Monday, June 18, 2007

CT Results

The nurse calls me with the results of my CAT scan I had done last week and everything sounds pretty good. I will see my oncologist I think on the 24th so he will discuss them further with me at that time. So, I guess great news so far!


Thursday, May 31, 2007

Cleveland follow-up visit

Well, I drove up to Cleveland with my daughter Katie and everything went as expected.
He was happy with my first SCT visit. He suggested that all my future testing be done down here and let Dr. Chowhan manage me from now on. The did a pulmonary function testing and it showed a little decrease in output. I think this is from the lack of exercise/walking. Looking for a walking partner! Chest x-ray and blood work was fine. He said that I need to have a CAT scan and he thinks it should be normal. Normal going into the SCT and it should stay that way! I pray that it does!
He said if I were to relapse, I was pretty screwed. At that time I could try Radiation. So we are keeping our fingers crossed that it never comes back!!!

We spent the night with Keith and Cathy. We had a great time. Drove back the next day and it didn't bother me like I thought it would. I had Katie with me to drive just in case I got sick or something.

I saw Dr. Chowhan last Wed. and he is going to schedule my CAT scan soon. Said I would need to see him every month and pulmonary/chest x-ray every two months.

Feeling pretty good and I will update as soon as I get more news or results of any test. Alan

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Doing ok!

It has been a long time since I posted last. SORRY! I'm doing ok. Still having some residual problems but nothing worth talking about. Eyebrows are starting to come back in but no hair on top. I'm heading back to Cleveland for a follow-up appointment this Friday and Katie is going with me. Business has been slow and I'm trying to stir things up to get my doctors to scan more with me. I have been maintaining my weight and still wanting to lose another 20 pounds or so. I have not had the energy to exercise but I feel like after I get my PET/CT scan under my belt that I will start working hard. I will let you know what the doctor has to say.

I will see my local oncologist next Wed and I gather he will schedule the necessary test. Later! Alan

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Doing well.

My blood work is still in the normal range. I have been back working a few hours a day and doing pretty good. I still can't find anything good to eat except cottage cheese and fresh fruit. Maintaining my weight. I will need to head back to Cleveland for a follow-up appointment with Dr. Dean and after that I hope that I can just maintain locally and not have to return to Cleveland. I'm schedule to head up on May 1. It has been a month since I've been home and it is still slow going but I do see improvement everyday.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Blood Work looking good

I had some blood work yesterday and so far it all looks great. Blood cultures take a few days to see if anything is growing but since I've not had a temp. they think all will be normal. Still really tired and my nights and days continue to be messed up. I've been getting about 3-5 hours of sleep and I've tried staying up and gowing to bed when I'm really tired but no go. I will lay, toss and turn till about 6:00 am and sleep till about 10 or 10:30. Makes for a weird day. It's Good Friday and I would like to go to church but I think I will wait for Sunday and give it a try. Wear my mask and not shake any hands to be safe.

I hope all is well with everyone and you all have a great Easter!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Day +19

Doing pretty well. I've been home a week and just been laying around. Went to the office for about 1/2 hour and that was a bit much. Picked the kids up from school one day, drove home and that was a bit much. So, after SCT they tell you that you won't feel like doing much for the next 30 days, I'm starting to believe them.

Went to my local Oncologist today and all my blood levels were normal. He was surprised. He was happy with how I was doing. Cleveland has me going in every week for a CBC and I will have to drive back to Cleveland in 30 days for a follow-up appointment with Dr. Dean and I think a Pulmonary function test, to check out my lungs.

Here at home everything seems to be on the mend with the cat situation. Katie is still mad and not talking to Mom but it will take her some time. I rocked McKenna to sleep in my arms for about an hour. She is crawling and has gained 5 pounds since I last saw her. While holding her I was thinking about my own kids how I just loved to rock them to sleep and it just brought tears to my eyes to see my baby Oliver now 15. Kids are doing great. Katie and Oliver are on Spring Break and they just wanted to spend some extra time here with me. They have been helping out a lot. Oliver passed his driver's Ed. test and he is dying for me to get him out on the road to see how good of a driver he is. Maybe this weekend I told him. Katie has been like Mother Hen, making sure Dad is ok. She has been taking Oliver any place he needs to be without question. Mal seems to be doing fine, working hard. Mom has taken some time off from work to take care of all my needs and I'm glad she has. Nice to have someone to wait on you.

So, over all I'm doing well. Will update when I get some new news.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Home again, Home again

Yesterday morning they woke me up to tell me my WBC was 9600 and I was good to get my catheter and infusion port out. Waited, waited and waited but they finally got started around 10:30. The port took about an hour and half to get out, all under local and the catheter took about 45 mins. By the time I got back to my room I had missed my ride. My friend Eric had to pick me up by noon in order to get back in time for work. SO, Keith and Cathy after a hard day at work drive up around 7:00 and picked me up. It was so emotional for me to just get out of that place Knowing I was done!

I know for sure that Christ was with me throughout this entire process. Even to the point I was getting in Keith's car. It was like He was telling me "All is well" So comforting. We got back to Keith's and it was good to see the kids. Didn't stay up too late as we were heading out around 9:00 am.

That evening prior to bed I found out that my Mother put my cat of some 13 years to sleep. Why she couldn't wait for me and allowed me to no this is beyond me. She took the cat why the kids were in school and they nor I got to say our goodbyes. It was really sad and hard to get to sleep. It's not like he was going to die in the next month but he was going down hill. I would have done things differently for the sake of the kids. We are planning a little memorial service for him and put up a stone with his name on it. Sorry Boomer, you will be missed.

Got up this morning and took off to meet my sister and Mom halfway. The ride home was pretty uneventful except for my sore bottom. So, getting comfortable was a challenge. Pulled in the drive about 3:00 and it was NICE to be home. The kids came over around 3:45 and we all hugged and sobbed like babies. I missed the kids so much. I was so homesick, it was making me sick.

Tired, tired, tired. I had to take a nap to recover from the 6 hour drive. Got a little sick at my stomach searching for WATER that had a good taste to it. Could not eat much but Mom fixed me some noodles and butter. Kids have been great all night really helping me out as I still very weak and will be for sometime.

Anyway, I'm home, in my own bed, surrounded by love and it all feels great. I want to thank all that have been praying for me as I have felt all the comforting prayers. I have to go to my local cancer center tomorrow for some blood work. Other than that, I will try to post with any new news. Alan

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Day 10 Going Home tomorrow

HGB 9.8
WBC 7800 up 6500 WOW!

The nurses and doctors were all impressed with the jump I had in my WBC. They said I was good to go on Monday! I need a ride. If not, Tuesday will be just fine it's just another day I have to spend in here.

Doing well today. They have been taking me off the IV meds and giving me pills. So far, so good.

Breakfast was grits...YUCK never liked grits. So, I hoping for something good for lunch. I need some food on my stomach so I handle the pills before me.

