Counts

The latest. Last week I saw my Oncologist/Hematologist. My mouth sores have not really impressed her. So we did not reduce the dosage of my maintenance medications. Just stay on a daily multi-vitamin with B6, zinc and folic acid. And well for this week no mouth sores. I also asked about the long term effect of these meds on my liver and heart. No risk to my heart. And she checks my liver via results from my CBCs. I will have to get more information on how that is done in my next visit. Overall my doctor’s take is she wants to cure me (five years in remission) rather than make me comfortable 😛 However, my white blood cell count last week was a little low, 3.5. She did say if it drops below that, then they will reduce the dosages. Temporarily.

Good news. Now my doctor considers me in 100% remission! She got all of the test results she wanted and they are all clean. Another bone marrow aspirate on October 26th. Sigh. This is getting all to routine.

Off to the Oncology office again today. CBC and Methotrexate shot.

REMISSION!!!

I have been dreaming of making this entry for a while now…

I am in 100% remission. My bone marrow is normal for a person my age with no evidence of leukemia or any other blood cancer! You know, I knew I would cry when I got the results, regardless of what they were. I am so relived. I have so many feelings right now it is really hard to describe.

Yesterday’s counts:

White Blood Cells: 4.2
Neutrophils: 2400
Hemoglobin: 13.5
Platelets: 249,000

Light the Night

Surprise!!!

Today I had an appointment with my Oncologist/Hematologist. I knew she was going to be putting me back on ATRA. But I did not know we would be starting the continuation round of the chemotherapy (my chemotherapy drug is Idarubicin). Well I checked out healthy (well enough for chemo) so we started it today. The next three days will be the rest of the continuation round.

I have been talking to my body and this time we are only going to kill off the leukemic cells. I am going to remain an outpatient. Meaning, no infections, no fever and no need for blood transfusions. Needless to say, I need all the help I can get. So I ask again. If you are the praying kind or the karma good thought kind, I will take your support. Why? Because I am selfish. I am young, I have a life to live, I have a young daughter to raise. I want 100% remission. I thank you for any prayers or kind thoughts.

A couple of weeks ago, my mother-in-law said “leukemia or any cancer for that matter is not for sissies”. I would extend that to any major disease (cancer, MS, lupus, heart disease, etc.) In all my hospital stays and doctors visits I have seen other patients fighting. In my book, anyone at any age, actively fighting a major disease is strong. Whether or not they survive is immaterial, they are still strong. You have to be strong mentally, physically and spiritually to fight a major disease. The day I went through my last bone marrow aspirate without morphine or sedation and then went and did physical therapy 15 minutes later, I gave myself the title “Bad MF” for the day (if you do not know what MF stands for, don?t worry about it.) I figure anyone that can do that, is strong, very strong. I am not boasting, on days like that, I surprise myself. I credit my God and my faith in God. I credit your prayers and kind words and thoughts. Again thank you.

Today I was introduced to a new site, Planet Cancer. It was started by a cancer patient that felt most cancer information is directed at pediatric and geriatric patients. This site is for the rest of us. It?s honest, dark and humorous, sometimes all at the same time. Seriously, in fighting cancer, there are so many battles, the treatment is a long journey (heck I am only in day 39, two years lie ahead of me), you have got to have some levity about the situation to get through it all.

Home

I was admitted to the hospital on Friday, April 1, 2005. I was discharged on Saturday, April 30, 2005. They told me it would be about a month. Talk about accuracy. It feels really good to ride in a car, to be at home, to hug my daughter…

My status is that, I am hematologically in remission. Molecularly I still have leukemia.

In two weeks I start my second round of chemotherapy. This time, as an outpatient.

The Next 48 Hours

I am pretty much at the height of the affects of the chemotherapy: neutropenic (no immune system), weak, tired and nagging aches and pains. In the next 48 hours I might start new cell growth. That means I will start feeling better. Until then I intend to lay low and rest. This means I might not be on for instant messages and might not update this blog for a few days. But I am still here resting, getting better, putting this thing into remission 🙂