1/28/15 – Hump Day

Today is Wednesday.  The Wednesday before my second stem cell transplant.  On Monday I will be admitted to University of Pennsylvania Hospital for the procedure.

It has been a long, trying week.

It is really tough being compromised from the femur surgery.  I am walking much better with the cane but I don’t know when I will truly be able to walk normally again.  I am looking forward to seeking out the surgeons when I get to Penn for a follow up.

It is tough not being able to participate as a fully functioning family member.  Setting the table, doing the dishes, taking care of the dog, laundry … all of the things that I can’t stand doing regularly I would LOVE to be able to do now.

Over the weekend I missed the Bar Mitzvah of great friends of ours because I didn’t want to compromise myself.  My number one goal is to be healthy and strong for Monday.  As I said, I don’t cry a lot but I did on Saturday as I watched Helene and the kids get ready and dressed up then off to the party …. without me.

I try to be “normal” – I have been to a couple of Victor’s basketball games but even then there is a slight degree of paranoia when I see people I know or have known for some time.  I am different.  I look different.  I haven’t been to the gym, lifted weights, kick boxed or had any form of exercise since September or October.  My adult life, I have usually weighed anywhere between 208 and 218.  When I started chemotherapy I ballooned up to 245 from a combination of the steroids and fluids.  Now?  I am somewhere around 200.  My appetite is good.  I eat a ton.  I am just on the Cancer diet I guess.

So my goal is to stay healthy until Monday.  My goal is to live normally in the moments between the pain.  Yesterday was great. Tuesday.  Kids were snowed in from school from the blizzard.  We watched a movie as a family.  I worked a ton.  Paid the bills.  I was able to help Victor with a project in the basement with my tools.  After that, I got my ass kicked in Madden Xbox by him as well.  Living for those moments when things are “normal” in between the pain.  Around 10:00 PM, the pain kicked in again.  And again, I was back in Cancer mode.

So today, Wednesday, “hump day” I feel really good.  I have a campaign I am working on for work.  Victor has a game tonight and so far …. all is well.  I made it through the first half of the week.  Got over the hump.  We are not that far away from relief.

Love to all…

27 responses to “1/28/15 – Hump Day

  1. Hang in there mate your blogs are inspiring we are praying and rooting for you you can do it take it slow one day at a time.

    Our prayers and thoughts are with you every day and reading your blog this morning truly changed my perception of today, my objectives for today and I’m going to reach out to more people to help them just because you’ve inspired me so.

    With love and blessings

    Cheers,

  2. Inspire or be inspired. Thats my motto. Do that every day and that is a great day!! You are providing people many great days amd in doing that you give yourslef great days!!! Stay Strong!!!!

  3. Thank you for sharing your struggle, for letting us in and allowing us to be here with you, a part of this. You’re not removed from our collective life – you are very much a part of it, another side of it, as enriching and love-filled as the celebrations and the games. You’re in it. You’re with us – every celebration, every day. And when you’re home healing and taking care of yourself, you’re just showing us how it’s done. We love you.

  4. Sorry to hear that you don’t like using a cane. I can fix that for you. We’ll get you a top hat a fancy carved masculine wood cane and you’ll be the envy of all your friends. It will work for the next 20 years and then we’ll have to figure out some other gimmick. Good luck, you are such a great inspiration. Hugs, Rochelle Golen, Chicago

    >

  5. Stay strong. You have an amazing amount of courage and strength- and with the love and support of your family and friends- and great care of your medical team you will get through this!

  6. Today I woke up a bit down, the reason is not important, but I just read your blog, and decided no down time for me. Not when I am so inspired by your strength your courage and your spirit. You get knocked down and come up stronger each time . Jeffrey and I are in awe of you. Keep up the fight. You ARE GOING TO WIN!!!! We send love, hugs and prayers Joni & Jeff

  7. We’re just over the bridge if you need Michael to stop by Penn and either cheer you up or be a pain in your ass!

  8. Brad-
    Oh, the hills and valleys we traverse with this cancer! And, you have done your share over the last few months. Remember that you had the surgery on your leg just a few weeks ago. It takes time to recover from surgery and to rehab the leg. Hopefully you will be able to do some good physical therapy for the leg once you are on the road to recovery from the upcoming ASCT.
    Keep looking forward and don’t dwell on your current limitations or self imposed absence from activities with large groups of people. You will come out on the other side being able to participate in life again.
    Have a good rest of your week. Many people will be praying for you and sending you lots of healing energy next week.
    Nancy in Phila

  9. These are the kinds of things that seperate “the men from the boys”. I agree with Lauren Brad. Don’t ever give up as you ARE an inspiration to us all.

  10. Brad, for the first time your post actually got me angry and as I thought about it I needed to share that with you. You stated here that you “are different” because you appear different at ball games and because of what you can or cannot do. You are 100% wrong. Who you are is NEVER determined by what you can or cannot do. You still are and always will be the same Brad Coustan. Do not ever forget that. Just keep fighting no matter how tough it gets and don’t worry about the rest of that crap.

  11. Happy Hump Day! Stay strong and good luck at U Penn next week! You got this. Thank you for inspiring me to appreciate the dishes, and the laundry and day to day stuff

  12. Brad, always thinking of you and your family. Esp.now that you are going through another SCT. Lots of prayers coming your way. You inspire me to fight harder and not get down about our situations. Good luck next week!

  13. My thoughts and prayers continue to follow you…….good luck on the stem cell transplant.xxxx cousin Ruth

  14. WE pray for your return to goodhealth. WE say mishebarachs for the little boy who has grown into a fine man. You inspire everyone with your blog and the way you are handling a terrible illness.THE GREENYS ALL SEND LOVE.

  15. You, Helene and the kids are always in our thoughts & prayers! Please know you are a role model to many! Ox, Karen

  16. We love you Brad. You are an amazing role model for your family, friends and the community at large. Best of luck next Monday.

  17. Hang in there Brad. After Monday it will get better! Love ya Uncle Robert and the Friedman Gang. PS: Oh yeah, my mom wanted me to give you a big hug when I see you.

  18. Dear Brad, we are thinking of you and wishing you well. With your great attitude, cancer will be concurred. Good luck. Love and hugs, Uncle Herb and Aunt Roberta

  19. Brad, your strength and willpower are amazing qualities that I know will allow you to get through this very difficult time in your life. I know from my own struggles that they only lead to a more wonderful life as you concur this hurdle. Your gratitude for the wonderful family & daily life you have created with such incredible support will continue to give you the power to overcome this. I send you love, support & healing energy from all of our family!
    All our love,
    Rachel & the entire Schacht family!

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