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July 12, 2003


Today has been pretty uneventful, except for the predicted RBC transfusion. Most of my issues today have been emotional ones, and I don't think I want to talk about them right now with the world. You know, it is a Guy Thing. Since today is Saturday, I thought I would try something different for a change of pace. I thought I would try to paint a picture for you of a place. It is a place I can go to when I am in pain, or stressed. I guess they call it a sanctuary or refuge. It is also a real place that some of you have probably been to.

Picture with me a trail climbing gently up the side of a heavily forested, steep mountain valley. I am walking up the trail. The valley wall climbs up to a ridge on my left, and falls about 200 feet to a stream on my right. Beyond the steam, the opposite valley wall climbs a couple of thousand feet to rugged peaks that I can see occasionally through the trees. Underfoot, the trail is rocky. It kind of crunches as I walk. Between the rocks, the soil is damp. The trees are giant Jefferson and White pines, so the valley floor is covered with a thick layer of pine needles. The thin air is redolent with their scent. The tree trunks stand like giant columns rising up to support the deep blue vault of the sky. The forest floor is fairly open except where giant, moss covered deadfalls are surrounded by saplings sucking up the light created by the gap in the canopy, and the nutrients from the old tree, along with multicolored mushrooms and beautiful red/yellow spiked flowers. The stream below leaps and falls over rocks in it's bed, creating a softly varying accompaniment, along with the sighing of the mountain breezes in the treetops, to the chirps and warbles of tiny birds flitting unseen through the crowns of the trees. Little of the wind gets to the floor of the forest, but the soft, cool breezes that do gently caress the skin of my face and hands. This is a place of peace and harmony, a place that goes to other places of beauty, and towering heights. It is a sanctuary in my mind. It is a place I intend to return to in real life, on the way to those heights.

Lab Results

Blood Cell Type

Normal Low




WBC 4.5 .5 .4 .6
RBC 4.30 2.65 2.47 2.26
HGB 13.9 8.9 8.2 7.6
PLT 130 31 42 30

I hope you like my painting.

Ted Wilcox

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