pegkerr: (Default)
We finally caught up with Rob's oncologist who interpreted the PET scan from two weeks ago for us. Rob has put on a waiting list for a new clinical study. He may get called to go in for tests sometime in the next 2-8 weeks. He would be a good candidate, but he may be ineligible because of his participation in an earlier study. Read more at our CaringBridge post.
pegkerr: (Deal with it and keep walking)
It's all summed up in the first line of the report: "Mixed changes with however worsening of lymphoma."

Read the rest at the CaringBridge post here.
pegkerr: (Default)
PET scan: liver glow GONE. Spleen glow GONE. Central glow deep in the abdomen (this is the one that really worried the doctor last time) GONE. Neck glow GONE. Slight glimmer on back of head remains, but no bigger than last time. New slight glimmer at tip of stomach: may be simply inflammation. Blood work looks perfect.

Our doctor said, "This is an enormous response. Marked improvement. Everyone's happy. Take the weekend to celebrate."

So...yeah. Thanks to Mayo! Thanks to our doctor. Rob's not ENTIRELY in remission, but he's pretty damn close. Which is absolutely amazing!

(I sent the girls Snapchats all day about "Our Day at Mayo" and took screen shots of most of them).

Our Day at Mayo )
pegkerr: (Deal with it and keep walking)
Rob and I just came back from Rochester. We have a mixed report. New spots on his liver and spleen. Are they tumors or inflammation? We don't know. The one deep in his body is probably a tumor, as it's right at the site of the tumor that started it all, which had apparently been eliminated by radiation in early 2015. One glowy bit from the last PET scan is gone. The doctor has decided the best thing is just to stay the course for now.

Read the rest on our CaringBridge post here.

I am so goddamned tired of all the uncertainty.
pegkerr: (Default)
Week 24: Hamilton
I have been listening to it NON-STOP!

Week 24 Hamilton

I bought the entire soundtrack for $2.00 (LEGALLY) when it was on sale for that price on Google Music. The show has its hooks in me (as it does in so many other people I know). Fiona's a fan, too, and we love to exchange tidbits of knowledge we've gained about the show, the production, the actors. She is going to GO SEE IT in June and I am so very jealous.

Week 25: Hope
I'm seeing a glimmer of light on my journey.

Week 25 Hope

This image depicts a woman on a journey (remember Week 3, Embark, the last card on this post?) who sees a lighthouse shining from shore and starts to feel a little bit of hope. This was the week I learned I had been given a grant by the Dislocated Workers Program from the State of Minnesota. I am going to be receiving training in a lot of the concepts and programs I need to have to change careers from legal administrative assistant to marketing.


Week 26: Dance
This was the week of Excellent Cancer News.

Week 26 Dance

I picked this picture from The Tutu Project, one of the amazing photographs taken by Bob Carey in support of his wife Linda Carey, who has been battling breast cancer. Yeah, okay, we're not battling breast cancer here, but it's about the spouse of someone with cancer. It's trying to bring humor and happiness to something that's often very grim. It just seemed to fit this time.

Week 27: Training
I begin to learn new things.

Week 27 Training

Hubspot Academy Inbound Marketing. Landing pages. Adobe InDesign. A/B testing. Etc. Let's hope it will result in a new career direction.

Week 28: Caucus
I took Fiona, and we both did our civic duty.

Week 28 Caucus

Fiona and I were both agonizing as we walked through the door until I hit upon a simple solution: "I'll vote for Hillary. You vote for Bernie. We'd be happy to vote for either one in the general election." And that's what we did.

Week 29: Flu
Everthing is a painful, feverish blur.

Week 29 Flu

The flu hit both Rob and me HARD. Think gray mindlessness, with fever and aches lurking below.  I started on Wednesday of that week. After a week and a half, I ended up at the hospital, getting intravenous fluids. The flu shot didn't do a damn thing for me.

Week 30:  
Not today
Nothing will get accomplished today.

Week 30 Not Today

Yes, this is still a one word title. Well, a word combined with a graphic.

This card was created because I became impatient after four days of the flu. Surely I should be getting better by now? I kept fretfully listing off things to Rob that I should be doing. He lay in bed beside me, sick as I was, and replied "Not today." And when I tried to stagger out of bed and take three steps, I would fall back into bed and repeat after him, "Not today." The whole week was like that.
pegkerr: (Default)
We are back from a two day stay at Mayo. The latest PET scan and biopsy gave us good news, and we've learned some more about how truly fortunate Rob has been. You may read more at the CaringBridge link here.
pegkerr: (Haven't you been listening to all that I)
I fell asleep in the chair in the room where Rob was getting his infusion. Woke up hard after an hour with a series of cross and sleepy kitten noises, and Siri, on my iPod Touch, responded by telling me, "I'm sorry. I don't know what you're telling me."
pegkerr: (Default)
I have been waiting to post these until we told the girls the latest medical results.

Week 15: Pain
Everything hurts.

