Saturday, April 18, 2009

My Attempt

This is going to be my attempt at a post. Bear with me. At times it may not make sense, so I do apologize. Apparently, some of the drugs they have me on do some pretty crazy things to me. Luckily, Cody has been with me most of the time and has caught me before I did something too stupid. Although, I am pretty sure that I ordered a vacuum one night. For those of you that don't know me personally, I have a huge vacuum fetish, so me ordering a vacuum really isn't that odd. Ordering it at 4am is a little odd though!

I do believe the treatments have been working. I currently have 4 masses at random places in my body. The one mass that I can feel has certainly gotten smaller (can I get a Woot, Woot for that!). That is awesome! We already know that the Interferon never worked, I started out with those masses and the Interferon did nothing to stop them from growing.

Even though this treatment appears to be working, it comes with some nasty side effects. Vomiting, diarrhea, heat rash from head to toe, itching, restlessness, achenes, need I say more? I have currently had the pleasure of enduring all of them! Yipee!! The rash has been the worse. I have a bright red blistery type of rash pretty much from my calves to my shoulders. And it itches. Like hell! Benadryl knocks my ass out so I am waiting a little bit before I take it, otherwise I will be up at 4 am. And who know what type of infomercials will be on then!

I suppose the good thing about feeling so awful is that I haven't really been "able" to miss the kids because I have been so sick. However, the drugs were stopped at 9pm last night. I am officially "sober" and boy do I miss them. Ella gave me a baby doll to bring and Kyler gave me one of his Lightning McQueen pillowcases so I have been sleeping with those every single night. I did find out that they actually can come and visit so I think one of these times mom and dad are going to bring the kiddos out with them so that Cody and I can see them. That would make treatment so much better. It would make me stronger that's for sure.

The Plan:
We should be released from the hospital tomorrow. We are going to stay in the hotel on the MD Anderson campus tomorrow night and then fly out of Houston on the Corporate Angels Jet on Monday evening. We probably could have caught a flight out on Sunday, but we weren't sure when we would get dismissed and didn't want to end up missing the flight. So, better safe then sorry, right?

That's all for now. I do hope this post made sense. Please keep praying and keep us in your thoughts. I know I can do this. It's just a high price to pay to kick cancer's ass!!!

I Lied

I know I said that I would no longer post on the blog until next time, but Heather is demanding it. Currently the weather is not great, and it is raining and thundering, but Heather is doing remarkably well. She has energy, she has eaten, she even walked around the pod a couple of times. She should be released tomorrow and we are staying at the MD Anderson hotel. From there we go home on Monday, and can sleep in a real bed for a couple of weeks.


Friday, April 17, 2009

A Slight Change

If you know the recent Heather this is very different from normal. Her sleep schedule has been put the kids to bed at 8:00, brush her teeth and sound asleep by 8:15. She then will sleep until about 8:00 or so in the morning. It is almost like in the recent months she has been afraid of the dark, and when the sun thinks about going beneath the horizon she thinks about being in bed until the sun comes out in the morning.

Flash forward to Monday, and the beginning of treatment. The tide has turned and Heather has began to sleep a lot during the day and up more during the evening time. It is almost like the exact opposite of her previous self. I think that she is becoming scared of the daylight. Even our doctor today came into the room and asked if we ever turn the lights on here as had never seen the lights in our room.

This has started to make me wonder, Heather was/is a bid fan of the Twilight book series, and we own and she has watched the movie many many times. I am thinking that the medicine they are giving her is not really cancer medicine, but instead is vampire morphing serum.

After the 6 courses of treatment will Heather be a full blood vampire and only roam the nights? Will I have to fear the evil bite that might come my way. I am starting to wonder if readers of the Twilight series will all eventually become vampires of sort and those who don't get involved in the book are the only ones who are safe. Please beware of any medications that you might have and take, especially those that cause drowsiness. I think all medicinal therapies, now, are part of some master vampire serum scam. Please Beware! I will hope and pray that Heather will overcome the vampire drugs during the two weeks off and the vampire only returns when we are in this building.

