unknown caller

This evening, as I was preparing to head home from a long day of working in the theater’s shop/rehearsal space/storage facility, my cell phone began to ring. The caller was unidentified and the display read “unknown caller.” I hate that. I rarely pick up such calls, ignoring them and sending them to voicemail. But, because preparations for our upcoming show (which loads in a week from today), I have been taking all of my calls, since any one of them may be a desperate plea from a designer or something. So, I picked up.

“Hello, Michael?” said the voice on the other end, breaking up due to a weak signal.

“Hello?” I said.

“Is this Michael?” And with this, the voice became familiar. It was Dr. Arbaje, my oncologist. My heart rate quickened. Why is he calling me unexpectedly like this? Were the results of my PET scan that bad? Good news, as they say, sleeps in — it doesn’t come at 6:30 in the evening, after the good doctor should be at home with his family. Well, it wasn’t good news, but it wasn’t all bad, either.

Apparently, the results of my PET scan were a cause of some confusion for Arbaje. The tumors that were in my right lung prior to chemo are certainly gone, but there appears to be another collection of something that might be cancerous in what Arbaje referred to as my “chest wall.” He isn’t certain what it is, though, which seems to be a common reaction to my cancer. No one is certain why things are unfolding the way they are.

After examining my past and present PET scans and CT scans, Arbaje spoke with an oncologist at the University of Indiana (or was it Indiana University?) who is particularly knowledgeable about testicular cancer. The consensus at this point seems to be “wait and see.” The plan, as of now, is to test my blood regularly (every three or four weeks) and keep close tabs on me. I have my next appointment with Arbaje on the 17th and we will go over my PET scans then, and further discuss my options.

For now, wish me luck with CTM’s upcoming production of A Christmas Carol — for those of you in the Madison area who are in the mood for some Christmas cheer, come see it! It runs from December 14 through December 23. Okay, enough shameless plugging.

I will keep you posted.


4 Responses to “unknown caller”

  1. I am not a fan of wait-and-see. However, the 17th doesn’t seem like too long to wait to see if Dr. A has some additional thoughts on the matter.

    Well, Happy Hanukkah. 🙂

  2. Ben Mettin Says:

    Hey Mike,

    no “Christmas Carol” in Austin this year
    how if we could freeze time and do that show till the end of days
    at the State Theatre
    we could bitch about Winkler with never ending chocolate & pillow twists
    getting chilly here & people are till nuts
    we miss you

    all the best – Ben

  3. University of Indiana if it is from Indianapolis or Indiana University if it is from Bloomington, most likely it is the latter.
    We really could have used your help on The Assumption remount.

    Hang in there.


  4. Jamie Marks Says:

    Mike, How’s the show going? Opening tomorrow? Are you doing the Dress Rehearsal today?

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