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Old 01-15-2007, 08:56 AM   #1
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How is Patsy?

Hi Conan,
Sure you are busy, but wondering how Patsy is holding up? If I remember correctly she was due for some scans, but have not seen a posting stating any results. (hoping that is a good sign!) I think of you and Patsy often and cannot imagine the challeges you face everyday raising kids as we only have 2 boys and, I am exhuasted sometimes! (did I say sometimes, lol) I cannot thank you enough for the Christmas Party you hosted via the posting board...incredible!
Stan is struggling at this time. He had chemo last Monday, had a cough on Tuesday (still has) and on Wednesday evening came down with a fever and believe by Friday the fever was gone. (whew) He is not eating well at all and more quiet and withdrawn. He was due to have chemo today, but he had me call to cancel it last Friday so instead he will go for blood work. So I guess now the decision comes whether he will continue chemo or stop. Anyway, need to get Anthony working on a school project to keep him busy while we are at the doctor's office.
You take care and May God Bless you and your family,
Kim

 
Old 01-15-2007, 05:39 PM   #2
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Re: How is Patsy?

Hi Kim-

It is really good to hear from you. I have missed our talks. I peek on the board from time to time while working on other things. In a nut shell, I am trying set up a small venture that will allow me to work from home some and perhaps more so in the future. By mid Febuary to March I should have things in order and will have more time. Our oldest daughter has deciced to go back to college, however her motive is questionable. She changed to schools in order to be near her boyfriend (a relationship Patsy and I have tried to discourage). I see trouble on the horizon for her, but she won't listen to anyone. However, that leaves me with some adjusting to do as far as having someone to take care of Jamie during the day and pick Cathlin and Jason up from school. I am trying to talk Patsy in to letting them ride the bus, but she hates the idea.

Anyway, Patsy is still doing well. She has kind of leveled off, which concerns me. Wed, morning she is having scans, including bone scans ...followed by blood work, onc appt. and possibly chemo, unless they feel it is no longer effective. She has been grumpy, I don't know if she is not feeling well or just nervous about the scans. Pasty doesn't communicate like she should. She answers "I don't know" to about 75% of the questions I ask her ...ggrrr. However, I will try to post the results Wed. night if I can (it might be brief).

I wonder if the gemzar is what is making Stan feel so bad. Patsy usually get a small fever two days after, as well as fatigue. I can't imagine how you feel Kim ...considering wehter or not to stop treatment. My heart breaks for you all. I know there are so many things running through your mind. I pray you can have peace and find something good in each day. Stan is a remarkable man to have fought so hard and I trust he will continue to fight with or without chemo. I wish I knew what to say, just know that I am always available as I check the board regularly.

Stay strong and I will talk to you soon,

conan

 
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Old 01-17-2007, 07:59 PM   #3
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Re: How is Patsy?

hi Kim and all-

Today Patsy had her scans and while the tech have yet to analyze them, we were able to view them in the oncs office and get a general idea. Basically there has been improvement in the lungs, while the liver showed both decline and progression of mets. There is like a lesion in the spine and otherwise no change in bone lesions.

The conclusion is that she is off chemo for now. We are going to give Tarceva a try once we are able to run it through the insurance and Genetech's financial assistance plan. Hopefully Tarceva will be approved by Fri. or Monday and we will at least get an opportunity to try it.

As many of you know, I have been anxious to give Tarceva a try. However, I didn't anticipate the anxiety associate with moving to the next line. It Tarceva is effective that will be great, but if its not then that will be very discouraging as the options are far less hopeful. Ready or not it is time to move on. Oh what little control we have and such limited chioces to make.

I hope everyone is as well as can be. Thanks to Kim and all for the thoughts and prayers sent our way. God bless,

conan

 
Old 01-17-2007, 08:36 PM   #4
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Re: How is Patsy?