Overall, I feel good about getting out of here. I don't think I'm going to miss this place at all...
Port and catheter is due to come out tomorrow. Discharge after that.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Day 9

HGB 9.5
WBC 1160 up 1000
PLT 65

Feeling a bit tired today but seem to be doing much better. I'm able to keep fluids down with very little pain. They are working me towards pills and not IV's and they do think Tuesday is the day. Met with the nutritionist today and she said it will be slow go for a while with foods until my intestinal track calms down a bit. Keith, my brother, The MAN is going to take they day off on Tuesday and the game plan is when I'm discharged to call my sister and Mom to start heading north. He will drive 3 hours and they will drive 3 hours to meet me. So, I should be home Tuesday afternoon~YAHOO! It's going to take me a couple of weeks to get back on my feet. This has taken a lot out of me. My one fat roll on my stomach is all but gone and when I slip my pants on, they fall off. I feel good about the weight loss, I just don't want to lose too much. Chaplin came in today and prayed with me. She could understand my emotional (Homesick) status but we prayed it up to God and all is good!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Day 8 Doing pretty good

HGB 9.5
WBC 160 up 80
PLT 21

My throat has been sore the biggest part of the day but currently it is like I can SWALLOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The pain is not there and I want to keep it that way. They said try no food just water for the next couple of days. They are also suspecting my WBC to take a big jump like possible 500. Once I get to 1,000 that should be the magic number for all the gastro intestinal pains and problems to go away. I won't be on a normal diet for several weeks to come they say and healing should occur PLUS I would be able to get out of here.
They are acting like the 20th! I will have my infusion port and Hickman catheter removed that morning of discharge. They will send me home with antibiotics for a couple of weeks to get rid of any lingering staph (I think came from the Hickman).

My weight is 247 and I suspect it will drop even more until I can get back to OUTBACK! For a juicy STEAK!

I'm going to lay down and take it easy. FELLING 70% better this evening!!!!

Day 8 Doing pretty good

HGB 9.5
WBC 160 up 80
PLT 21

My throat has been sore the biggest part of the day but currently it is like I can SWALLOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The pain is not there and I want to keep it that way. They said try no food just water for the next couple of days. They are also suspecting my WBC to take a big jump like possible 500. Once I get to 1,000 that should be the magic number for all the gastro intestinal pains and problems to go away. I won't be on a normal diet for several weeks to come they say and healing should occur PLUS I would be able to get out of here.
They are acting like the 20th! I will have my infusion port and Hickman catheter removed that morning of discharge. They will send me home with antibiotics for a couple of weeks to get rid of any lingering staph (I think came from the Hickman).

My weight is 247 and I suspect it will drop even more until I can get back to OUTBACK! For a juicy STEAK!

I'm going to lay down and take it easy. FELLING 70% better this evening!!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Day 7

Doing pretty good. My blood infection is showing staph which can be treated by pill antibiotics. So, at this point they want to leave things along unless I spike a temp. Still not had anything to eat and my throat is still sore. I have been able to talk and get some water down without it burning. Rectum and surrounding areas are raw which make it difficult to walk, sit and sleep (Get comfortable) I mean.

MB, the Oaks sounds like fun. I hope I will be up to the event.

My counts are going up slowly:

HGB 9.8
WBC 80
PLT 31 K

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Day 6

HGB 9.8
WBC 50

They came in early today and told me that they are hoping for the "final" culture results or at least the second culture they took in hopes that it is showing "no growth." Still may need to take the catheters out soon but not today. Once they know what is growing and what antibiotic will cover it, they will decide what I need. Most likely will know more tomorrow. I didn't get much sleep last night, I think I was laying in bed trying to figure out what side of my neck I wanted this new catheter. Anyway, I gave up on that after about 1/2 hour. They continuously came in and out last night adding more and more drugs, now I'm on another round of Lasix. I've picked up almost 4 pounds in fluids so it was time they say.

Still not eating, can't swallow. My throat is raw. REALLY, it is my entire esophageal track down to my stomach. My stomach doesn't seem to hurt and my colon seems fine (no food) that is a good thing. My rectum is very sore and that made it hard to sleep last night as well. I did get to sleep this morning. OVERALL: I feel better, like I have worked a 'bug' out of my system with all the antibiotics they give my I hope my cultures come negative! Either way, it will be ok.

The blood values should be going back up(they said slowly) over the next few days.

I've got to thank my sister for being my leas ion between work (Katie in the office) and getting things scheduled with my new tech (J. Michael). She is going to make sure that info doesn't get lost. Katie is a teenager and I've tried so hard not to over pressure her but I like she has to be pushed to understand the magnitude of this business I'm trying to run. I know J. Michael understands as I talked to him last night and with what I'm paying him, he could make that kind of money any were else. So, that made me feel good to hear that and hopefully he will further his career in x-ray to be a multi-phase technician.
I got yesterdays blood counts which were the lowest yet.

HGB 8.3
WBC 20

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Day 5 A lot going on

I don't have my lab values as of yet but they tell me it is the lowest.

Today is the day that my counts should start going back up!
They tell me there is an infection in my blood in which they think the SOURCE is the Hickman catheter or my PORT so both has to come out tomorrow or the next day. They try to tell you that you are just ahead of the game but it really feels like I took a step back. Once they take care of the source, hopefully they can get rid of the blood infection and cover it with the right antibiotic.

I got two units of blood and a bag of platelets along with a bunch of other stuff. My throat is felling a bit better, but it is still raw.

Not to happy but I have to really look at this as a step ahead of the game! It's hard but if I look at it that way, things look better. I was going to have to have the Hickman and the Port removed on the day of my discharge anyway.

MB. I've been thinking about you and the kids a lot. Please tell them I said hi! Hope all is well with you. Don't work so hard!

Mark, got your voice mail and all I can say is you are a dear friend to be concerned. Love ya brother! I'll be home soon enough.

Anna Mae and Bertha, the cards keep putting smiles on my face. Thanks!

Virgil and Roberta---What was the eye surgery for? Hope that is all better!!!!

Keith and Cathy, you know I love you guys. Thanks again for everything.

Barbara--I got your card today and it was the same card my cousin Barb sent me so it made me laugh even more. Thanks Sweetie!

HeatherZ. thanks for your kind words as well. Trust all is better with you.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Day 4 Temp/can't swallow

HGB 9.7
WBC 30
PLT 35
Temp 101 or so.

