Waiting for Radiation or the next step in treatment

I am done with the 10 Chemo treatments and now we must decide on next plan of attack.  I received some not too good news in that the Pancreas Marker we use (called the CA19-9) was slightly elevated this week after all the Chemo.  My Oncologist is somewhat concerned, as am I.  We would like that number to keep going down or stay in the same place, not elevate.  It did not raise much, but it is a cause of concern.  Especially since I am really doing some Heavy Hitting Alternative stuff now.  I want these Alternative things to kick this cancer’s butt!

The profit margin for traditional cancer treatment is so enormous.  My 10 Chemo treatments cost over $300,000 already, most of that is covered by insurance.  But insurance will not pay $120 times 3 for my three weekly IV Alternative Method treatments, or any of the so numerous pills we are taking.  I just started a new power drug that costs me  — $1700 per month.  I can get it from Canada for less which I am doing, but all these pills & treatments not covered are scary indeed.  They are a lot cheaper than the Chemo, but the insurance industry only pays for the traditional big three — Chemo, Radiation and surgery.  But I will keep doing these Alternative things because i really feel they are helping.

We will probably do  a powerful radiation for 5 straight straight days soon …. I am meeting that doctor soon.  So many decisions and things to consider.

I send all of you positive thoughts and vibes.  As I have said before, value each of your days you live.  Life is precious and we need to live as positively as we can and “not sweat the small stuff”!  Cheers to all.

I am thankful for each day!

THANKSGIVING EVE.   When one hears the news that he/she has cancer, it changes that person’s entire life in many ways.  For me, I became thankful for every day I am on this Earth.  Each day becomes more precious.  I have so much to be thankful for in so many years of a truly big life I have lived and traveled our globe.  Now all I want is to experience many, many more years!  That is my daily goal.

I hope that all of you will renew your energy & thoughts and be thankful for so much of your life.  So many of us daily complain about such small problems in our lives rather than seeing that each day/week/year are valuable and should be lived to the fullest always.

I have now finished my 10 scheduled Chemo treatments and now I must decide with my doctors what the next steps will be.  I met with my Oncologist on Monday and we discussed the next probable treatments.  The tumor has shrunk to now 3.6 cm, almost half of what it was in my first measurements.  But it is still covering part of the major arteries, so we could not do surgery at this time anyway.  I am soon to meet with the radiation doctor to discuss a series of 5 days straight of daily radiation to shrink the tumor even more.  We also will probably have some type of “maintenance” Chemo occasionally. I plan to continue to do my many Alternative Treatments including adding some really powerful “Big Guns” alternative medicines.  They are very expensive (not covered by any insurance), but I think they also will work really well to help eradicate the tumor.  I am doing all that I know to fight this horrible disease.

I ask for two things from everyone reading this blog.  First, I ask for your thoughts & prayers as I fight this. … they help immensely.   And second, please each of you work hard on appreciating each day you live and see the positive in your days & nights.  Don’t sweat the small stuff!  Believe me, if you ever hear bad medical news, it will change your reaction to the little irritating things that seem to bother you now.  You will learn to value your times and savor your family, your job, your friendships, your loved ones, your outlooks, your daily emotions.  I hope that no one of you ever hears any bad medical news, but you can make small positive changes in your outlook today to live more positively.

That is my desire for each of you…. enjoy!

Mostly Good News I hope!

Had an appointment with a surgeon early this morning about my latest CAT Scan results.  I would say that it was mostly good results.  Still some concerns tho.

The pancreatic tumor has shrunk some more — that is good news!  When I was first diagnosed in June it was 6.4 cm wide.  In the last 5 months with 10 Chemos and countless Alternative Methods, it has gone down to 4.8, then 4.0 and now is 3.6 cm.  Good news.  But the surgeon has said that it is still too close to arteries & veins to operate IF I DECIDE to do that.  So, no immediate decision on that, altho I am leaning towards no Whipple Surgery.

So, now I meet my Oncologist  on Monday to discuss what is next.  The surgeon said that mainly I should opt to continue my Alternative procedures (as it seems to also be working well) and go into a series of pinpointed radiation right into the tumor target.  Also, I may start a new (and less powerful) Chemo as maintenance.  I will know more when I talk to my regular doctor Monday.

So, I guess I am relieved somewhat, but still have some real concerns.  I am biting at the bit to make a travel trip and may do that soon just for my own pace of mind.  That would lift my spirits, as those that know me know that is “what I do!!”.  I am planning on a trip soon.  Later, I plan on directing my Bachmann Tour Overdrive to Antarctica (with South Georgia & The Falklands) in February, and my BTO Cuba trip in April.  I plan on being strong enough to do all of those.

