period, I cut back my dosing, hoping to find the bare minimum of Cannabinoids that would keep Porlock knocked back. My blood work showed a tiny increase in my CA125, from 2.9 to 4.2.  So it seems I need to up my dose a bit.  I will try a new regime of 3xDay to keep the levels in my bloodstream consistent, totalling about 25 MG THC along with many mg of THCA, CBD, CBDA and CBG.  It has been difficult to stick to a precise dosing regime as my medication supply has been "interrupted" and I was forced to change products. More on that in a later post.  

What is my prognosis if I catch COVID 19.  On paper, I only have a year to live.  In a pandemic, when a crush of patients are clogging the hospital, would they even try and save me?  Almost every way I look at the current situation it feels like I am on a sinking ship.  The walls are closing in.  The enemy is at the gate.  The germs are everywhere.  My naturally pollyannish brain has been in overdrive desperately trying to spin this into a positive.  It may sound weird but the fact that I could die of this new virus is actually, in a twisted way, hopeful?  I have spent the last four years preparing to die of cancer.  But the chance, even remote, that I could die of something else just shows nothing is predestined.  We do not know what the future brings, so I try to find hope and march on.  And by marching on I mean pacing around the kitchen and living room, in between washing my hands. 

If you want to geek out on the science of pandemics, here are a few links that I have found interesting in the past three weeks..... short animated video explaining  Social Distancing

A fabulous pandemic daily update video.  Some days he gets technical, but always concise and clear, with well-curated primary source links.     

A great pandemic Modeling paper

A housekeeping note. PostHope is closing this website in 3 months.  In the coming weeks I will move the blog to www.Schedule1Movie.Com        And speaking of the movie, well, that certainly didn't turn out how I wanted. The premiere was scheduled for the last weekend in LA, the website suggests it was going ahead as planned, with extra cleaning.  I wonder if anyone was actually in attendance.  I will let schedule 1 sit on the shelf a bit and put in on youtube in a few weeks when the world is sick of obsessing about COVID.  But anyone who wants the link and password just email me.  

Virtual hug, MK 

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Comments (11)

  • Judy Boyd
    Judy Boyd

    Needless to say, I can totally relate to everything you wrote. I’m sure, with my age and my myeloma, if it comes to triaging, I’d be out on the iceberg. But I can only count on this day and look for its pleasure and beauty. I know you do the same. You have been an inspiration all along, even before I was diagnosed. Blessings and strength to you, Michelle. You are a wonder, definitely one of today’s pleasures and beauty. ❤️

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Jorgia bordofsky
    Jorgia bordofsky

    Love your photo and salient comments on your illness and the state of our world. You are amazing and a beacon of hope and sanity in this troubled world. You're living the life. Hugs. Jorgia

    3 years ago · Reply
  • James Cavins
    James Cavins

    We are all experiencing the anguish and panic of the pandemic, but that hardly compares to your battle with Porlock. Good to hear of the low level of ca-125. I hope it’s easy to push the dose of cannabis a bit. We are all hunckering down with you and we are all reminded of you every day and night. Virtual hugs and real love to you.

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Heller Lee
    Heller Lee

    It's just insane. Here you were, fighting your own battle for survival, when the globe decided to throw you this biggest of curve balls. If you are going to have limited time (although I'm hoping that the cannabis extends that time very far!), you want to be living life, not locked in. Now -- not so much. But we can go on walks together, if you want. SIx feet apart, but together in real time!

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Laurel Lyle
    Laurel Lyle

    Can you please be our president??!! You, woman, know how to communicate.

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Patty Tunnicliffe
    Patty Tunnicliffe

    Virtual hug back at you Michelle, mighty warrior! So many stand with you and you have been and will continue to be an inspiration and hope for many, many others. Perhaps that is part of the good that can come out of times like this. Your light burns very, very brightly as does your indomitable will and spirit. Both Fred and I send our love!

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Molly

    Love reading your beautiful words, Michelle! I am grateful to have you in my life. Tell Bruce hi for me!

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Mary Ellen Tiffany
    Mary Ellen Tiffany

    While sharing your frustration and vulnerability you continue to inspire me with your strength and determination. I hope somehow, someway you and Bruce can be off exploring soon. In the meantime, many virtual and healing hugs being sent your way.

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Gordon Fox
    Gordon Fox

    Michelle, your words are inspirational even though you've been thrown a load of shit, not to put too fine a point on it. Now isn't the time for us to pop over for a visit, but I hope we can Skype with you soon . . .

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Kyle Feldman
    Kyle Feldman

    Hi Michelle..... I can feel the frustration and hurt in your post. It all seems so remarkably unexplainable. I keep wondering why and I just never feel like anything I think of is a reasonable answer, I'm sorry it is so hard. Hard every day. Hard every time your eyes flutter open until you can go to sleep again. I wish it was different and will continue to keep you and Bruce in my prayers. Continuing the walk along with you in HOPE.

    3 years ago · Reply
  • Maria C
    Maria C

    Michelle, my dear. For some reason I've stopped receiving notifications when you post, but I'm still here! The links you posted were extremely edifying and the most scientific ones I've seen - thanks. Although the path I am on is very different from yours, I too feel many of the same things, just for different reasons. It isn't fair, it's scary, and why why why does it have to be this way? I take heart that people are paying attention and so many (especially those in charge at state, local, and corporate levels, as well as regular citizens) are taking the social distancing thing seriously. It gives me hope that the majority of cases are mild, even though I know that some of us incur greater risk factors (you of course. my dad has 4! and even I am at higher risk). I am grateful for every person who does their part to keep us safe. Fingers crossed over the start of vaccine trials I am concentrating a lot on serenity these days, and getting it in weird ways - middle-of-the-night live cams of bird feeders in Europe, out-of-the-blue text messages from friends, mundane things like cleaning my living room, and succeeding at buying toilet paper. :-) Hang in there. I do think you will travel again, and you are a warrior for sure, who has and can beat odds. Keep on Pollyanning. It's in your favor. Big virtual hugs.

    3 years ago · Reply