You don't want a temp in this place! They have stuck me and drawn more blood than they deserve. I'm not feeling to well. Hard time speaking and can't swallow nothing. The took me downstairs for a chest x-ray and they tried accessing my port (not the Hickman) and can't get any blood return. They are getting cultures on all the blood and urine. I really tried and all this needs to go away real soon. I think tomorrow the start giving me Neupogem in hopes that my white count will go back up. I'm going to lay back down,

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Day 3

HGB 9.5
WBC 60
PLT 55

Short entry: Feeling real crappy. Sleeping all day because of the meds. Throat on a scale of 1-10 it hurts like a 4. Can't swallow. Popsicles help and is all that I've had to eat. About 5 mins. about my temp. was elevated but not past the magic mark. Once it does go they will send me downstairs for a Chest x-ray and get some blood cultures. I will try to let you know how things go tomorrow.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Day 2 Sleeping all day long

HGB 10.1
WBC 320

Labs keep going down. My throat is like raw meat. They are giving me meds to make me rest and hopefully sleep. I don't even recall them coming in to get BP checks or anything. It's like I'm really out of it. They said tomorrow will be more of the same. They don't want me to do much. How can I with all the drugs they give you! I think I recall IT was 6:00 a.m. and I woke up at 1:00 p.m. I fell back to sleep at 2:00 and I awake at 6:00 and thought I better type something into my blog. They tell me it is most likely my blood counts will bottom out tomorrow. I feel like I have a bit of a cold working on but the throat is over seeing that for now. Developed a rash around my groin and the medication they give you helps that out just fine. I think since I have started up here with my outpatient stuff I've now lost a total of around 30lbs.

I sure I could lose another 30 and feel almost normal again. It has made it so hard (Steroids) that it makes you want to eat, eat and eat more! I've not had any real food for sometime and it doesn't look like I'll be able to eat for a week or more. They told me Day 5 I start getting Neupogen again to help increase my WBC...just when you thought you was done with bone pain, your not! Heading back to bead. Will try to post tomorrow.

Day 2 Sleeping all day long

HGB 10.1
WBC 320

Labs keep going down. My throat is like raw meat. They are giving me meds to make me rest and hopefully sleep. I don't even recall them coming in to get BP checks or anything. It's like I'm really out of it. They said tomorrow will be more of the same. They don't want me to do much. How can I with all the drugs they give you! I think I recall IT was 6:00 a.m. and I woke up at 1:00 p.m. I fell back to sleep at 2:00 and I awake at 6:00 and thought I better type something into my blog. They tell me it is most likely my blood counts will bottom out tomorrow. I feel like I have a bit of a cold working on but the throat is over seeing that for now. Developed a rash around my groin and the medication they give you helps that out just fine. I think since I have started up here with my outpatient stuff I've now lost a total of around 30lbs.

I sure I could lose another 30 and feel almost normal again. It has made it so hard (Steroids) that it makes you want to eat, eat and eat more! I've not had any real food for sometime and it doesn't look like I'll be able to eat for a week or more. They told me Day 5 I start getting Neupogen again to help increase my WBC...just when you thought you was done with bone pain, your not! Heading back to bead. Will try to post tomorrow.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Day 1

HGB 10.1
WBC 1320
PLT 120K
I slept well last night. Got some new medicine that is part of the protocol treatment. Something anti fungal. It was by IV. They started me on Ragland and Pepcid for anti-nausea. They keep telling me I stink from the stem cells. I cannot smell it but everyone that comes into the room will sure tell you.

My throat is starting to bother me. I attempted to eat a soft banana but it got hung up and I threw it up with about a 1/2 cup of blood. So, I just on a liquid diet for now. It feels like it is swollen and there is a knot in my throat. I hope it gets better tomorrow.

Pretty uneventful day overall.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Day -0- Happy Birthday to me.

HCB 9.8
WBC 2760
PLT 171K

I hate birthdays! I just celebrated one so why would I want to celebrate another one? I do understand the significance of this birthday but I really don't care. I just want to put all this in the past and pretend it had been a bad dream but I know reality will never allow me to ever escape this once diagnosed.

The nurses came in the room today and drew pictures of balloons, something that I guess looks like a stem cell?? and wrote Happy Birthday...stem cells do what your supposed to do! It was nice but I was not in to it.

The cells came to the room (like a bag of blood) and was pretty uneventful. The initial taste was like spaghetti O's. The smell was more like rotten eggs to me. It didn't last long so it wasn't that bad. I started to get chilled so I covered up and fell asleep. Woke up feeling pretty good. My throat is not as sore but it still hurts a bit. Overall, I feel pretty good.

I will try to update tomorrow. Nites! Alan

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Day -1 Day of rest

HGB 9.6
WBC 2640
PLT 224

Doing pretty good. I have been resting a lot. They gave me lasix last night so that means very little sleep. Up and down all night long. The fluids are now running in slow since I'm done with the chemo. Tomorrow I get my stem cells put back into my system and they tell me for the most part this is uneventful. I starting to get a sore throat and I hoping it doesn't get out-of-control. Still doing the mouth care thing. The doctors and nurses all seem to be real happy with where I'm at in treatment. They see so much I just hope they are not saying that. I went to a Post Transplant Preparation meeting talking about do's and don'ts post discharge. It was interesting. Everything is good back home with the kids. Katie got a $100 cell phone bill from where we were going over things from my office (which I thought she was calling from the office phone) oh, well, I guess I will have to pay for that one. Oliver is in driver's Ed. My baby...he is as tall as me! Mallory is still having car trouble and they are telling her it's her transmission. I don't doubt it the way she drives. I will let you know how things go tomorrow. Keith is on his way up to visit and bring me some laundry. What a good boy he is! Thanks to Cathy for doing the wash! (I got some more for ya). Love you guys! Alan

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Day -2 My last day of Chemo-FOREVER!!! I pray.

HGB 9.9
WBC 3870
PLT 241K

Cytoxan is running in and I pray to God that I never have to have any more chemo or anything else major with this cancer. My continued prayers is for God to eradicate this cancer from my body and I have put all my faith in Him that he will.

My projected discharge date is March 20 so I'm starting to look a head but they keep telling me to just take one day at a time, which is right. There are still a lot of uncertainties that can still occur with my health. So far, everyone seems to be happy with as well as I'm doing. I know a couple of my SCT friends down the hall are having some rough days. The Cytoxan has been running in for an hour and I've not gotten sick yet so I think that is a good sign. I've been without food for several days and I think that has helped a lot. One more hour and that bag will be finished. It is like I want to celebrate with a beer.

Anyway, I'm better spirits today since I'm not throwing up so much and I got a good nights sleep. I may update again later on tonight if not tomorrow. Thanks again for all the cards and comments. Everyone of them puts a smile on my face.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Day -3

HCB 10.7
WBC 4700
PLT 242K

Blood counts heading down!

Well, I got rid of that nasty Etoposide and I was doing well. The started the other chemo drug at 12;00 Noon today and it has made me sick a few times. One bag and it runs for two hours. The same thing is planned for tomorrow.

Mallory tells me her car stopped running and she thinks it is the transmission. Cathy got her to drive her old (Katie's car) until they can figure out what is wrong with hers.

Mom tells me she was robbed! Thank god she was not hurt and of all places...Going into bingo. Some kid just ran up to her and tore her purse from her arms and ran. She called the police and they have pictures from the security cameras but you could really tell she was quite upset. She said she hated to tell me but I told her that I can't worry about things at home that I have to concentrate on ME and getting through all this. She understood and didn't mean to upset me, if she did. I tried to tell her that I was doing fine, trying to stay strong.

