Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Icing On The Chemo

I am not sure how she does it. I feel like I take copious notes and I know I do not get all the information she gives me. How does my mom keep track of the schedule, the drugs, the tests. How does she pay attention to what the nurses are telling her while she sits in a recliner dressed up like a science experiment?

I have been bad about documenting mom's progress. It is true, "out of sight, out of mind". I suppose after our visit to DC in April I felt relieved. Mom had energy and responded well to the treatment. The inflammation was decreasing and the tumor was not growing. I felt safe. Don't get me wrong, I knew "we", meaning mom, was not out of the woods. I didn't want my thoughts, or our phone conversations to be surrounded by this intruder. That is how I looked at this cancer. The intruder that took my mother's immortality. Isn't that what we think of our parents? That they will live forever and be just a call away forever? Or is that what is known as "taking it for granted".

They finally figured out the intruder had a name. Not just cancer. We now now the intruder's full name. You know how the media tacks on a middle name or initial to the criminal. Lee Harvey Oswald, John Wayne Gacy, etc. Mom's intruder, AKA Adenocarcinoma of the lung. This type of cancer is very common and is typical in non smokers and you guessed it; those that have quit. Makes you think twice about quitting huh?

The new information has allowed mom's doctors to have a more defined approach to her treatment. The new regime includes three weeks of treatment; one on each Friday. Then a Friday off. The desire is to shrink the tumor to a very small size. Hopefully small enough that other methods can be introduced to the fight. Radiation and Cyber Knife are two that are in the discussion fold at this time.

Although it is a base line, her blood work is looking good. The real story will be told with a CT scan being done in four weeks.
One of the cancer factors that was 1996, dropped to 589, then to 529, went up to 645 and now is 208!! That is great news. The LDH that was at 25 is now at 16.9. So she currently has good factors. The white cell count had dropped below 1000 but corrected itself and is now up to 1108. They will not give her shots until after it stays below 1000 for 2 weeks. This concerns me a little because mom is prone to infection anyway. She always has a sinus infection and for the last year or so was always on an antibiotic. The red blood cells are good but a little thin-they are running a new lab test this week to determine if they want to start mom on liquid iron. This is not that surprising since mom has had issues with thin blood as long as I can remember. What can be an issue here is hemorrhaging. Mom hemorrhaged pretty badly giving birth to my sister at only 5-ish pounds and was experiencing some nose bleeds when they changed her treatment a few weeks back. She had a staph infection in her nose and they ended up having to cauterize some blood vessels up there. As if she didn't have enough going on.

The doctor is very pleased with the results to date and is in shock mom is still working 10-12 hour days while going through chemo. He mentioned in his whole case load he has two patients that are still working.

Oh wait! Make that one...Mom got FIRED today.
*That is all I am allowed to say at this point. I will update you all when I can.

15 comments:

The Rev. said...

Numbers are looking good - My thoughts are with you & your mother, you can rest assured.

Fired? Very sorry to hear that- I shall stay tuned for more...

Trish said...

Thank you so much for sharing this journey with your Mom - you are in my prayers.
It was awful to read that she had been fired.....but sadly, I wasn't surprised. I know some folks that had the same experience - the "person" (think they forgot that) becomes a liability because they actually USE the insurance they paid for.
I pray that everything comes out very well for your Mom - will be following the story on your blog.

JenniBeanV said...

I hope your mom continues to do well! My mom is a 2 time breast cancer survivor...I know how hard it is to watch them go through it!

A Good Husband said...

If your mom got fired for having cancer, then she's got a fat check coming...I can see it now.

Thanks for reaching out to me on Twitter & Cre8buzz!

Ok, Where Was I? said...

She got fired?! I hope things go well for her (and you) and she continues to feel well.

tysdaddy said...

Fired, eh?

Sounds like someone has some 'splaining to do . . .

Do keep up posted . . .

Mike said...

I sorry to read about your mother's cancer. I think having a parent ill is as hard as having your child ill. You just approach it differently. I agree with "a good husband" if cancer is the reason she was fired she has a great case with the company.

BTW thanks for the shout out at
Cre8buzz

Miss Got Wings said...

oh my! I'm just catching up on your blog now. Your poor mother. Fired? especially at a time liek this? I'm praying for her. Please keep us updated.

Amy said...

I am glad to hear your mom is doing better! I am sorry about her job, but I hope it all works out okay!

Birdie said...

Fired??? Wow now that was quite the coincident huh? I'm so sorry you guys are having to go through this. I hate thinking about anything happening to my parents. I'll be praying for you guys for SURE.

Karen said...

My prayers are with your family. She got fired??? I am not going to say what I think about that until I know why.

Putz said...

what a galient fight and winning your mom is making against cancer, when i first came on this site months and months ago, the first thing i saw was your mom in some hospital getting the "WORKS' in tsts

Veggie Mom said...

Your Mom sounds like such a strong person. Good luck to her on her journey. You know, sharing her story can be restorative to you, too, who can also be counted as one of the "survivors."

Kim said...

I'm so sorry your mom was fired, but I'm glad she's doing better.

I love that cake.

The Mom said...

I'm so glad to hear that your mom is doing better.

I lost my mom to cancer 4 years ago.

I'm rooting for your mom's full recovery!

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