I am now officially back on chemo, i.e. they added back in one of the meaner drugs. The last round they took it pretty easy on me as my liver numbers were kind of a mess. We decided to give the liver a break, going back on the chemo I was back on in 2008. This is the chemo that causes neuropathy-some of the effects I still feel from 1.5 years ago. We have a plan to deal with that potential problem by doing an infusion of calcium along with possibly starting and stopping the treatments. I think it was a good plan and suggestion by Dr. Leach. Time will tell if it is effective against the cancer cells.
Today’s treatment had its ups and downs. First the down(other than the obvious that I am back on chemo), my treatment was almost delayed 2.5 hours as they nurses, doctors, lab and whole process was just out of sync. I am a pretty patient, patient so I didn’t let it get to me.
There were a few ups… I had a great visit with Kristin Tabor, the head of the colon cancer foundation in MN and the person in charge of all the Get Your Rear in Gear races throughout the nation. We had a great conversation covering a variety of topics. Kristin is a loving, passionate person that at her core just really, really cares for people who are affected by this disease. She knows all to personally about the tragedy that goes hand in hand with cancer-but that is her story to tell. I won’t go into all the differing subjects but it suffices to say that she is a true warrior and blatantly honest. She encouraged me to keep up the good fight. She offered to introduce me to anyone and everyone who I felt may help me in my battle with this disease. She, as you may remember, is the one who helped pave the way for my upcoming Mayo appointment. I can just flat out say that she cares for me personally and my well-being even though we have spent very little time with each other. That just tells you the compassion within her heart.
A second thing…So far I am not feeling so bad. Dr Duane though reminded me that by Friday night I am going to feel pretty run over. But for now, not too bad and I even made it to help coach Brenden’s soccer team again-chemo bottle attached and all.
A third thing…I am just thankful for the regiment I am on. I really don’t know where I would be now if not for Pat Groeper jumping in and introducing me to Dr. Leach. He provided a fresh perspective and basically wrote up the orders that I am on now. Prior to her jumping in and pulling him into my world, the plan was just to go back on the last chemo I was on. That chemo is very dependent on my Bilirubin number being a good number, and my number had been pretty bad. I really don’t know if Dr. Duane would have decided to try this. Again none of this guarantees success, but it feels good vs. just waiting around a number to hopefully get back in line.
A fourth thing…My Bilirubin number itself and i.e. Liver showed that they too can recover from that nasty radiation treatment. My Bilirubin had been holding at 2.4 for a couple weeks. That is not a good number when it comes to chemo’s, potential clinical trials etc… It basically states that your liver is toxic and is no longer working well. The oncologists were skeptical and worried. I was confident that it would rebound and told them so. A week ago one of my prayer partners asked what a good rebound number would be. I told him 1.8. I figured a .6 drop was pretty large. He asked what normal was again, and I told him 1.2. So he specifically prayed for that number to drop and was praying for 1.2. He didn’t get his prayer and I had my number soundly beaten. My number dropped to 1.5! That is an amazing step for a liver that just two weeks ago they were very worried about. At least Dave, I and Kristin seemed excited about it. I know from the outside looking in it that it may not seem that exciting. But I think it shows the doctors that my liver still has plenty of fight left in it. The rest of my blood work was low, but not too low to take in all the drugs.
So I am finally heading for bed. It was a good day. As the days go on I know I will feel worse, for now I just feel blessed and thankful.
Thank you for your gifts, comments, thoughts and prayers. They are uplifting and touch the heart. Thank you for all who have come along side me during this journey to help me take down this “Goliath” in my life.