I did get to walk a few times up and down the halls but the drugs were getting me a bit light headed. Going to watch some TV and get a shower before lights out. Connor, I'm going to play # 4 on DOND. Wish us luck! Miss you guys...

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Day -4

HGB 11.9
WBC 10350
PLT 284

I was wanting those shakes to stop sooo badly that the last bag of Buslfin went in at 3;00 am. At 5:00 it had run in and 6, 7 and it was around 7;30 THE SHAKES went away and I was able to sleep. I think I slept all day long. Still doing pretty good. Got sick a couple of times but it not as bad as I thought it was going to be. Keith and Cathy stopped up to see me and wash a load of clothes for me and we talked about NYE. NYE in the Caymans?? Sounds good to me. This is something I think out 25 years of having NYE together we need to treat ourselves with. We are going to look into the expense. No kids from what I could gather due to the expense.

Anyway, I think I on bag 13 of 15 of the Etoposide. Starting my new drug tomorrow and it runs a couple of days. Thanks again for all the sweet comments!

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Day -5 "The Shakes"

HGB 117
WBC 1O830
PLT 288

Night of the shakes! I was getting scared that something wasn't right. I was shaking so hard that they call in two other doctors to do a Neuro consult on me. These two knew their stuff and told me they had me on Dilanta for no good reasons but concluded that the Bulsfin was the culprit of my shakes. Yes, after the last bag went in the shakes went a ways and I was able to sleep for the most part of the day. I'm on clear liquids but that is coming up as well. I have been more sick with the Etoposide but I have just been trying to maintain, not throwing up all the time.

Hanging in there. will let you know more tomorrow. Heading to bead,

Friday, March 02, 2007


HGB 11.4
WBC 8740
PLT 269

Do ok today. Last evening I developed this uncontrollable twitch. It was growing in intensity so the nurse called in a doctor to make sure it wasn't some kind of seizure. He didn't think so and he thought once I get off the Buslfan, I should return to normal~without the twitching.

I threw up this morning and it was all chemical so we know that the Buslfan is working on my system. I will get two more bags, one at 9:00 p.m. and the last one at 3:00 a.m. Etoposide will be waiting for me at 7:00 a.m. As I understand the nurse I will get like 14 bags of this over 48 hours. It will run continuously. Monday will be the worse chemo drug (they say) that will be Cytoxan. That will run for 48 hours as well. After that I get one day of rest!

My appetite is slowly going away. I can't seem to hold much on my stomach. My weight was down this morning so they didn't give me any more Lasix. My labs were all good so no blood was needed. I got my bills wrote out and they are ready to be mailed out. I've been reading all my comments and I glad to see so many of them! They all make me feel so good in different ways. I got Anna Mae and Bertha's card in the mail. And Sue Ann has been updating me on church. I listed my address up here is a previous posting if you want to mail that to me. Otherwise you can call my Mom at 812-945-7642 and she could meet you somewhere. Thanks Sue Ann. That was really a surprise. I'm going to lay down and try to rest. Blessings All

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Day -7

HGB 8.5
WBC 7420
PLT 250K

Chemo Normal
HGB 10.0+
WBC 3,000-11,000
PLT 150-450K

Goal for Discharge
WBC >1,000
ANC > 500 (Neutrophils)

Feeling a little different today. Hard to explain but when you put your hand out in front of you and they shake, I have that a bit. My abdomen feels bloated and I've not had the energy like I had yesterday. I did get to walk on the treadmill a half mile and I may head back down there in a bit to get the other half in. They got my weight this morning and I gained three pounds which tells them I'm retaining fluids. So, I got Lasixs and you all know that makes you have to pee all the time. In addition, my HGB (Hemoglobin) was low so I got two units of blood. On top of the four bags of Chemo, Potassium, Sodium Chloride that also pumps 24/7.

Everyone here is very friendly and professional. Dr. Dean brought in the Pharmacology doctor to see what options I might have pre-medication (nausea) prior to me getting so sick that it may not work after the fact. So, they are going to try something before the new chemo that I get this Sat. They continue to say that I may be sick from the chemo-throwing up but I will be sickly after day -0- for about a week. Meaning: Lethargic, no energy, just not able to do much. They say the mouth thing is a big problem but I doing all I can to prevent mouth sores as they expect. So bad that I may be only able to have fluids.

Just finished dinner and I think I'm going to watch some TV and take it easy. My tech was scheduled for a big day of scans but the doctor rescheduled for next Thursday. This doctor is good at doing this, I just hope he doesn't do it next next Thursday.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Day -8

Everything seems to be going just fine. I've not been sick and I walked a mile on the treadmill today. Met up with a couple of my friends (stem cell dumping buddies) and I think they are still pissed at me for dumping so many the first day. As they tell me, they were there for all five days. Oh well, ever body is different. I suggested meeting up in SCT lounge for a round of Texas Hold'em. I doubt anyone will show up. The family lounge is really nice. It has a bike and a couple of treadmills, four computers, big screen TV and Lot's of food if you get hungry. Free coffee and I've had a couple of cups tonight.

My doctor came in this morning and was concerned with me being intolerable to the anti-nausea medications. He is thinking I'm really going to need something at some point so he wants to send the Pharmacist up to talk with me. They gave me something very mild and it upset my stomach. He said that I would get the 33 million SC put back into my system and announced that I would be getting Neupogen by IV for 5-7 days to help bring my white count back up faster. He thinks I'm going to do great but is still telling me the rough days are going to be 0-7 for sure.

Keith came up this evening to see me and brought me the much anticipated Ethernet cable so I could gain access to the Internet. He saw me behind the glass wall and was making fun of me. "Look at the monkey...look at the monkey" Ha Ha! Again, thanks for all the comments and I will be posting my blood counts as soon as they come in. Tonight is the first night to draw blood.
Four bags of Buslfin down much more to come.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner was everything I asked for. The food was hot and was really quite tasty. I got a shower and NO water pressure but it did feel good to wash off. Still taking care of my mouth with the rinse and washing. The sponge on a stick and baking soda takes a bit to get use to. It's like you wondering if you have bad breathe but I just drink coffee and say the heck with it.

I hope all is well at church? That is something I really miss. It's like I finally got a strong connection and I had to leave to come up here. Please keep me updated with any new news.

Now that I'm back online it feels good to IM with the kids. I hope that I can keep this up and keep the postings coming. Will update you tomorrow!

DAY -9 Hospital Admission

I’m here. Keith brought me up and I ended up in my room early. I made sure to bring my own comforter and pillows. (Thanks Heather Z) The bed has an air mattress on it that inflates/deflates by itself. May take a bit to get use to. The PA came in and gave me a physical and went over my history. I saw Dr. Dean on the elevator and he said he was going to take good care of me. I just ate my dinner meal, which was not bad. One down and how many more to go? My cell phone is working but the Internet connection in my room is not. I may have to take my laptop down the hall in order for me to gain access. The Room has it’s own air filtration system along with a glass door. Not bad. Got my clothes put up and hopefully take a shower here soon. They won’t let you use your own toothbrush for fear of bleeding gums so they give you a sponge on a stick, baking soda and two different kinds of mouthwash. I got all my pictures up and I’m winding down for the night.

