by Peter Freyne
Let me tell ya', this is a smile one wants to see in person.
Eric Pillemer M.D. is an oncologist up at the Mary Fanny Hospital in Burlington. He spends his long working day treating people like me - people who have cancer. He's also a tree-farmer, a Christian and a guy who twice voted for George W. Bush for president [but now realizes that was a mistake].
I was out to the Fanny Allen in Colchester Monday for some nuclear medicine - one more PET Scan of the Freyne guts to see where things are after seven months of chemotherapy treatments. It's a 35-minute picture taking session before which one's injectedwith radioactive material that will stand out for the scanner.
My Wednesday appointment [today] to see the Doc and get the results got moved up to midday Tuesday. Tuesday is my busy "Inside Track" Deadline Day, so the run up Burlington's Hospital Hill to FAHC was sandwiched in between "Sex and the Governor's Race" and Patrick Leahy, Alberto Gonzales and Ingmar Bergman.
Mes amis, the "news" still hasn't completely sunk in, and probably won't for a few days.
Doc Pillemer is a straight-talking kind of guy. My kind of guy. No beating around the bush - he communicates very clearly and has had no problem with me tape-recording my visits. In fact, everyone should think about recording one's important doctor visits because the emotions tend to rule in moments that cover matters like this. Trust me - it can be tough for the Ol' Brain to get the whole picture.
Pillemer popped the PET scan pictures up on the computer screen - the "before" taken back in January [right] when I was one sick puppy en route to the next life, and the "after" taken on Monday.
The one in January had a big, fist-sized chunk of bright yellow stuff filling my upper abdomen. Not good.
The one from Monday, however, showed not a single spot of the radioactive material highlighted anywhere. Not a drop!
"Complete remission," were the words that tumbled out of Doc Pillemer's mouth. Two words I'm sure he loves to be able to utter: "COMPLETE" and "REMISSION."
"Come back in three months for a check-up," he said.
Thanks, Doc. And thank you, dear friends and readers, for your prayers and support; your notes, cards, e-mails and good vibes.
Could not have made it through without you.
A new chapter has begun.