The Next Step

A lot has happened since my last post. We finished my fifth round of chemo at the 10 day mark, on Thursday, March 31st. After that my blood counts had pretty much tanked and I developed a neutropenic fever that put me in the hospital on Saturday, April 2nd. I was put back on the 16th floor of the NYU Hospital, which is my favorite place to be if I have to go to the hospital because I think the nurses there do a great job, but that is still a small consolation for being cooped up in the hospital for several days! Luckily they were able to snag the big TV for me again so we had a decent TV to watch the final game of the NCAA Tournament on… Even if it wasn’t much of a game.

I think the worst part about being in the hospital is the food. At times it is manageable, but usually it is barely edible. I really don’t understand why that has to be the case. It doesn’t cost much to make something edible, just a decent recipe. Obviously they put a lot of money into the food that they supply, why can’t they put a few dollars more into the salary of someone who can actually do a decent job in the kitchen!?? Having to be in the hospital obviously means that things aren’t going great right then, but it would seem to me that having some decent food available could be a small pick-me-up for guests that have an extended stay and could be one of those little things that help set a hospital apart from the rest. But I’ll let that rest. Haha.

My stay on the 16th floor was good and my nurses took good care of me. I was basically just there while my white counts were bottomed out, getting antibiotics until my fever went away and my body could defend itself. I got out on Tuesday, April 5th. During this time and over the next few days I read all 3 of the Stieg Larsson books that are so popular right now, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest. It took me a while to get into the first one, but after that they were basically one long story and pretty quick reads. I thought they were pretty good.

I have been meeting with a prosthetist since shortly after my surgery and have been wrapping my leg in ace bandages to shrink it and push out the fluids in preparation for getting a temporary prosthesis. On Friday (April 8th) we had a meeting with him and a rehab doctor and they were both very pleased with the size of my leg, saying that I had actually shrunk it much more than they had anticipated! I was asking a lot of questions about getting running legs and how long it would take before I could start swinging a golf club and getting my game back together and the rehab doctor laughed and said to maybe slow down a little bit because, “We have to literally teach you how to walk before you can run.” I thought that was pretty funny. And while I do recognize that that is the case, I think I’m going to pick it up faster than he is anticipating!

Yesterday we met with my prosthetist one more time for final leg measurements that he will now send off in order to have my first socket made. He also gave us some exciting news! He said that he didn’t see any point in doing the whole temporary prosthesis thing with me and is going to go ahead and put me on a C-Leg, which will be my first leg! It’s not a temporary prosthesis, we’re jumping straight into the real deal, which I am really excited about! I never saw the point in wasting time with a temporary, and I am happy that he is on board with that mindset! The C-Leg is pretty awesome. It is a microprocessor leg that is programmed to match a natural gait and protect against stumbling, etc. Here is a link to more info on it if you feel like checking it out: C-LEG INFO.

What a great Masters this year! My dad brought back a bunch of shirts and hats and said they had a great time. I also had him look around the course and confirm what I thought I had noticed in previous years… At certain spots around the course there are handicap seating areas in prime locations next to greens and tee boxes, etc. I plan on absolutely making use of those spots next year! No more fighting for a good seat for me! Combine that with my handicap parking sticker, and I am already seeing some sweet benefits to all of this! Haha.

My Aunt Joan is having surgery today (April 12), so please keep her in your prayers. Her surgery is at 1:00 at Piedmont Hospital.

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7 Responses to The Next Step

  1. john hawkins says:

    Rob, You really are an inspiration to all of us here in the Hawkins family. Your attitude is to be admired and respected!!!!!! You are always in our thoughts and prayers John, Barbara and Hunter

  2. peggy redfern says:

    The C-leg looks awesome! Can’t wait to hear about you breaking all kinds of recovery records. You’re off to a great start!

  3. marques says:

    Hey man! C-leg does sound/look pretty cool. Have you seen the movie Planet Terror? That chick gets a machine gun for a leg. You should talk to them about it.
    Glad you’re hanging in there!


  4. Jennifer Moreman says:

    Thinking of you Rob! So enjoy your positive spirit! The up-close spots are great! I have been using the mommy to be spots at cvs and target!

  5. Jarret Wade says:

    Man I just spent 16 days in, neutropenic fevers/collapsed lung and an infection. Definitely thankful to God to have made it out of that one. Congrats on the progress man, C-Leg looks amazing! Has the bleeding calmed down at all since the older posts?


  6. angela says:

    I read all 3 of the books too, they were really engrossing. They made movies of them (in Swedish) that are ok – worth watching since you a) have time and b) just read the books. The 1st and 2nd stick to the story pretty well, but the 3rd one leaves out a whole bunch. Still worth watching. They are making an English version in Hollywood right now that is supposed to be pretty awesome, Daniel Craig is Mikael and some other big names too

  7. ken reeves says:

    Congrat you will be up and moving in no time.

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