First Follow up to Chemo
Giovedi 19 Ottobre
Today’s blood exam was an important one. This would give us an indication on how I faired with the first dose of Chemotherapy, how my body handled it internally, how much toxins are still left in the system, and more.
First let me recap how I felt prior to walking into the hospital this morning (refresher from yesterday’s blog if you will). I slept great again, for another consecutive night; no issues sleeping in any position I desired. ALL and I mean all the tumors are visibly and noticeably shrinking. Ground Zero, aka Russell Crowe is now down to almost nothing. I literally feel like I did the day I began the walk back in April. It’s like a miracle right? Haha
I enter the hospital, the sweet elderly volunteer recognizes me and high-fives me and hands me my number haha (I want to write out the routine of the ritual because it’s become so fun and smiles are great; this paragraph is not medical update so you can skip down if you’d like). My number comes up quick because my exams/results have been moved to priority status about 17 days ago by Dr. Marte; it doesn’t mean I cut lines or anything snooty like that it just means there is time sensitivity on her schedule and my things are fast so they move that through quickly. The screen shows the desk I have to check in at, number 3; which is in a room of 6 desks altogether..i have not been in this room in a few weeks. As I pass through the sliding door I hear “ahh Cristopher!” in a broken Italian-english accent haha. I remember Francesca from a couple of weeks back when she checked me in one-time, she commented on my name and how a new nephew in her family was named Cristoforo (Italian for Christopher). She checked me in, which means: scan my card and register the exam in the computer, which then gives me a slip of paper I take to the exam and from there everything gets tracked. We say ciao! High-five and I am off to disappear around the corner for the blood draw about 50m down the hall to the right. As I make my way I am already slipping my arm out of my jacket to save time, because sure enough when I walk up there are 3 people waiting and the nurse sees me and waves me over. Because I am already prepared, hop in the chair, she wraps the tube and I have “excellent vein exposure” haha she has my blood in 4 tubes in under 5 mins. It’s like a NASCAR pit stop. She made a comment about how good the neck was looking from last’s weeks visit, that was nice to hear. I hopped up and made my way out of the hospital to the other building where I would wait for the results outside Dr. Marte’s office. It would take some time so that’s when I get some work done online.
Ok now the update part: She asked how I was feeling and I told her “not a single negative side effect, not 1.” She found it hard to believe not one; no nausea, no diarrhea, no sweat, nothing?! Yes, nothing. Ok great. She began to feel the tumors and her face was classic, “They are gone?! Well little russell but wow.” Yup. Ok so then she began to look at the blood report with me and there are two particular areas they have to check, which will show how much toxin I am still holding and how my kidneys are handling it. I soooo wanted to video her but no way, I had to force her for the photo for my initial video a week ago; but her reaction to the blood results is something I will remember the rest of my life. Zero sign. She then began to say “Chris, wow, I hoped and knew you would do good but I did not expect to see results like this! Your body handled it extremely well.” So I asked the logical question: where is it all going then, what happened to it, I mean it had to go somewhere right? She replied, “The chemo was the max aggressive and it attacked it, it killed the cancer cells as it is supposed and your body flushed it faster than I could have imagined. This is all very very positive and means we can progress with more on the next chemo if you are up for it” I said for sure I am I feel fantastic and she reminded me that the next round (which will be Nov 6) is a big one and one that, as she said “not even superman can stand…you will feel this one and it will put you down” I acknowledged that and that I recalled them telling me this before from the prior discussions with her and IEO; I understand and it’s just part of the walk. She wants to be sure that these incredible results are real and stay so she ordered additional blood draws every week leading up to the next chemo, just to make sure all things keep as they are. I totally agreed and it is not a hassle for me to come down and give blood; I won’t have to wait for the results on these, she will only call if there is a problem. That is a wrap on the Blood exam results.
Last order of business and one I did not expect. She told me that based on what she has seen and how well I have things under control IF I would like to take myself off medications (steroids and pain meds) she is totally ok with it and said I could self-administer if need be. This really meant a lot to me and she knew it; I want to stay as clean as I can.
I feel really good and I would like to say thank you for the support/prayers/energy that you’ve shown me…it truly means a lot and I hope the news today resonates with you big time! Life is good and this symphony is a masterpiece in the making!