9:00 p.m. is when they start my chemo (Busulfin) it runs for two hours and they will give it to me again at 3:00 a.m.. 9:00 a.m. and at 3:00 p.m. for the next several days. Vitals every four hours. I’ve been listening to my itunes, which if I didn’t have that, it would really suck.

56 MILLION STEM CELLS COLLECTED! 33 the first day and 23 the second day which was a ½ bag. They were very impressed! My social worker came in and we talked for a while. She thinks I’m adjusting well for the first day. She said she will check in with me frequently.

Nurse Kim is very nice. She lives in Akron, close to Keith. She went over all the drugs telling me that Busulfin is the one that is not so hard on the system but the other ones (two more) get worse as we go. She too, thinks I’m going to do great. Just hooked be up to a bag of fluids and gave me some Dylantin.

I’ll let you all know how I did through the night and will try to post tomorrow evening.

-9 and counting down to 0.

Monday, February 26, 2007

My address at the clinic

I found out what my temporary new address will be:

Alan Stewart
Cleveland Clinic Foundation/M50
9500 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44195

Admission tomorrow for the SCT!

Greetings to all!

We made it to Akron, OH with no problems. The ice storm was a bit north of us. We are getting some snow, but nothing major. My bags are packed and I going to be heading up to the Cleveland Clinic tomorrow around noon for my admission. Please tell your friends to pray for me. The HDlist has been great but I'm just going to post on my blog during this time...and I'm hopeful I will be able to post. Please do let all the people posting on the HDlist know that I'm following their comments and keeping them all in my prayers!

Today I'm having mixed emotions. It's like I'm scared but I'm not. I know that what ever is going to happen while in-house, I will be provided the best of care. It's the side effects and recovery that I think I'm so concerned with currently. It will all work out and I'm going to try to have the best attitude one can have during this transplant. One has to be strong when faced with a challenge. I'm starting at the base of the mountain climb this evening with Keith fixing me a big steak for dinner. They will drive me up tomorrow and we will see how things are going to be. They will start me on the chemo tomorrow afternoon. I will post tomorrow and let you know. Keeping the faith! Feeling the prayers! Placing the ropes for the long climb up!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Heading back to Cleveland for Admission

Well, things seem to be working out with the business. I found a tech and he is really going to give it his best. (I've heard that about six times now). I've been trying to train him for the last couple of days and in my mind we need about three more days for me to feel very comfortable turning him loose, but I'm out of time. So, all I can do is pray that he works out.

Being home has been a HUGE blessing! It has given me the break that I was needing from my "homesick" status. My kids have been great and I got to spend a couple of times with McKenna. She is something else. I was giving her a bath and her facial expressions were like "Where have you been Poppie"? I told her I was going to be gone for another three weeks but i will see her soon and she just smiled at me. Katie and Oliver I sense are troubled with me leaving again but they got it in their minds that it's only another three weeks! Getting admitted on Tuesday but heading back up tomorrow (Sunday) with Keith and his daughter Christi. We have been informed that they are expecting an ICE STORM. So what's new I say! I brought up the frigid cold, the most snow they had at one time and now ICE!

My Pastor is going to tell the congregation how I'm doing and ask for continued prayer for me. He is such a great guy. I do recall my social worker asking me if I wanted a Pastor to visit me on a regular basis while in the hospital and I said for sure.

As for me. I would be lying if I said I wasn't scared but I'm trying so hard to eliminate this unnecessary fears about leaving home, kids, business and throw it all over to Christ. He is the great healer and provider. He will take care of me and my family I know this. I just hope I don't get really sick, sick! It's like you can deal with throwing up but having all the scary side effects (uncertainties) I guess is what's so scary.

Anyway, thanks to all that are following my blog and praying for me. I really feel the prayers!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Continued Stress

I'm really glad to be home but I'm continued to be stressed over the business. My tech that I thought was going to work out decides today that she can't do the job. So, I'm searching for a replacement and for me to do the training in two days is not realistic. It's looking like I'm going to loose a lot of money by not servicing my accounts. Something just isn't right when you train six potential techs and none of them work out!

Again, I tell myself that I have to concentrate on ME. This is what I'm doing but income (my only source) is my business and I guess I'm just scared.

Kids are doing great and we went out to eat again tonight! They want to go see a movie tomorrow night if we can get tickets to see The Astronaut Farmer (I think that's what it's called). My car is still not running as of this afternoon which I hope does not put Keith in a bind tomorrow getting my car and driving it home. This dealership in Akron has just been driving us crazy over repairing this problem.

I'm heading to my local clinic in the AM for a potassium level check. I've been feeling fine flushing the catheter and changing the dressing daily. I'm not looking forward to returning to Cleveland but reality is at hand. I have to kick this cancer out of my system. I WILL DO THIS!!!!!

Oh, one more thing. My friend Bob who owns several quick oil change facilities with his brother Lou told me that Lou passed away and it floored me! He died unexpectedly at the age of 52. It really brought me down and I know Bob is devastated not for just the loss of his brother but losing his best friend as well. Sorry Bobby!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


I'm home! It felt so good to drive down my driveway. Katie heads out to meet me, hugs me and just starts sobbing. She knows how much I hate being away and I know she missed me dearly. Oliver came over after his Mom got back home from work and he gave me a big hug as well. Mallory brought McKenna by and she just looked at me kinda funny. I took off my hat and she saw my old bald head then she smiled and started kicking her legs. It's a routine when she comes to Poppie's house that we walk around and look at all the antique clocks I have and the way she reacts to a couple of them, I think I might have to make sure I consider those clocks "hers." We played on the floor and I'm certain that she will be crawling the next time I see her. I gave her a bottle and she fell asleep in my arms and I didn't lay her down. Just held her. She is a sweetie! Mallory seems to be a bit preoccupied this evening. Not for sure whats going on but I suspect she is just worried about her old Dad. I tried to reassure her that I was fine. I took the kids out for supper and I told them that the next time I come home I won't be as perky and they understood.

My car was driving me crazy today. I told the dealership that I needed to know as soon as possible if the part they ordered was on the morning truck. The girl at the office calls about 10:00 and tells me it was NOT on the truck. I told her my plight a couple of days ago and I know she was very remorse to tell me the bad news thinking I was going to be delayed another day in Cleveland. I fooled her! I stole Keith's car. Loaded it up and was on the road at 10:30! It was about 5 1/2 hour drive, which was good for me. Keith is going to pick my car up and drive it down Friday to spend some time with his parents. Heading back with him (leaving my car here) on Sunday.

