COVID 19 - the world changes

Coronavirus has turned most of the world upside down as we know it.
We are provided a new reality that many can’t comprehend. But, being selfish – what does it mean to me?

Working from home with Cancer

My new reality is that I have spent the last month working from home. I went to the office – once – on a saturday to pick up a few things, and reconfigure the work laptop for better connectivity to the work networks.
Turns out working from home is not as easy as I expected it to be.

Home office Version 1.0 (feature image), was quickly adapted to version 2.0, which went a few configuaration changes to adjust for video conference lighting.

At configuration 2.5, I decided it was best to give the dining room table back to eating.

garage home office laptops motorcycle

I had high hopes for Version 3.
It had access to my largest beer fridge, stereo, great backdrop, and a very quiet co-worker, who I didn’t need to be afraid of drinking my beer.

But, the tragedy of this was too far away from my house to have good enough wifi signal for video conferencing.

I had to amend and am now in the basement and calling it Version 4.0. I had previously held one video conference in that location ( around Version 2.3 stage), using the cat scratch tower as a laptop/camera platform.

Working from home brought new challenges that have helped me realize – when I grow up, I don’t think I really want a work from home future. Everything changes. For example:
Coffee – Work has a keurig, at home I have a French Press as I only make my coffee 2 times a week at home. But that is now 7, and its more time taken to have a coffee, but the benefit is – I really, really, like the coffee at the home office better than the work office..
Pets – every time I sit down, I have forgotten to let the cat in or out. Get back up, refill coffee, sit down, get up…. sigh.


But thats all fun and games – it takes me longer to do things, but the BIG REALITY is: We are in a pandemic.

Back to Cancer…….

I am supposed to have my next cystoscopy, its due in May(so 15-45 days). I haven’t heard if/when it is scheduled, or if it will be delayed. I am 6 months between -scopys now, so I believe that I need not be too concerned about a delay of a few months. I think I would get concerned if it went to a year.

So, of course I have consulted Dr. Google many times about my situation and COVID 19.
3.5 years of immunotherapy, couple years since last treatment – what does that mean?
Well, based on all the newsletters, articles, and everything else I can read, the results seem “inconclusive”.
The articles use vocabulary that doesn’t evoke feelings of confidence and strength. They use terms like “should” and “believe”. I know that every patient and every cancer is different.
The big question that I don’t find the answer to – does past immunotherapy make is easier for me to catch a coronavirus, or change my survivability if I am infected?

My uneducated theory is that it is easier for me to catch. I spend all winter with the cold/flu anyway now – so, I would think that it would be easier for me to become infected. But, being younger than the average Bladder Cancer patient, and in relatively good health – I should survive it.

I treat this as a poker game or even a military decision. Assess the risks by reviewing probablity/likelihood of the situation occuring, and the consequences of the situation unfolding. Then look at the mitigation strategy.
Short answer is – I can work from home, and accomplish most of what I could in a 8 hours day at work in 10-12 hours at home. That reduces the probability.
The reality is – even though I am confident that my age, overall health, and time since last treatment, puts me in the better side of the survivability scale, I think I need to avoid proving that I am capable of surviving it.

The consequences of being wrong – just aren’t worth the inconvienence of being overly cautious now.

What else have I learned

The shorter form blogs that I have talked about doing – I could do.
What I realized is that this isn’t the best topic for blog posts.

The reason I say this – is that I have now essentially been writing an almost daily blog – 5-6 days a week, to the men and women of my unit, for 22 (23rd is tomorrow) of the 28 days since we started this new work from home model.
It made me realize that it is easier to write when I know what the audience is looking for. My challenge with this blog has always been, trying to keep it relevant to my cancer journey, so that my subject/audience is Cancer related.

It brings me back to something I heard on an entrprenuerial podcast – can’t remember which one – if I remember, I will most certainlly credit it.
“Find your buyer first” is the quote.
Which tells me that I have done this blog backwards – here I decided I have a product, that I wanted to provide, and had to go find an audience. But, with sending a unit email there is an audience that I am providing a service to.

I don’t think enough happens in my cancer journey anymore to justify more cancer posts.

thanks for reading along on this journey. I hope your easter weekend goes well in our new self isolation mode. Over this weekend I will be toasting to my friend Hutch who left us last year.
Feel free to follow and share my various social media outlets –
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Happy easter, and good luck as the world tries to find “its new normal”.