This morning, I decided to move the exercise bike a few feet to the left in order to have an entirely unobstructed view of the sunrise over the lake. Totally worth it.
Yesterday, after Wimbledon was over, we (read, Michael), had multiple conversations with multiple experts concerning my pathology report and delivered my actual slides down to the diagnosticians at the University of Chicago. The general consensus is that what Northwestern believes I have is most likely what I have, and if anything changes inside that, the treatment plan is still appropriate or can be tinkered with as we move along.
So, we decided to give me one more day of feeling good and like myself, and we’re starting R-EPOCH chemotherapy tomorrow. I got a few more details today…I will be getting an infusion of one medicine (mono-clonal antibody — NOT chemotherapy) (R) for about 8-10 hours at least, followed by a 96-hour continuous infusion of a combo of three chemos, followed by an hour of the last. Prednisone (P), will be administered throughout. Then they’ll keep me for a day of observation. So my expectation of 4 days in-patient is looking more like 5-6 days and hopefully I’ll be home by Friday.
One piece of good news…my doctor told me this morning that the tumor has shrunk dramatically as a result of the horse doses of steroids I’ve been getting (they can tell because of the vein decompression — I’m not swollen anymore), which means that it’s generally unstable. Growing quickly but easily thwarted.
I’ve gotten a couple questions about surgery. Given the location of the tumor and the type of the cancer, the tumor is inoperable. Too much stuff to damage (heart, lungs, major blood vessels, trachea, larynx, etc). (Which actually is one of the reasons we found it so quickly…too many things to mess with as it grew…in my case, heart and major vein.) The chemo procedure will “melt” the tumor, and the cancer cells will be passed through the kidneys for disposal (yes, I will pee my cancer out).
My hydro-therapy of the day involved washing my hair, which was highly necessary and a great excuse to hang out in the shower for another 30 minutes. I have no expectation that it will be around for much longer, so I took my time.
I have no idea how I will be feeling over the next few days, so I’ll happily continue to take all of your loving thoughts that you send my way, and I’ll be in touch when I can.