My goodness, I hadn't realized it was so long since I'd written a post. Time is certainly flying by!

Nothing too important has been happening, which is why it didn't occur to me that I should 'report in'. But I've been very busy, nonetheless:

~ I've been going to Physical Therapy. It hasn't helped with the pain on an ongoing basis, but on the day of the therapy I get some pain relief, and hopefully it is strengthening the supporting muscles a bit. That's important, since even a relatively minor fall or bump to the hip could have very serious consequences. We're hoping to get me strong enough that I could perhaps use the regular machines at the local Y.

~ I've been getting Qi Gong healing sessions with a truly lovely woman - I'll talk about her more in a later post, as she is starting up a wonderful program for cancer patients and their caregivers over at Woodwinds. She is hoping to start it up in October, and it will be free of charge.

~ Realizing that my time of mobility is very limited, and that already I can only walk a very short distance, we shopped around and found a used scooter for a very reasonable price. Of course, now I need a way to cart the scooter (and future wheelchair) around...

~ So we are shopping for a reliable used minivan. We have narrowed the field to the Mazda MPV, the Toyota Sienna, and the Dodge Caravan (not the Grand, but the smaller one). The Honda Odyssey and the Plymouth Voyager would be on the list, but they are out of our price range. It's not proving easy to find one in our budget that is well kept and not too heavy on the miles, so let me know if you are aware of someone in the Twin Cities/Hudson area who is about to put one on the market.

~ The wonderful son started his college year this week, and there's been a lot of stuff necessary to get to that point, so that kept us busy in-between the shopping and therapeutic adventures.

All of which has kept me somewhat distracted from fretting about the upcoming scan. That happens very early tomorrow (Monday) morning. I expect I'll hear from my doctor on Wednesday or so if the news is bad, which I rather expect it will be. He doesn't like to give that sort of news in person. That will leave plenty of time during our appointment on Friday for him to push at me about chemo. Wheeeeee...

So that's all the news that's fit to print. I do have a few things of more general interest to say, but I'll save that for another post.

If you are inclined towards prayer, please put in a word for my dear friend Timary, whose husband was recently diagnosed with what has turned out to be very aggressive renal cell carcinoma. He is not doing well, and is going straight to hospice care from the hospital where he had surgery. Timary has been a great blessing in my life the last few years; she is a talented designer and a very beautiful spirit. She and her family need and deserve all the love and support they can get.



Well, the new doctor was pretty much no help at all. So I'm still adrift at sea, with no clear direction.

I'm on my own.

Thank goodness I'm only alone in terms of trying to figure out what to do next. I am most definitely NOT alone when it comes to a truly fantastic support system.

So I want to take this moment to thank my sweetheart of a mom, my staunch supporter of a dad, my sweetest-of-all-husbands, my beautiful and talented son, my darling sister and fabulous in-laws, my kind and loving friends and my many new acquaintances. You are all more than I could have ever imagined, I am unspeakably grateful to have you in my life.

If there were a thousand of me, I'd give you all a standing ovation.


On th'Aromasin...

Well, Dr. Bouncy says another 3-4 weeks until the next PET/CT scan, and clearly the Faslodex is not a good option, so I'm back on the Aromasin for the time being. I told him that I was considering the possibility of taking the Zometa for a couple months, long enough to support a bit of bone growth/scarring after the radiation, if that seems to have shrunk the tumors sufficiently.

I don't think he thinks the Aromasin is going to do any good (he may be right, for all I know), but it's fairly clear he thinks that when I see progression on the scan I'll be scared into chemo, so he thinks I might as well just coast for the month.

I'm expecting some progression, since I will also have been off of the supplements that I think have been helpful for two months (they act against the radiation) and because the allergic reaction to the Faslodex will have 1) caused cancer-feeding inflammation systemically and 2) worked against the LDN. My liver started griping me about 2-3 weeks after stopping the ALA, and the chest lump seems to be fluctuating again, among other things.

So unless the progression is extreme, I don't think it will panic me into anything I'm not already prepared to do. I'm inclined to wait on certain decisions until after I see this new doctor, see whether he can suggest a few new options... the real chemo decision may wait until the scan after this next one.

We'll see. I'm going to have to take this a little bit at a time.

We'll see how things go.


Glowing, But Slowly Fading

Last Friday was my last radiation treatment.

Today I had (drum roll, wait for it) a salad!!! Oh, the joy, the pure sumptuous pleasure of a vegetable, a bit of fruit...

I may suffer for it, of course, but I don't care. It was delicious, and it was nice to enjoy something for a little bit.

I also had a day and a half of increased energy and less pain, thanks to a very kind lady who came over and did a Qi Gong healing session with me. She certainly was a lovely spirit - thank you, Bonnie!

What this helped me realize is that it's not necessarily the tumor that is really debilitating me at the moment. I'm still suffering from some pain there, but I'm suffering more from referred pain, from sciatic pain (caused, no doubt, by my change in gait and my getting less exercise and spending more time sitting on those nerves), and from pain caused by the Faslodex. I see the Physical Therapist on Friday, maybe she will have some ideas on what I can do to at least deal with the sciatic pain.

I am not having a good time with the Faslodex. I know I'm not going to be happy with any of my options, however. I'm not certain what I will do. I will be seeing Dr. Bouncy tomorrow, we'll see what he says (as though I don't already know). I will also be seeing a new doctor next week - one more inclined towards non-mainstream treatments. I'll know more after seeing the next PET/CT scan in the next couple weeks, and hopefully all of that will help me make a decision.

And that's where we are. The radiation theoretically will keep working away inside for another two weeks or so, and so we just have to wait until then to see whether it did much good or not. Wish me luck...