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Cyborg, redux

This is a good reminder, and just as applicable to writing or any other creative endeavor as it is to game design.

Need some visuals to go with 2kg? Photographer Alex Wild has just the thing, including photos of a fungus mentioned in the story. I told you I didn’t make this stuff up.

I don’t really want to talk about cancer today, but I know that many people who care about me are using this blog to check in so I will give you a brief update. I feel good this week: the cold sensitivity has worn off, my energy levels are good, I shoveled whole piles of fluffy snow (we got 9 inches at my house), and I’ve been sciencing hard. Chemo Monday, but for now life is fine.

And, for the curious, and because I think it’s both kind of neat and very sciency, I’ll include a photo of my mostly-healed cyborg apparatus. The cyborg parts are working well, though my superpowers have failed to materialize (unless you count punning and botanical pedandry, both of which have been more apparent than normal on twitter lately). For the squeamish, I’ll put in some blank space first.














It sticks out more than I expected, because it’s in a low-fat and low-muscle area, and that style of port is pretty big. I also didn’t expect the tubing to be so prominent. But it works beautifully, and that’s the important bit. Too bad the stylish purple carapace doesn’t show. Up close, there are three little bumps apparent that help the nurse figure out where to put the needle. It hurts less than getting an IV, and is a whole lot less inconvenient than having all those bits dangling from your arm.


  1. Toni says:

    I thought about your port as they were struggling to get 7 tubes of blood from me today. Would have made the whole thing easier!

    I didn’t realize the tubing goes up towards your brain rather than down towards your lungs. Then again the only thing I have to compare it to was my central line they were putting whatever-it-was-that-kept-me-unconscious, so that might be why it mattered for me.

    Good luck on Monday!!

  2. Sarah says:

    There are two ways the tubing can go: some surgeons like to put it into the subclavian vein running underneath the collar bone; my surgeon prefers to run it into the interior jugular instead, using ultrasound to ensure proper placement. The latter approach keeps the tubing straighter, so less chance of problems.

    I haven’t had a blood draw from the port; those have been arm so far. Connecting to the port is more complicated than a simple stick, so phlebotomists prefer the latter. But if they needed that much blood, maybe the port would be better.

  3. valerio says:

    loved the musical interlude you played for the picture intro. I think that your port need some stylish henna tatoo. Maybe something Mezo-american sun god is thing to fight seasonal stuff.


  4. Liz says:

    Oh I love the henna idea. However not sure hownitnwouodnreaxt with your skin and the drugs.

  5. neurondoc says:

    Healing very nicely.

  6. Sarah says:

    Neurondoc, every nurse who’s looked at it has admired the installation and asked which surgeon did the work. Apparently I have a remarkably well-done port, and yes, it seems to be healing nicely.

  7. Sarah says:

    Chris, that has possibilities, as long as I keep it off the port itself. Maybe when the weather warms up and the incision is entirely healed.

  8. So far the only surgical procedure that had me think, “wow, that’s a little too much” was a port placement. There wasn’t much blood, and the doctor didn’t need to practically push the patient off the table trying to get purchase (like they do in a hip replacement), no squishy parts being excised out… but watching them fish the port under the skin has a big squick factor for some reason.

  9. Sarah says:

    Steve, I can see that: things crawling around under the skin is such a horror movie trope, and for such good reason. Now thinking of the scarab beetles from the Mummy movie, which are just about the right size…

  10. Laura says:

    Good that it is healing well, but it doesn’t look comfortable. I imagine that once the invaders are annihilated, you will be glad to be…deported.