Monday, October 27, 2014

Joan Larson

Sunday February 21, 1993

I took pain pills every 4 hours all night. I don't feel too well when I get up at 9. I eat some yogurt. I go back to bed about 11 for awhile. I call Joan Larson. She has bad news. She now has 5 tumors and has decided to accept her death in about a year. Her other options were surgery to cut off blood supply to the tumors or AZT. Both had terrible side effects. We talk a long time. I understand. She's worried about Hal. He seems to be mentally slipping.

I'm finally up and dressed by 2:30. John March calls me from Arizona. We talk a long time. I read awhile and take a nap.

At dinner I feel awful. I turn off the pump. Later I eat more of last night's egg fu yung.

Joan Larson was our neighbor across the street from the Lemona Avenue house where I grew up in Mission Hills. She died of colon cancer a few months after Mom passed away. After Mom's death she phoned me to tell me how much she appreciated Mom's support and understanding as they battled their cancer together. I didn't know that AZT was ever used to treat cancer so I did a little research on Wikipedia. Today it is used for treatment of AIDS, with little mention of it being a cancer drug. According to Wikipedia, "AZT is the first U.S. government-approved treatment for HIV, marketed under the brand name Retrovir. AZT was the first breakthrough in AIDS therapy, significantly reducing the replication of the virus in patients and leading to clinical and immunologic improvements...Early long-term higher-dose therapy with AZT was initially associated with side effects that sometimes limited therapy, including anemia, neutropenia, hepatotoxicity, cardiomyopathy, and myopathy. All of these conditions were generally found to be reversible upon reduction of AZT dosages."

Junior & Joe

Saturday February 20, 1993

Up at 9 feeling fine until after I eat some cereal and orange juice. My stomach is upset and I just feel weak and tired until 11:30. I'm finally downstairs and ready at 1:45. I have some soup and crackers. We drive to Mission Hills to see how Gary and Maria are doing. We bring Joe and Junior home with us. We drive through Brown's Canyon and stop for ice cream.

The boys watch a basketball game. I read. Gary and Maria pick up the boys about 5:00. I feel pretty good--not great. At dinnertime I send Frank to buy egg foo yung and pork fried rice. I eat a little of it. I'm on pain pills for my shoulder every 4 hours.

My nephews Junior and Joe, pictured above with Mom and my son Justin, were involved in sports from the time they were very young. Both played baseball and basketball throughout school and Junior (now called Gabe) played on the basketball team at CSUM where my son Derek now attends college in Vallejo, California. They are both huge Raiders fans and basketball fans.