Anyway, today started off well, and we thought we would make a day of it. It turned south quickly after 10:00ish. The way the dosage schedule is set up she gets the highest dosage on the first few days and then the dosage is lowered each day. by the time the worst of the side effects hits she is on a lower dosage and it supposedly lowers what I would call the "medicinal recovery time" (Don't quote that to anyone as that is a made up term by me). So basically the hard stuff she had early in the week is catching up with her yesterday and today, and theoretically/hopefully the days get better. She did finish the chemo section of this treatment at 9:00 today (Friday) and they have given her a medicine that should help with any fluid she has retained. I believe that we are drug free starting tomorrow, and if all is well we will be discharged on Sunday.

It has been fun, but I think that my course on the blog is done until the next return visit to Houston.

With Love and God Bless,


Today's a Better Day...So Far

This morning Heather asked me if I had posted again on her blog, and my response was no as there is nothing really to report of excitement in my eyes. I then told her I would put something up about how excited I am that the Yankee's lost in there home opener of the new 1.5 billion dollar stadium and all the money that they spend on a yearly basis is a total waste, surprisingly again she rolled her eyes. Obviously, she does not share the same feelings for baseball that I do, and the utter hatred of the evil empire. So I guess I will give a quick update of what took place over yesterday.

Heather had received her highest dose of the chemo and it really took affect yesterday. She had a very rough morning and really felt bad. However, the afternoon was better. Angie came and paid us a nice little visit and brought us a few little goodies to get through the rest of the week. Other than that Heather slept most of the day yesterday.

Since she is sleeping most of the day, she tends to be more of a night owl. She is even somewhat chipper at 2:30, 3:30, and 4:30 in the morning. This morning we had the wicked nurse of the east come in and turn on all of the lights in our room to draw blood, and Heather hardly even made a comment. I think she even snickered as I flailed to cover my eyes from the light that I swear was brighter than the sun. Also, I heard Heather talking on her cell phone at 3:30 in the morning with one word answers-like she was talking to a recording. I figured I was dreaming, but it turns out she fell prey to an infomercial last night,and I think we have a new vacuum.

In other news the kids had a great day yesterday with their Grandpa Snyder. He took them to the zoo and I think they may have even gone to a park. They ended the day at one of Kyler's favorite places to eat- "The Moose Place" aka the Rib Crib. Dad turned the big 6-0 yesterday, and they nearly burned the house down trying to light all those candles. Happy Birthday Dad, we will have to celebrate when we get back into town.

Blowing Out the Candles

Today is the last day of this round that Heather will be on drugs followed by a couple of days of fluids and then we take the jet back home. I will think that Heather will resume the blog again after we get back home.

With Love and God Bless


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Continuing the Updates

A quick update for today:

Heather has mainly slept today. She has felt well when she has been awake, but usually she is only awake for a few hours. We did take a walk today though, and made it about 15 yards and then came back to the room. This was a huge step in the right direction though. Other than that things have been going well today.

The Last Mommy Pic Before Treatment (I know Heather will kill me for this)

"The Christmas Tree of Nothing But Pain and Displeasure" as we call it

Ella at Easter Fitting In with the Crowd

Kyler Showing Us His Easter Goodies
Love all and God Bless,

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Post from Another

Hello All of Heather's good friends and faithful readers, since Heather is in the hospital and enduring through the treatment I have offered my services to put a few "maintenance" posts up for her. Obviously, I have very tough shoes to fill in terms of posting on the blog, but this is my attempt. It probably won't be as colorful, but this is a quick rundown of everything since last weeks post

Easter Weekend:

Heather's family came down and spent the day with us. It was good to see all of her aunts, uncles and cousins. The weather was beautiful and we were able to do many things outside. The kids (Kyler, Ella, Grandma, and Grandpa) searched for Easter eggs and played in "Jumpy-Jumpy" (I am sure there will be pictures to come). Saturday was a very busy day for us with all of the getting ready for this weeks trip, but we can't even begin to express how grateful and meaningful to was to see the family on Saturday.