Conan,
Oh thanks so much for sharing the information so prompt! I was thinking about the two of you today and now I know why! Well, guess at least things have stayed stable and good to hear the lungs have had improvement, but sorry to hear about the liver. (sounds like some possibly shrunk and some grew based on what you wrote) We will pray that Tarceva will work for Patsy! You just never know, but worth a try given there are not that many options. Thanks for updating!
Now as far as Stan he had an appt this last Monday for blood work and was convinced he had low counts, but everything was normal so no shots for white or red. He was told he had thrush so they gave him a mouth rinse. I had always thought it was for infants, but guess anyone with a weakened immune system can get thrush too. He still is not feeling well at all and we stayed home all weekend and infact, he just is not getting out at all. He lost 5lbs last week so now trying to get him stronger if he considers chemo next Monday. We meet with his doctor on Monday to determine whether to move forward or not on chemo. (oh what a tough decision!) 5 lines of chemo is tough and not sure it is the wisest seeing how it knocked him down last week. We know ultimately either chemo or cancer will kill him, but guess what it comes down to is getting some quality out of it and not even sure at this point if he can gain his quality back. We talked about it for a bit today, but so torn as what to do and it is Stan's decision. We read about a Nascar guy (Pearsons I believe is his name) who had lung cancer, but guess his aggressive treatment they say is what killed him. You just don't know what route to take. I read something in the paper a couple of days ago about a man who was dying of colon cancer at the young age of 52 and they asked him if he was afraid of dying and he said "no, none of us are going to get out of this alive". Stan and I both actually had to chuckle as you never really look at it like that. But, you do wish they could see their kids grow up as I think that is the most painful thing for Stan.
I agree with Patsy about the bus riding situation as I had to break down this year and let Anthony (5th grade) walk home with a group of friends. I told Stan the only way this would happen is if he had a cell phone even though I told him he would never get one of those. There are times that Stan has appt.s in the afternoon and Andrew is on his way home from school or sports so I had to break down so can understand the way Patsy feels. Sorry to hear the oldest is making some decisions you don't agree with. (sometimes they have to learn the hard way and it is always tough on us watching poor decisions being made)
But on the positive side nice to hear you are working your way to being at home more! I know you want to be there for Patsy. You amaze me how you keep up with work, raise all the kids and care for Patsy and keep the house going! I am only raising 2 boys and have my moments! You get dad of the year!
I need to get Anthony in bed and still review a project he is working on. Have a good week and thanks for sharing the news!
Prayers headed for you and your family,
Kim

 
Old 01-19-2007, 08:28 PM   #5
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Re: How is Patsy?

Kim-

How are you? I hope you and Stan are doing okay and are able to enjoy the weekend. You mentioned thrush ...back in Sept. Patsy battled thrush during that horrible week in the hospital where she lost about 12 pounds, so maybe that is why Stan is losing a little weight. Hopefully that will pass with the thrush.

I have always liked what you quoted (none of us will get out of this alive). When I look at life that way, I am more motivated to "live it" rather than play it safe. I like what Shayne (my 16 year old) said about his basketball game last week ...speaking of how they played he said "we left it all out on the court." That is how I try to look at this cancer battle and life in general. Win or lose, I want to leave it all out on the court. Somehow, that makes it easier (rather than harder) for me to deal with all the backlash of cancer.

For now, we will be going to the Onc once a month rather than every two weeks. They are gining her something for the bone lesions, but I forget the name of it. Starts with a "Z". Hopefully I will fing out about the Tarceva on Monday. Patsy was disappointed with the results of the scans. But as I told her, the chemo did get her to where she is today which is a far cry from where she was in early Sept. I see the glass as half full, she sees it as half empty. BUt I do think we are at a crossroads. I think how she responds to the Tarceva will determine what kind of year its going to be .

I gotta run, but take care of yourself my friend. Don't forget to make time for Kim. I continually keep your family in my thoughts and prayers.

conan

 
Old 01-19-2007, 09:21 PM   #6
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Re: How is Patsy?

Hi Conan,
Oh, what a blessing to see your posting! I just finished massaging Stan's legs for a bit, but had to take a break as it is hard on the hands. He is struggling so much and just not doing well. He had a terrible week and is not getting better so not sure what the weekend has in store. He is having such severe back pain, but is very, very stubborn and won't take anything stronger than vicadin even though he has morphine. Thanks for letting me know how Patsy felt with her thrush....appreciate. I am sure it cannot make them feel well at all!
Oh, is the "Z" Zometa? If it is they described Zometa to us as a hairspray to keep the bones together if that makes any sense to you. I think they gave Stan about 4 treatments of Zometa, but then stopped stating if you have too many it can affect your jaw and have problems. I did some research on Zometa and it explains all to you and I actually ran across an article about someone who kept getting Zometa and had severe jaw problems. I remember when Stan got the injections I believe he got achy. I hope Patsy tolerates it and does not have any side effects. Keep us posted about the Tarceva and let's hope and pray it does great for her. I feel for her and cannot imagine the disappointment she must feel after all she has gone thru.
I too Conan keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.
Oh, I share with Stan my friends on the posting board and I think it makes him feel better that I have a release and friends that can relate even if it is on a sad subject.
Oh yes, I have been getting some Kim time and went to the gym everyday this week(ooops, missed one day) and feel so much better! Infact, meeting a couple of friends early in the morning at the gym so better settle down and call it a night. It is the best release I can get for my stress. (Plus Stan sleeps in so I don't feel gulity for going) I hope you get some Conan time!
Kim

 
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