Thanks to all the comments! Eric posted a link to my blog on his blog. I'm glad Heather Z is doing better and to Keith and Cathy~~Words cannot describe how much I appreciate you guys. Thanks! By the way, when I was taking my comforter off the bed this morning, I did find the snake. It's not moved for some time but at least we finally found it! SORRY CONNOR!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Last day at the clinic for now!

I got there early to dump some more stem cells and the nurses told me not to say much to the other patients because they didn't collect as much as I did. I said 3,300,000 is really a lot? They told me I dumped off 33,000,000!!!!! Holy cow I said. I just about dropped to my knees. That was really GREAT news especially when it comes to putting them back into my system. So, they got about a 1/2 bag today and my potassium level was still low so they gave me four more bags. I do have clearance to go home but still waiting for my car to get fixed. The part should be in soon I was told. I'm hopeful to get on the road tomorrow no later than 12:00.

No more antibiotics, Neupogen. Feeling pretty good.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Stem Cell Collection Process

Well, I got to the clinic early and the first thing they did was draw blood. I had to have a min of 5000 white cell and my platelet had to show a certain number before they hook me up to the machine. They told us (about seven in the room) to come back around 8:30. We got the results at 9:15 and they hooked us all up. My white count was 40.0 WAY UP from Sat. which they said was great. My platelets were still low but up to 80. My potassium was really low. I needed four bags of potassium. The collection process went well it was just a long day. 2:30 when I left there. My stem cell coordinator called me and said they collected 3,300,000. YAHOO! So all I need to do is one more bag tomorrow and I'm free to come home. Still having bone pains from the Neupogen but I don't think I have to take anymore of it!!!!

They called on my car and said the fuel pump was out and they would have to order one so I home they get it in tomorrow so I can leave Wed. morning. We will see.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Weird Day!

Got up this morning after a full nights rest. The pain pill helped with the low back I was having. Flushed my catheter, changed my dressing and gave myself the shots. Got ready to head out for breakfast and there was another couple of inches of snow on the ground. Currently two more inches has come down. During the first attempt to get to a restaurant, my car died. Would not start up at all. Called a wrecker and they took it to a local VW dealer. Hope to get it worked on tomorrow. While waiting for the wrecker I noticed a chip off my front tooth! Starting to wonder if it could get any worse. Keith's Mom and Dad were flying out of Hopkins Airport in Cleveland when we were watching the news a Delta flight slide off the runway but closed the airport down for about an 1 1/2. Last I heard they made it out. My bone pain has been gone for the most part except for my skull. It seems to hurt thus giving me a headache. Heading out to Cleveland in one of Keith's car at 6:00 for a 7:30 collection of my stem cells. They say the process takes about 4-5 hours. I'll let you know how it goes. Hoping for BIG numbers!!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Having some bone pains from the Neupogen

Got to the clinic at 8:15 and they took me right back. Nurses were so nice that we all said how nice it would be if it was like this during the day.

My labs: WBC up to 4.0 is is the low end of normal and my platelets were up to 39 but still low.

I could not get comfortable at all last night. Fell asleep at 6:00 and got up at 7:00. I having bone pains in my pelvis and low back and I also notice my skull hurting a bit which is giving me a headache. I brought some pain pills from home and I just took another one prior to bed and I hope it will ease up enough to get to sleep. Other than that I'm feeling fine. I need to give myself the injections tomorrow and Monday head to a different part of the clinic for my first Stem Cell collection. OR whatever they call. I hope they get enough so I can leave for home on WED. at the latest, to see the kids and do a little work in the office.

Keith fixed another great meal tonight and opened up a bottle of wine that was KILLER! He said he could have sold it for (I think) $500.00. Mom and Dad are up here and we just had a wonderful evening with them.

Calling for 3 more inches of snow tonight.


Friday, February 16, 2007


I've been doing pretty good today. Still a bit down (home sick) but overall I'm feeling better.

Went to the clinic and they got more blood which showed WBC 1.02 up from yesterday and my Platelets were 31 still low but both were up. It also showed a Atypical lymphoma cell which I was guessing it was my cancer cells, which got me a bit further down. They gave me my shots and another bag of Vancomycin. I need to be there tomorrow at 8:30 for another round. Sunday will be a day of rest and I will give myself the shots and Monday they will start pulling off my stem cells. The one thing I wished the clinic would understand that everyone doesn't "fit" into a standard, normal, protocol, routine. Like "You have to take you Compazine" (anti nausea medication). So, trying not to rock the boat I've been doing everything they tell me. BUT, I kept telling myself that I just didn't feel quite right so I stopped taking it for the last two days and I've felt much better. EVERY anti nausea medication has made me nausea.

Another thing. With all the Chemo I've had in the past, my blood values were NEVER out of the range of normal and this dumbfounded the nurses and my oncologist at home. He always told me that it was good that I was doing so good post chemo. I've always taken a dose of powder Glutathione, vitamin C, multi vitamins, CoQ10 400 mg. and got Detoxed every other day at my local Chiropractor's office. All this made me feel good and in my mind, it was working to keep my lab values from getting out of whack. BUT, my oncologist wants me not to take any of it noting "Vitamin C has been shown that it has encapsulated cancer cells" Did I do something wrong??? Maybe I should have not taken all that stuff before and maybe my labs do need to drop. That's what's been going through my head today. Cathy continues to remind me that God is in control of all things so I have to just let him handle me and I will be fine. If cancer cells are not being encapsulated by me not taking the vitamin C...this is good.

Katie tells me my cat is not doing well and she is going to take him to the Vet tomorrow. He is 12 or 13 and I think his weight loss is due to his age but he could have something else going on so we will see.

Mom is doing well and Oliver had his last swim meet for the year and he is very glad it's all over with. Mom said she gave McKenna a kiss for her old Poppie. I miss my grand baby!

Keith's Mom and Dad flew in today and it was great seeing them. Keith fixed another great meal and we had fun sitting around shootin the breeze.

I will let you know how things go tomorrow. Heading to bed.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Neupogen, low platelet count, wbc up a little, Vancomycin

I made it to the clinic today. It only took me an extra 45 mins. to get there because of the traffic. They get me back and hook me up to the Vancomycin, drew some blood which showed my WBC at .84 which low is 4.0 and high 11.0. Also, my platelet count dropped to 20 which low is 150 and high is 400 so they gave me some blood to help boost my low counts. They seem to be happy with my progress. The nurses were really nice today. The one is expecting her first child on my discharge date.

Keith's Mom and Dad are flying in tomorrow which it will be nice to see them. I've got several birthday cards and with all the comments~Thanks! They help to keep my spirits up!!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Yikes! Another year older and it really sucks. Turned 46 and I thought 45 was bad...

I woke up this morning with about 14" of snow on the ground and Keith tells me he is driving me to the clinic today! The road were in pretty good shape but for me to get there in my car, I don't think that was going to happen. Thank goodness for 4-wheel drive vehicles.