Week 15 Pain

Since Rob's heart was damaged by chemo, I have been doing all the shoveling. At the first snowfall, doing the job, I hurt my back. Badly. Ice and painkillers and pillows and baths and ow and tears. It really, really hurt. At the same time, I have been fighting off depression (in the Victorian language of flowers, marigolds are associated by some with grief or despair). It has been very difficult to deal with physical pain, combined with the anxiety of job hunting, combined with the bad cancer news. This card is tied, symbolically, with the marigolds, to a card in my Soulcollage deck, The Woman Who Listens to Ravens.

Week 16: PET
Rob undergoes testing at Mayo Clinic.

Week 16 PET

I cut the words and the picture of a patient undergoing a PET scan from the various educational brochures we've received from Mayo (really, they will give you a brochure about anything under the sun). The blobby shapes draped over the words are photographs of some glassblown art hanging from the ceiling in the large atrium at Mayo Clinic (printed out on tracing paper, which is the first time I've used that technique). Here is a picture of the installation, in situ. Very pretty, if you look at it one way.

But every time I look at those shapes, I think they look like cellular structures. Even like tumors.

I suspect that impression is intentional.
pegkerr: (Deal with it and keep walking)
Rob's last PET scan was suspicious, and the most recent one, taken this month, was worse. Our doctors did a biopsy, and we received the results today. Rob's cancer has indeed come out of remission, although at least it hasn't reached his bones yet. He is starting an immunatherapy trial at Mayo Clinic next week. Read the details here at our CaringBridge site.

We had waited until tonight to share the news with the girls that the last PET scan was bad because we wanted them to get through their finals first. Finals are over, however, and they have both been told.
pegkerr: (Deal with it and keep walking)
We've had two trips to Mayo in the past two weeks and have received both good news and inconclusive news. Good news: surgical site (Athena's old quarters) is healing, and PET scans show old cancer sites are dark. Inconclusive news: there are some new glowing areas on the PET scan in his neck area...but we aren't sure whether it's cancer or not. Read further on our CaringBridge report (see link).

Read the post at our CaringBridge here.
pegkerr: (Glory and Trumpets)
Had a follow up visit at Mayo today. Today's PET scan was perfectly clean, and the surgical wound is so well healed that we don't need to dress it or cover it any more. The total remission continues to hold strong. Yay! Only disappointment is that the genetic report on the tumor still isn't ready (way overdue). Next follow up is in November.

Read the rest at our CaringBridge here.
pegkerr: (Default)
We have been back twice to Mayo to follow up with Rob's surgeon. His wound is healing well, but more importantly, the biopsy results indicate his lymphoma has been completely routed from his body. For the first time in two years, apparently, Rob is completely cancer-free. YAY!

Read more details at our CaringBridge post here.
pegkerr: (Deal with it and keep walking)
Back from Mayo for a followup visit today which turned into an unexpected spot of further surgery for Rob. They REALLY want to make sure that scalp tumor doesn't come back.

But the doctor did say the wound seems to be healing well. It's just a little deeper now (and again, they'll biopsy what was removed today).

I'm relieved. Rob had been experiencing a ramping up of pain the past couple of days, as well as the sort of sensations he'd had before when the tumor was growing previously.

The doctor also went out and picked out the bits of gauze threads I hadn't been able to remove because Rob was too squeamish to allow me to dig them all out. (Since the doctor's not married to Rob, he's more willing to be ruthless). It was a relief to hold Rob's hand and let someone else do the hurting for a change. I HATE hurting him.

Keep sending those hate waves at Athena, people. She's about as stubborn as Rob.

Wound care

Apr. 24th, 2015 10:17 pm
pegkerr: (Default)
it too half an hour for me to take Rob's bandage off, for him to shower, and for me to redress the wound.

I certainly hope I get faster at this.
pegkerr: (Deal with it and keep walking)
The tumor on his head has shrunk to skin level. Rob's heart is slowly improving. Next step will be testing/PET scan in Rochester on March 17.

See more at the CaringBridge post here.
pegkerr: (A light in dark places ice candle)
We have known this information for awhile but we delayed in making it generally known so that we could notify family first. The clinical trial that Rob underwent did not work, and so he still is not cleared for stem cell transplant. We met with our oncologist to discuss our dwindling options.

Read more on Rob's CaringBridge account here.
pegkerr: (Default)
I discovered this song when my family sent me on a spa weekend getaway for my fiftieth birthday.

I have been playing it a lot lately, when the wish for a Time Turner starts itching at me again, as it has a lot lately.

But hey, I'm not wishing for a Resurrection Stone.



Tell me about ways you are living in the moment.
pegkerr: (Default)
and the clinical trial is a GO. Details (and requests for help) are posted on our CaringBridge site here.
pegkerr: (Default)
Thanks to those of you who have contacted me to offer caregiving help. However, the schedule has changed again, and so the date of the stem cell transfer is being pushed further out (and we're rather relieved). See CaringBridge here for the details.

Profile

pegkerr: (Default)
pegkerr

May 2017

S M T W T F S
 12 3456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28293031   

Peg Kerr, Author

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags