August 20, 2008

Jury duty

I was called to jury duty in King County Court for today. The notice arrived a few weeks ago, and since I had a CT test scheduled for Monday and a doctor's appointment to get the results today, I asked to reschedule the jury duty. No problem, we set it up for August 25.

Come back from vacation to find that the oncologist is out of town this week and has rescheduled my appointment to guess when? August 27. So I reschedule the CT test for August 25, then contact the jury duty people to try to reschedule jury duty a second time. They recommend moving back to August 20. But wait! I have my monthly zometa infusion on August 21, and jury duty in King County is for two consecutive days, regardless of whether a juror is called to serve on a trial. "Jury duty is a 2-day minimum. The average length that our citizens spend with us is about 2.25 days and the average trial is about 1.5 weeks."

Now I have to try to reach someone in the jury duty office to see if I should reschedule for a week when I have two consecutive days without medical appointments. Then I realize that I have so much medical stuff in my life that I can never guarantee I have a week or longer without some kind of medical appointment. So I can't serve as a juror.

I left three telephone messages on the emergency jury duty line (to be used in case of illness or death in the family), plus tried to reach the people I had been corresponding with via email. Today I received an email from Greg Wheeler asking me to request a letter from my physician supporting an exemption (which the doctor's office was happy to do). Greg was a mensch too, and closed his message with "Best wishes." And someone telephoned at 2 PM to say they had received my phone message.

The saddest part of this whole experience was my realization that I can't predict going a week or more without some kind of medical necessity coming up. That's what life with advanced cancer is like. As Gilda Radner used to say, "It's always something."

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