The Last Radiation Treatment
Well, we MADE IT through the treatment! No more waking up early just to get to radiation every day. No more Monday all day chemo sessions. Hopefully, no more hydration appointments. Now the healing can begin. It will take months before Mike is feeling like his old self, but in just a few weeks we should begin seeing improvement.
It’s somewhat of a letdown that you finish your treatment and get to ring the bell, but you don’t feel any different. Everyone thinks that once you hit that “end of treatment date” you will magically be better. Mike and I have always said that we will be better by Christmas. That’s our date. Of course, we hope and pray that it will be sooner. The doctors are telling us that in 2 (ish) weeks, we will start seeing some improvement. But it’s a long haul. So much damage was done from the treatment. Mike is down under 150 pounds – even less than his high school weight :). His throat is incredibly sore – inside and out. He is still nauseous and only taking nutrition through his feeding tube. This journey is one he doesn’t wish on his worst enemy (words from his own lips). He won’t open his mouth because he worries it’s too gross, so he doesn’t talk much or smile. But before you get depressed, let me share some highlights of last weekend!
The feeding tube was going so well and he was finally able to get some calories and much needed nutrients in him! That gave him so much more energy. He was feeling much better. We had held out as long as we could but it was time to give in, and boy, are we glad we did! He is doing all his own feedings, and managing that really well. On Sunday, we bravely watched our Seahawks lose in OT to the Bengals. That was so sad. We blew a 17 point lead – and they scored 20 unanswered points. But I digress… Since I was in a bit of a funk from the game, Mike suggested that we go up to Rattlesnake Lake and take a walk and enjoy the Fall colors. Seattle is SOOO beautiful in the Fall. We went on a nice long walk, exploring the empty lake (we really need some rain – you can see how empty the lake is) and getting lost in the leaves. It was so nice and crisp out. Mike felt so good!
We had a good weekend, and really felt like Mike was on the mend. Then, Sunday night his feeding tube got clogged and he couldn’t eat or take his meds. We tried all the home remedies – warm water, squeezing the tube, adding coke to it and letting it dissolve the clog. All to no avail. So, Monday he had to get his last radiation, get blood work done, and see the Oncologist (who is AWESOME by the way – Dr. Kaplan – half of Seattle knows who he is and everyone loves him). Then, we went home to try again to unclog it. Nothing worked, so we wound up in the Emergency Room and Mike had to get surgery again – they put in a new tube. Ugh!!! And, to make matters worse, the doctor had talked him into getting a flu shot, so he was feeling nauseous from that. Really? Really? So, needless to say Monday was not the best day.
Today is Tuesday however, and that is a whole new day. This morning was a bit rough, but today while I was at work, Mike felt well enough to do a little shopping at REI. I am so glad. I hate leaving him at home alone all day. But, I am sure he was glad to have some time to himself.
I had planned a trip to Palm Springs with Noelle for this weekend, and Mike and Austen pretty much talked me into still going, to get a break. So, I am going to go. I have very mixed feelings about going, but I thoroughly trust that the kids can take care of Mike. Austen will move into the house for the weekend, so all the kids will be home. Hunter has been helping all along, and I know Kasey will step up as well. So, off for a girls weekend to refresh my energy and be ready for the next 2 months. These last 2 months have been quite a journey!
This is my buddy, Noelle!
So, again, I need to thank my angels. You are ALL angels! Special thanks to Karen for my yummy pumpkin bread (and no I did not freeze any of it, because I ate it all!), Tim & Patsy for the lovely garden, Rick & Liz for the incredible flowers (see below), Kat & Guy for the special dinner, Jane for taking me out for shopping and cocktails :), and so many for cards, notes, prayers, calls, and more. There are literally too many people to mention. We are so fortunate to have you in our lives. We love you!
Here’s to another good week. Remember to hug your loved ones and enjoy every day of your life!