Sunday morning came all too early for us. I had a friend of mine post on Facebook that, without fail, the kids will always be up early on holidays and while the kids did not get us up, we were up way too early. With the coming of Sunday we had an early afternoon flight to Houston, and not enough hours in the day to get ready. We attended Easter Sunday services, and had lunch with my mother. After lunch came the hard part- leaving. I travel regularly for work and getting away for work reasons, even for extended stays, usually is not hard. For these reasons, getting away from the house was very difficult. The tears in both kid's eyes was hard to swallow and Heather and I had to share a rough few initial minutes on the drive followed by strong missing them feelings throughout the week.

Sunday did come with many bright spots though. We flew with Corporate Angels and this organization provides free flights for cancer patients on the empty seats of corporate jets. This was wonderful and the service on the flight was more than superb. We did forget though to arrange ground transportation for when we landed. Oops. However, the Ground Angel crew was able to get us to our hotel with no issue. We had to squeeze into a car, but it wasn't that much of a "squeeze". Everything happened to workout perfectly for us on Sunday.


With Monday came hell!! We had a lovely non-neighbor (meaning there was no one in the hotel room) who left there alarm on. It started beeping about 10 minutes before our wake-up call and continued until we left the hotel. Heather went and got her blood drawn, this was the longest wait we had ever had at MD Anderson and was about an hour. We then went to get her catheter put in, but somewhere/someone did not pull all the blood work for the catheter to be put in. So we had to go back down for them to pull more blood work. This time it didn't take very long, and the cool thing was we actually heard the word "stat" used in an actual medical facility. I thought this was all make believe, but they actually do say it---all be damned. Heather even said that she told the nurse at the blood drawing station that it had to be done "stat" -- aren't we cool to be using the doctor lingo.

After finally getting the blood thing right, the catheter was installed without any real issue. They gave her a sedative and she was under strict orders to be in a wheelchair for a period of time. This was the fun part for me to zoom her around from place to place. We zoomed to get an X-ray, and then zoomed upstairs for a doctors appointment. Turning is a rather hard thing to do, and Heather has given me a hard time about my wheelchair driving skills.

After the doctors appointment began the fun of the day. We went to hospital admissions around 2:00 and waited and waited and waited and waited and waited and waited and waited. I think Heather read two large books, I read half of a small book and did a little bit of work. We finally got into our hospital room at about 8:00 PM. We got about two hours to settle into our room and then treatment began. However we would have preferred to start treatment at 8:02PM. First came saline for about 2 hours, followed by chemo 1 (lasted about 1 hour), followed by chemo 2 (lasted about 1 hour), followed by chemo 3 (lasted about 1 hour), followed chemo 4 (lasted 12 hours).

Heather has been amazing during the chemo treatments. The first three gave her no immediate side effect and at about 2:30 in the morning she told me if it is all like this then I should have no problem. Shortly there after the last drug was started and it hit her hard. She has only felt super sick a couple of times throughout the day, and slept a lot of the day today. She has gone in spurts though when she feels good for about 1-2 hours, sleeps for 1-2 hours, and feels sick for 1-2 hours. This has been repeated (in no particular order) most of the day.

Please continue to keep us in your thoughts and prayers. On a daily basis we continue to ask for both the physical and emotional strength to continue fight. I will not lie, it has not been easy and I am sure it will get more difficult for both of us, our immediate and extended families, and our kiddos. At some point in our childrens lives they might not remember this experience but when they look at their mother they will know that she was one hell of a fighter, with a will to survive that I am sure not everyone shares.

Thank you all for the thoughts. Heather, I love you, sleep tight and I will see you in the morning.

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