It's hard for me to express to Keith and Cathy how much I appreciate them. For Keith to take the day off for me...well, it's just hard to say thanks! As we know we are brothers not by blood but by choice.

You know this clinic thing just drive me crazy. Snow was keeping people from getting to the clinic so they are not as busy. We get the early 9:45 and my appointment is for 10:15 but they don't call us back until 11:00. Talk about pushing your patience. Oh well, they got me hooked up to the Vancomycin and got me my shots but my blood values were a bit low. WBC was .4 and low is 4. So, I cannot go out in public, have to check my temp 2-3 times daily, stay away from anyone that might even look sick! The thing they keep saying is WASH YOUR HANDS! I don't want to get sick for sure! I'll have enough of that real soon. My platelet was a bit low as well. I think they are waiting for the Neupogen to kick in and when that happens, my WBC should go up.

Thanks for all the kind comments and I will try to make the best out of my birthday. Spending it with my best friends family is a present in itself! I'll let you know what my blood counts are tomorrow when I get back from the clinic.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


Man it has been snowing non-stop. They are calling for 9" tonight and another 6" by noon tomorrow. I made it to the clinic by driving real slow and watching everyone else. I'm scheduled to return in the am but we will have to wait and see how the roads look.

I had more blood work today and the values were all normal. Neupogen shots given and was on the road by 12:00 today. The drive back was not bad but the road now look horrible.
I'm feeling really tired and not looking forward to tomorrow at all. Still trying to take things "one day at a time" attitude.

Thanks Debbie for the comment. Wishing you well too!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Neupogen/low WBC and low Potassium

Well, I got to the clinic at 9:45 and didn't get called back till about 10:45. It was really busy today, I was told. Didn't like the nurse to well as she was not very informative with my questions. I was under the impression that my WBC need to be high because of the shots I'm getting and the results of the blood count showed my WBC at 1.o and low is 4.0. I've been a little light headed (nothing major) but she said it would have nothing to do with my WBC being so low. I was also needing potassium. Which took another 2 1/2 hours for that to run in as well.
I had to change my own dressing and flush my catheter and I was getting to the point wondering if I was going to ask her or not to inject my Neupogen. Overall, I was not impressed with her but I'm still very happy with the facility. I'm sure I'm in the right place for this treatment.

Pastor Dave called checking in with me and he told me they had 317 this past Sunday 307 the prior. I talked with Larry and he told me that they continue to lift me up in prayers and many people have asked how I was doing. I heard Sally really enjoyed the FOG and I thought she would and for John and Amy, I will keep praying that they find comfort at MCC. I talked to Barbara and she seemed well. My employee Brenda went out for her first scans today...I've not heard from her so I hope all went well. I called Dr. Crowder and told him what was going on with me and he stopped what he was doing and prayed with me on the phone. He said that he would do what he can to keep my employee busy and he schedule a 1/2 day of testing at his office. Thanks be to God. I won't ever forget what my dear friend Matt told me over breakfast that business was down for a reason and it could be that God is telling me that I have to take care of myself. God will increase my business when the time is right.

Katie has been struggling to get to the office and there was a problem with the fax machine. 80% of my accounts fax their request to me so it's not good to have a fax number busy since Thursday last week because AOL was left on! We unplugged it from the computer and all is well now. I pray that I'm not overwhelming her with all she has to do but I know she is getting stressed out and I'm trying not to get upset with her, but it's hard. I'm trying to show her how important it is to do a good job with everything she does. Giving her some sense of responsibility but I keep saying she may be to young.

I talked with the Social Worker today at the clinic and she said she could see a noticeable change in me. No so worried about things and she was happy to see that.

WEATHER ALERT: They are saying that by the snow stops on Wed. 7-14 inches for this area. I have to just take my time and get to the clinic the best I can. Driving will be tough but I will figure it out. Tune back in tomorrow for an update!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Fourth Neupogen-doing great!

Feeling good! Slept well but was a bit itchy. Thinking the new antibiotic may be causing me to itch but nothing I can't handle. No hives etc. I gave myself the injections today, changed my dressing and flushed my catheter. All looks good. Went out this am and found a church I may go to next Sunday. Had a big breakfast and all is good. Keith and Connor went Boy Scout camping, -4 below wind chill but they seemed to have had a good time. Both are tired and I can see how this cold weather can take it out of you. Anyway, back to the clinic tomorrow for more antibiotics. It is supposed to snow like an inch or so.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Third Neupogen/Vancomycin/New Antibiotic

Doing really good today. Feeling almost normal now that I have that nasty Cipro out of my system. They switched me to Levaquin 500 mg. and it is ok on my system. Got up early today and the drive to Cleveland is nice on Sat. Morning. NO CARS! They hooked me up to the Vancomycin which runs in for about 1 hour and they follow it with normal saline for about another 1/2 hour. They drew blood and my WBC were 21.49 which is good to be high, they tell me. It shows that the Neupogen injections are doing what they are supposed to do. The normal range for WBC is Low 4.0 and High 11.0 Everything else was in the range of normal and the nurses said that is what they want. No temp, sleeping well and eating normally. Keith is such a great cook! Chef that is! I will miss his cooking when I go into the hospital and have to eat their food.

Thanks Virgil and Roberta! All is well on the home front. Love you guys too!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Second Neupogen and Vancomycin

Went to the clinic today and before I could get out of the drive I got sick. I'm 90% it's the Cipro they are making me take twice a day. Every time I take it I get sick. They are going to see about getting me something else. I got Vancomycin?sp today at the clinic and they gave me my Neupogen shots, changed my dressing and I was there for about an 1-1/2 hours. It has warmed up a bit today I think they said 13 and the sun is out melting some of the snow. I'm doing ok just tried and sick of getting sick when I know it's the Cipro. They told me I had to take my meds or I may end up in the hospital. GET ME THE RIGHT MEDS and I will be fine! My abdomen hurts from throwing up. I have to head to the clinic in the am for more antibiotics. I'll let you know if they get my meds straighten out. They treat everyone the same as if everyone can take the same (protocol) meds and they act like it's your some degree. Everybody is not the same.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

First Neupogen shot

Feeling better today. Tired but that is going to be the norm I'm sure. I changed the dressing and flushed the catheter out this morning. Had to give myself two shots of Neupogen in my belly. Didn't hurt, but not really wanting to do this everyday! No side effects yet. They say it may make your bones hurt. I hope it doesn't. Heading to the Clinic in the AM for IV antibiotics. I'll let you all know how that goes and if they do anything else. I'm taking the Neupogen with me tomorrow so the nurse can give it to me. It is suppose to snow tonight. All seems well on my home front. Missing my family as it doesn't take me long to get homesick!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Pretty rough day.

