Apparently, when it comes to the interpretation of dreams, to dream of velvet is an indication of feeling comfortable, calm, cool, or collected.

Tomorrow is the last day of the first cycle of my drug trial. Really, it’s the second cycle. The first one was shorter and only involved taking the experimental drug as a baseline test. The second one was proper – combine chemo on Day 1 with ten days of the drug over a 21 day cycle. The original idea was to take it for longer but they found that the impact on white blood counts was too harsh. They reasoned that the body needed some days off to recover the platelet count. Maybe you could try sucking on roast bone marrow or something to help the process along, but alas diet and white blood cells don’t correlate much. At least, not to that degree. Red blood cells, that’s a different matter.

This data is based on results from two people. There are (I am told) four of us in total taking the drug. In the world.

For my part, it’s been altogether episode-free. Not one side effect. The drug bounced off me. The chemo bounced off me. This is a bad sick joke. For someone this sick, I am ridiculously healthy.

I’ve probably now put the bad curse on tomorrow and the blood test results.

If not, then on we go to Chemo#2 next Monday 9th.

I’m pleased that the risk/benefit decision to do this trial is paying off so far. At least, the part of it where I took the risk has returned no bad results. The benefit is still an unknown. It seems improbable that something this innocuous could result in anything tangible. But if I turn out to be a Super-Responder, that will be fine by me.

And so I dream of velvet.

I remain calm but detached. As Edmund Husserl said about “embodied experience”, it is all about chaos, absurdity, and the accident that is our subjective life in the form of a human-lived body.

I read about nature. I feel as much in common with the birds as I do with the world of people. I look at the night sky. Yesterday, Jupiter was visible just above the (nearly full) moon in the East, like a symbol from a flag of a country that does not exist. Each day grows warmer and the chilling effects of chemo will soon be no more.

I wear my father’s coat. I miss him and I think of all the gaps that appear in the world.

i wear your coat
it makes me believe
you’re still here with me
it keeps me warm
and all of my fragile kingdoms
from harm

–Clara Engel (2008)

But, at least I dream of velvet.