(12) July Highlights

IMG_0916 0201Thank you all for your unending positive thoughts and prayers.  A few weeks ago, my cousins took part in a Relay for Life.  They made luminaries with my photo (of the superman kind) and set them up along a 5K walk at night. Thank you Larry, Lynn, Cheryl, Craig, Christine and Rosemary. Earlier in July, Eileen’s sisters Kathy, Pat and Ann, our brothers-in-law Tony, Albert, Neil, and Tim, plus our nieces Lauren and Heather with Simone, and our nephew Rusty with Ana, Eileen and Aidan, all came out to our place to create a “no stress” party.  They brought everything… we only needed to bring the nice weather.  Thank you.



(13) No longer the Poster Boy

Poster ChildOn Tuesday the 11th I had a blood sample taken. Yesterday (Wed.), prior to chemo #3, I answered all of Dr. Shipp’s questions before she reviewed my blood results with me.  She said, “You’re STILL the poster child of dose dense M-VAC chemo.” WooHoo! It was a subtle change, but I noticed it: she promoted me from Poster Boy to Poster Child!

All of my important numbers are where they need to be. Dr. Shipp explained that if they were not, they would have to supplement with blood transfusions.   I’m on track for the 4th and final dose on the 26th.

I still have about 50% of my hair – enough so that I look my age. Based on what happened last time, I should lose a bunch more this coming week. Eileen and I are taking weekly photos of the “stages” to share once the process is complete.

Photo: If Dr. Shipp is serious, I thought I’d find a good childhood photo of me so that she can get busy on that poster. I always felt bad having training wheels, but seeing the photo, the bike looks way too big for me.

(14) Did it!

FullSizeRenderAll my blood work checked out OK so I was able to take the fourth (and final) round of the dd-MVAC yesterday (08/26).  Phew!  I would have hated to have it postponed.  Now I will have a routine blood test in three weeks, a consultation and CT Scan in Iowa City in four weeks, and Bladder removal October 1st.

The staff at the Oncology lab had an impromptu celebration for me as I finished my fourth cycle.They played music, gave me hugs,a certificate, and bottle of bubbly.  Thank you Krista, Cindy, Val, Cheryl, and Brittany.  I left feeling always welcome there, always comforted by you, and that you always cared about me.  Thank you. (We are wearing the buttons that you gave to us – they started several conversations when we went shopping afterwards… so what did you two just do?)

I have to admit I am not  a “complete” Superman.  All last week, my nausea had been dramatically flaring up whenever I thought of going back for the fourth round.  Aware guy that I am, I knew it was all psychological, yet no amount of spiritual, cosmic, musical, universal, or wood chopping thoughts could snap me out of it. I told Dr. Shipp, and low and behold, there’s a drug for that.  And within two hours my stomach calmed, my mind became mental mush, and I’ll have to ask Eileen to write down all of the things we (I) agreed to do.