24 February 2016

Good Stuff

I started another round of chemotherapy treatments yesterday.  The good news yesterday was that I had gained 1.3 pounds in the thirteen days since my last treatment!  I know that doesn't sound like much, but for someone who was consistently losing 8 to 10 pounds between treatments back in the fall, anything that is stable or higher is really good news.

Today I had my IP chemo.  We call it the "rotisserie chicken chemo" because I have to rotate on the hospital bed after my peritoneal cavity is filled with the cisplatin.  The best news of all was that my CA 125, which is the tumor marker and cancer antigen indicator, was down another 200 points -- from 545 to 336!  I would have been perfectly happy with something in the 400's, nervous that it may have gone up, and DELIGHTED when I saw 336 on my lab report!  I am still shooting for something in the 30's, but I am thrilled at the downward trend we are seeing.

So many of you have reached out and told me that you are praying that the chemo will do what it's supposed to do.  We can truly thank the Lord that, at least for the time being, it seems to be.  Thank you so much for your faith and prayers in my behalf.

I know that some of you have also expressed that you are praying for my appetite.  I hope you can appreciate the photos below.  After my IV chemo yesterday, I went out for Mexican food and ate a decent amount.  Tonight, after my IP chemo, I thought I wanted Mexican again, so we headed for a restaurant called Jalapeno's.  On the way, I decided I wanted ravioli at Olive Garden.  Then just before we got there, I decided I wanted crab at Red Lobster.  I ate a full pound of Red Lobster snow crab and loved every bite!  I hope I don't throw up seafood when the special pre-meds start wearing off, because I know I would never eat crab again.  Since I am jacked up on pre-meds for anti-nausea and energy and hydration, I realize that I am artificially feeling well right now, and I'm not sure what to expect when it all wears off.

Thank you for all that you do for me!  I don't take any of it for granted.

12 February 2016

Six Down, Twelve to Go.....Two Down, Four to Go

I finished chemo number six of eighteen on Tuesday (or two down, four more series of treatments to go).  I haven't felt crummy, but I sure wish I had an appetite for food.

I'm meeting with a physical therapist twice a week now to see if we can loosen up the massive amounts of scar tissue I have under my skin as a result of my surgery.  Even when I'm not feeling crummy, I have a hard time with a lot of movement because I'm encumbered by the scar tissue.  I'm always trying to think of ways to describe how the scar tissue feels.  It's hard, because I've never felt anything like this before.  It's kind of like having a coat of armor, which is about four sizes too small, tightened around my ribs,   You can imagine how difficult it is to straighten your spine with something that tight tugging at you all the time.  I have an outstanding physical therapist and think that working with him is going to make a difference.

I'm looking forward to no chemotherapy next week and hope that the further we get from it, the more I'll feel like eating.  Someone asked me the other day if I feel as much support at this stage of the game as I did at the beginning.  The answer is definitely yes.  I just can't believe how good and helpful people are.

Thank you for all of your support and help.

07 February 2016

Caught Up

I think the two chemos in two days caught up with me this weekend!  I felt pretty crummy and weak.  My appetite is lousy, but I am hoping it will return a little in the next week.  I can't really complain too much though, because everyone takes such good care of me and helps me out so much.  I've also had two consecutive good night's sleep, which is always a plus.

One more treatment for this round will be this Tuesday, and then I will have thirteen days off to hopefully get my bearings.

Thank you everyone for being so nice to me!

03 February 2016

Two In Two

I've just complete two chemotherapies in two days.  One was IV, and the other was IP.  They were both made more bearable by the friends and family who, not only transported, but sat with me and visited with me during the total of 12 hours of treatment.

I received my CA 125 result today, which is the indicator that measures the cancer antigens in my body.  The good news is that this number is lower than it was three weeks ago when we started this new round of treatments.  I was delighted to find that out today!  The doctors will test again about three weeks from now.  Our prayer is that this number continues to decrease.  The CA 125 number in  a normal, non-cancer person is around 30.  Mine is currently 545, which is significantly down from some of my previous numbers--1900, 3500, 6500, and 7500--all of which were pre-surgery.  545 is not at all where we want to land, but it is the best number we've seen so far ever.

I ask that you will continue to pray that the chemotherapy will do what it's designed to do, and that we can get this disease kicked to the curb.  The medical professionals I've met with the past two days have been surprised at the minimal side effects I've experienced the last three weeks.  I tell them every time:  I have an army of friends and family that are praying for me.  I know we don't always get what we pray for; I understand that.  But I do feel that, at least for the time being, our prayers for my progress are being answered the way we have hoped they would be.  Thank you so much!

My next IP chemo is next Tuesday.

A friend brought me a small Costa Vida sweet pork salad to the hospital.  As you can see, I devoured every bite of it!