Sunday, April 14, 2013

April Update

It's been awhile since an update about v.  He had a nice seven week break from his chemo, and had been in a partial remission.  Unfortunately a PET scan late last month revealed that the tumors are once again active and growing.  They are still much smaller than he started out with back in October.  However he has also been found to be quite anemic and deficient in iron.

Last week he underwent another  Upper GI scope and was found to have esophageal ulcers which were causing him a lot of discomfort.  Happily, the gastroenterologist also reported that the esophageal tumor looks much smaller from what he saw in October.  He says that it is difficult to visualize, though, due to the ulcerations. He has v on a new medication that is classified as a proton-pump inhibitor.  After two days worth of doses his pain was gone and he has been able to enjoy a nearly normal diet.

He has started on a new chemo drug (new for him) which is intravenous only. He receives infusions once a week for three weeks and then has a week off before beginning the cycle again.  Eventually he will have some hair loss.  He has beautiful curly hair, but he is far more beautiful than any hair he will lose.

He's just midway through the second week of the new infusions.  Last week was very difficult for him due to the epigastric discomfort he was experiencing.  This week has been better.  The side effects are supposed to be milder with this "new" drug, but he seems to experience his usual two and a half days of being down.  For his anemia he is receiving iron infusions.  So, he is doing okay, but he is weak.  With his discomfort and the fasting for the test earlier this week he lost some weight, but we will work on that.  Sometimes he needs a little extra encouragement to remember to eat.  It's a balancing act. We both are on a tightrope here.

As always we are buoyed by the love and care of our friends.  Without their understanding and support we would crumble under this pressure.

But I must admit, the garden has suffered. Not only from the time and energy taken away by care for v, but after losing our dear Hannah last year we didn't think about spreading our annual bales of straw over the fall garden when we put it "to bed".  We always spread the straw with the intent of keeping mud out of the house.  It never occurred to us that we were also keeping many, MANY weeds at bay.  So, when time and energy permits, we are hacking through a jungle of growth out there in the back garden.  Oh My!

But for pretty spring garden pictures I will post a couple that I have used for inspiration in our front garden. Cerinthe and Abutilon from a garden we admired in Mendocino last month.

And from around our front parlor window, Banksia roses:

In bocca al lupo.  m & v

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the update on v. I loved what you said about his future hair loss. And what an absolutely beautiful photo you began this post with. Keep on, both of you. B