Friday, July 31, 2009

Cancer Care

Yesterday was a big day for Angela and me. We had a meeting at Cancer Care with Dr. Maksymiak (chemo). The purpose was a check up after my second round of chemo and to discuss the results of me CT scan from the previous week.
I was pretty anxious in the few days leading up to that meeting. Seeing that I felt so good over the last week I was concerned that I maybe didn't get enough chemo (a theme that seems not to go away in my mind), that led to a fear that the team of physicians might not know what they're doing, etc. I was also a bit worried that they might have found something new on the scan and that the cancer spread over the last couple of months.
The meeting turned out to be great. First of all, there were no new discoveries; in fact the cancer was hidden by the many metal fillings in my teeth, so they couldn't really tell what size it was at the moment. By looking at it and by using my lack of pain as an indication, it seemed to be shrinking. My white blood cell level was way down and it became clear that any more chemo would have jeopardized the treatment that is to come. So, they were right to use the dosages they used. When you have to trust somebody potentially with your life it feels extremely good to get the sense that they are in control of the situation. With regards to the treatment that will begin on Tuesday I was informed that I would get a day of chemo every two weeks. That drug, unlike the ones I have gotten so far, would be highly toxic and I was promised that I wouldn't be 'short changed' with regards to unpleasant side effects. Apparently it is know to be hard on one's system. Well, I asked for it...
At the end Dr. Maksymiak elaborated a bit on the fact that things were looking up for the moment. The induction chemo seemed to have done its job and he is hopeful that the actual treatment of radiation and chemo will show good results.
After leaving the meeting a cried for a while while walking through the hallway. Tears of relief, though. No new bad news and a lot of hope.

Now I brace myself for Tuesday.


Wendy Broadfoot said...

Dear Olaf,
I cannot even begin to imagine how you are dealing with the many feelings you are experiencing----my heart aches for you. I wish you my very best on Tuesday and the days ahead of you. Try to take one day at a time (easy for me to say!)
Thanks again for sharing your innermost thoughts. I feel honoured to know you, but wish I had met you sooner.

GoMamma said...

Hey Olaf,

You are always at the top of my mind. Especially my prayer list. I think I check this blog daily. No I'm not stalking you lol. I'm so pleased to hear there are such positive hopeful things to look at. Not a lot of people know but I have BPD, it'll never go away. I do however understand the constant worry and fear that something "might" go wrong. I also know that sometimes taking one day at a time seems like a giant feat when the worry becomes overwhelming. So just letting you know, it's okay to just sit, breathe and allow yourself to take one second at a time. And distract yourself as much as possible with "normal" life. Like good friends and family like you've been doing. MEGA virtual hugs to you and Angie :D

Laura said...

Well, you know you have all your friends ready to leave you alone in peace or jump to the pump to keep you company as you begin your next phase.

It does sound like you're in the right hands.

Really hope the treatment isn't too unpleasant.

stephen m. said...

I've typed and erased a bunch of comments because they all just words, blah blah blah - that I'm sure you know. I realised how frustrated I feel not be able to do something that will fix this. Sorry about that. I can't imagine what you feel, living it. What I can do is trust and pray that all that scientific stuff will do what it usually does, kills a bunch of cancer cells, and you'll come out feeling better, but not too good, just not dying from mouth cancer. We're here for you. So hang in there dude. Blessings of peace and healing. Love ya.

Anonymous said...

Very good to hear this Olaf. As always, you are in my thoughts every single day....Much love.