I will rest this weekend and seek some resolve on the next direction. Your thoughts and prayers count so much, so keep them coming.  This blog has reached more & more people that need some encouragement in their own lives and I get nice letters from people that I do not know that someone directed them to my blog and it is helping them think positively in their own medical struggles.  That makes me feel good indeed that I am helping many other people to see light where there could be darkness.  I send hugs to all of the people that read this.  Cheers to you….

Waiting for the scans to know next step!

 

astream

A gentle stream in Glacier National Park in Montana.  Peace and flowing.  I like to surround myself with pictures I took that portray gentle thoughts.

I had no Chemo yesterday as I have finished my scheduled 10 tough Chemos now.  Next we see where we are to determine the next steps.

Today I had a full body scan — Abdominal, pelvic and chest.  We are seeing how the tumor is doing (hopefully still shrinking!) and also to make sure it has not traveled anywhere else.  Obviously, I am anxious to see really good results.  I should find out Thursday morning when I visit the doctor to discuss.

I am heading again to The Villages tomorrow for three more Alternative IV’s.  They seem to really give me strength and power and to help with the bad effects of Chemo.  This fight is not for the meek!

Hope I have good news soon.  I appreciate any prayers and warm thoughts.  Cheers…

My most important decisions now facing reality in my life

 

death

Have not posted on this blog for a week until I met with doctor today and had what could be the final scheduled Chemo treatment.  I have some major decisions to make in next two weeks, so I had so many questions to discuss with my doctor.  Read on to see these really scary & important decisions ahead.

The saying above has become so much more real to me since I was diagnosed with cancer in June of this year.  My priorities have so changed, and so has the realization that we really are limited in how long we are on this Earth.  Anything could happen to any of us at any time.  So take this saying to heart please in YOUR own life!!!   Live each day more fully instead of planning or working so much of your time.  Love more. love unconditionally, forgive anyone who has wronged you and accept love from everyone — friends & family.  We do not know the future at all…. news like I had in June can QUICKLY bring you to your knees.

I had my 10th Chemo today and I do hope that I have an easier week than I had from the last Chemo.  But, even more important, I had a long talk with my Oncologist about the options ahead in the next weeks or month.  Let me first state that my doctor — like most doctors — places very little faith at all in Alternative Methods and all the benefits it has done to my cancer fight and strengthening my immune system.  Traditional doctors have not been trained that way and I understand that.  By the way, I do really like my doctor.  But he states honestly that he does know anything about all the OTHER options to fight cancer other than Chemo, Radiation & Surgery.  That is his reality and his training and I do appreciate that in him.

But we discussed today the real improvements we’ve witnessed in the size & location of my tumor.  He wants now to have another CT Scan next week and then have me meet my surgeon to discuss what they think I should do next — the Whipple surgery.  He says from his training  that this is the only possibility of my COMPLETE recovery (again, downplaying all the Alternative methods that could help).  His quote I could recover completely  …. “if I survive the surgery and the many bad possible problems AFTER this surgery.”  It could be as much as a 15% fatality in the operation or the complications.  I am not thrilled at all with those percentages.

So I have to make some real decisions soon…. and I can use your prayers & thoughts to make the right decisions.  The Whipple is a TOUGH and DANGEROUS 7-8 hour surgery where a team of doctors cut out most (almost never getting all of the cancer cells) of the tumor on the pancreas, some of the colon, the spleen, the gall bladder, and maybe even other areas (even though it has not metastasized in me) and then sew all these parts back together again.  It can lead to many complications in my insides, my digestion, probable diabetes, poor stomach & colon problems as my body would have to adapt to new directions of digestions.  There could be many problems., as you can see.

Or I could keep taking maintenance Chemo (maybe even pills instead of IV  drips), some radiation, and continue the Alternative Methods I am doing to see if it can totally shrink the tumor with that combination.  And then live many years (hopefully!!) maintaining my life with these great Alternative vitamins, pills, immune gains, etc etc.  My doctor has come to care for me a lot also and he would support whatever I decide.

There is no perfect choice — I must weigh so many options.  You all know I am a fighter and I have always been positive about everything in my life… as I have been about this cancer battle.  So, please pray that I make the correct decisions here and in the future.  I can not tell you how much your emails, prayers and thoughts mean to my morale and positive energy.  You help more than you can ever realize.

I have three Alternative IV’s tomorrow again in the Villages and I really feel these are so very good for me. Insurance does not pay for ANY of these procedures that I do away from the Chemo & traditional methods.

I send hugs to all of you and I thank you for really following and seriously fighting along side of me in this very real battle.  I feel I have a real loving army behind me as I continue to think positively and fight this fight as well as I can. I take the time to say again say here,  “Thank You!”