Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Radiation Ends Early

Rudy's lab work today showed his platelets were down even lower.  The radiologist said we could still continue radiation, but when he realized we were set to start immunotherapy next week, he decided to stop radiation now.  It's already done what we wanted - cut the back pain.  Rudy only had 3 days left anyway.  Radiation is rough on platelets so having the extra days for his body to heal will help.  

Dr. Hyde said immunotherapy is "the best thing since sliced bread"
and is more important for Rudy than having more radiation.

At CTCA, when a patient finishes chemo or radiation, they have a little celebration.  When the patient comes out they ring a bell.

Rudy was a little surprised at how much he enjoyed the celebration.

They gave him a t-shirt, a cupcake and a few other little goodies. 

We thought our celebration was set for Friday, so we were totally unprepared. Rudy and I were dressed like slobs.  Linda and Nancy just happened to be there. They come for all the doctor appointments, but usually, it's just Rudy and I for radiation.  A bunch of CTCA folks who happened to be nearby joined in.  

One of the ladies who joined in the celebration was a housekeeping lady that we have all fallen in love with.  This lady is truly a ray of sunshine to everyone she meets.

This is the radiation receptionist who has greeted us most days for the past month.  This is a terrible photo of her - she's cute as a button.  
Once home, we were both exhausted.  Neither of us have slept well the last couple of days.  I've had an attack of seasonal allergies.  I bought 24 hour Zyrtec yesterday and for 24 hours I was miserable.  I think it's out of my system now and I feel much better.  I was able to take a long nap and I feel like a new woman.  The allergies were easier than the Zyrtec side effects.

Rudy tried to take a nap, too, but wasn't so lucky.  His last radiation today triggered some hacking.  His 7 day Sancuso patch for nausea was ending and it takes a while for the new patch to kick in.  Bottom line - he's feeling yucky.  His pain is down though - he's trying out dropping down to 1 pill a day now.  It was 3 a day.

Around dinnertime, it got exciting.  We had quite a hail storm.  I sure hope there's no damage.   I took a photo of it, but the hail hardly showed up in the photos.  Most of it was around an inch in diameter.  They got a little larger for a short time.  I went to the porch and said, "Seriously, God?" and the hail stopped.  I'm not kidding.  I guess God knew I didn't have time to deal with insurance and replacing our roof again.

I'll be having a lot more conversations with God this week.  I really want Rudy's body to rebound so he'll be able to do well with immunotherapy.  If his platelets are not up, it may have to be postponed.  Even if it's not postponed, it just make sense that his body needs to be in good shape in order for his immune system to wage a war against those cancer cells.

Also, he needs to put on some weight. He's down to 172 pounds.  That just won't do.  His appetite it practically non-existent.  I'm not known for my cooking skills, but I'm doing the best I can to make things that will tempt him. I'm failing miserably.  If anyone has extras of something yummy that's not too rich or spicy, bring it on over!  Don't bring a whole casserole - just enough for one serving.  His taste buds are still way off from chemo and there are lots of things he used to love that taste terrible right now.  His current favorite food are fried eggs.  We haven't eaten fried eggs in years.  Gooey, rich casseroles - especially the kind with condensed soups - disgust him.  Once I find a food he likes, I run it into the ground because it's so hard to think of what to cook that might tempt him.  The dogs take care of our leftovers and they've never had it so good.

Speaking of pets, have I shown this photo already?  I can't remember.  Little George looks so sweet as he sleeps snuggling up to Sadie.

Here's another pet photo.  It's a bit dark, but that's Sissy sitting in Shirley's cow chair.  I put a big pillow in the chair hoping to keep it pet-hair-free for company.  Sissy pushed that pillow back and claimed her spot.  I guess I'm going to need to make a slipcover soon.

I know there will be lots of people praying along with us these next weeks. Prayers have helped us through so many hard times.  We are praying hard that immunotherapy will prove wildly successful for Rudy and for all the other patients who are fighting.

One day, 
maybe the word incurable 
will only be used in history books.

I liked that sentence so well that I decided it needed to be large and bold!