Well, it got on the road at 7:45 and go to the Cleveland Clinic for my 9:00 training that didn't start till 10:00 but it went really fast since I knew the basic of wound care etc. I have to change the dressing and flush the lines out everyday. No biggy. They go me all hooked up with the chemo around 11:00 and I finished up at 6:00. Drove home and as soon as I got in the door I was throwing up. This went on for about 4 hours and some nasty cold, bone shaking chills. That only lasted while I was throwing up. As soon as I layed back down, things were fine. I did get to sleep and right now I feel a bit tired which is part of it. No more chemo until I'm admitted. I think I'm going to start getting large doses of antibiotics. Currently have a nasty taste in my mouth that I've been trying to get rid of. I will start giving myself injections of the Neuprogen on Thursday and I start taking Cipro an antibiotic by mouth this evening. They said if I were to spike a temp of 100.5 I would have to be admitted.

So, today is just a day of rest with nothing planned. I going to change my dressing, get a shower and work this nasty taste out of my mouth.

Thanks for all the comments you've been posting. They make me feel good and cheer me up.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Hickman line in place. IT'S COLD!

Man it's COLD! -4 in Cleveland with a wind chill of like -20.

I got to the clinic early this morning for an ekg, blood work etc. I got to see Dr. Dean and he was very happy with how well the ICE went. We talked a bit about the SCT process and he thinks I'm going to do just fine. He said he would like for me to have 7,000,000. stem cells and I told him that was a lot more than what I thought I was going to have to give. I told him that I would like very much to go home but that may not happen. It just depends on how much they get the first couple of days when they draw off the stem cells.

Went over to the hospital and got my Hickman line placed in my left chest wall with very little discomfort. Came home and took a 4 hour nap. Will need to head back up tomorrow morning for them to show me how to flush the lines and get a large dose of Etopiside. That is the E in ICE but I will be getting a much larger dose he said. May cause chills (I had to laugh since it was so cold up here) and nausea.

It is going to be even colder tomorrow. No school tomorrow. Everything back home seems to be in order so one day down and looking ahead!

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Getting Ready!

Well, my spirits are high. I'm in Akron, OH and made it up in about 5 1/2 hours. Said my goodbyes to my family (which was hard) but I'm concentrating on ME! I'm going to kick some butt on everything the doctors tell me to do. Getting my Hickman line put in tomorrow and I get to see Dr. Dean, my oncologist.

Keith and Cathy are great! They fixed their spare bedroom up for me and I know it was no easy task to move all the stuff they had, elsewhere. We have discussed my schedule a bit more and they will do whatever it takes to get me through this. I have all my clothes out of suitcases in easy access in the closet. There is no school tomorrow for Christi and Connor as the temp. is near -0-.

Finished Lance Armstrong's book on tape "Every Second Counts" and he is a great motivator and makes you look at things in a different light. I think the one thing I got that hit me hard regarding his cancer treatment was "Misery is a cure" One needs to think about that. He went on to talk about all the smells in the hospital that a cancer patient has to deal with that you will never forget. The bed sheets, the bad food, the night of no sleep. Interesting to say the least.

I will let you know how things go tomorrow. Nites!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Consult with Dr. Chowhan/Test results

I got great news today! All the test I had in Cleveland~NORMAL~!!!!!!

I saw Dr. Chowan today in New Albany and he was very encouraging. I think he said "Hang tough and it will all be over with soon". He even made me an appointment to see him one week after my projected release from the hospital. I gave him my calendar and he went over it with great detail and asked me about some things and if I had any questions or concerns that he could address. Overall, I felt pretty good and I know I have to keep him in the loop for my follow-up care. I'm glad that Cleveland is also sending him my test results.

Still feeling really good and looking hard to find someone to work for me. I will let you know more when I have more news!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Back from Cleveland


Two full days of testing at the Cleveland Clinic. I'm feeling better about the SCT and the whole process. I got the results of my CAT scan which was NORMAL! This is great news showing that the two cycles of ICE I had did it's job! I was told I no longer needed a third cycle of ICE which sounds good to me.

I had such a great time with Keith, Cathy and the kids. It's one of those things that words can't describe how much I appreciate you guys and all that you are doing for me. It looks like you will be seeing more of me real soon. Hope your finger you cut off and that super glue you used WORKED!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


Sorry it has taken me so long to update you all. I’ve been doing pretty well and I have been trying to nail down some dates with Cleveland and I got them yesterday.


1/17/07 Drive to Akron for outpatient testing in Cleveland in the AM.
1/18/07 9:00 Meet with Social Worker
10:30 Meet with Transplant Coordinator
12:00 Meet with Financial Coordinator
12:15 Meet with ID Research
12:45 Labwork
1:20 CT Neck with contrast
2:00 Pulmonary Function Test
2:40 Heart Echo

Head back to Akron

1/19/07 10:00 PET Scan/CT Scan of chest/abd/pelvis
1:15 Bone Marrow Prep
1:45 Bone Marrow Biopsy *May need a ride

Spend the night in Akron drive home the next day.

1/22/07 Start third cycle of ICE in New Albany 8:00-4:00
1/23/07 “ “
1/24/07 “ “
1/25/07 “ “
1/26/07 Remove pump from port 8:30 am

2/4/07 Head to Cleveland
2/5/07 8:00 Ekg, Labwork,
8:30 Consult with Dr. Dean
9:15 Chest X-ray
10:15 Surgical Prep for catheter placement in Radiology
2/6/07 9:00 Hematology/Oncology Catheter teaching with RN

2/8/07 Neupogen
2/9/07 Neupogen-Chemo Treatment
2/10/07 Neupogen-Chemo Treatment
2/11/07 Neupogen
2/12/07 Neupogen-Labs-Chemo Treatment
2/13/07 Neupogen-Labs-Chemo Treatment
2/14/07 (MY BIRTHDAY) Neupogen-Labs-Chemo Treatment
2/15/07 Neupogen-Labs-Chemo Treatment
2/16/07 Neupogen-Labs-Chemo Treatment
2/17/07 Neupogen-Labs-Chemo Treatment
2/18/07 Neupogen

(Now, it is my understanding that these dates may change if they collect enough stem cells-so, if the dates change, I will try to update daily)

2/19/07 Stem Cell Collection with Neupogen -17
2/20/07 Stem Cell Collection with Neupogen -16
2/21/07 Stem Cell Collection with Neupogen -15
2/22/07 Stem Cell Collection with Neupogen -14
2/23/07 Stem Cell Collection -13
2/24/07 ? Day of rest -12
2/25/07 ? Day of rest -11
2/26/07 ? Day of rest -10
2/27/07 ADMISSION Busulfan/Chest-x-ray -9
2/28/07 Busulfan -8
3/1/07 Busulfan -7
3/2/07 Busulfan -6
3/3/07 Busulfan and Etoposide -5
3/4/07 Etoposide -4
3/5/07 Cytoxan -3
3/6/07 Cytoxan -2
3/7/07 Day of Rest -1
3/8/07 Stem Cell Infusion 0
3/9/07 +1
3/10/07 +2
3/11/07 +3
This will continue till a hopeful discharge around +15. Most likely stay in Akron for a couple of days to make sure no problems. Will need Keith to take me home. (I’m thinking)