Thursday, June 19, 2014

I walk

About two years ago, I was diagnosed with a pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor.  Five weeks later, I underwent a Whipple procedure to remove it.  I was in ICU for four days.  On the first day that I was transferred to a telemetry unit, my surgeon told me that he wanted me to start walking around the unit three times a day.  So I walked.  With my heart monitor in one hand and my spouse holding my IV pole, I walked.  With complications which required another surgery, I was in the hospital for just under one month.  Except for the day of the second surgery, I got up and walked around the unit three times a day, every day.  

When I got home, I had serious digestive difficulties.  My cousin, an EMT, told me that walking was very good for digestive problems.  So I walked.  First I walked, shakily, forty feet to the mailbox and back to the house, with a friend watching anxiously from the doorway.  When I accomplished that, I walked to the end of the street and back.  Then I did that three times a day.  By the time my recovery was complete enough for me to go back to work I was walking two miles a day.

 When I was a patient, I found the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network helpful and supportive.  Now that I am a volunteer, I am able to take part in Purple Stride, the annual walk-a-thon which provides patient support, legislative advocacy and research dollars to conquer pancreatic cancer.  I have been lucky to survive and thrive.  So I’ll walk.

1 comment:

Susan F said...

Bravo, Leslie! I can't wait for the next time we are able to walk together again! Walks are healing for us all.