January 29, 2009

~We Lost Our Power~

The ice storm knocked us out for a night and a day.

We're back now.

Thank goodness for electricity.


This is a view from our front porch.


These are views from the back window.




January 27, 2009

~My Heroes~



January 26, 2009

~Top 10 Things I'll Miss~

I had to think long and hard about this, but here are a few things I'll miss.


10. Janet let me do anything I wanted.

DOWNSIDE: I didn't want to do anything.

9. I didn't need haircuts.

8. I had the "C Card".

"OH!, OH!, I have cancer", and I could get out of anything.

EXAMPLE: Jury duty.

7. My eyesight got considerably better (seriously).

6. The dermatitis on my hands disappeared (seriously).

5. I didn't need to trim nose or ear hair.

And, the grand kids didn't have any chest hair to pull out.

4. I could eat tons and not gain weight.

3. I didn't have to worry about anything except getting better.

2. I had unlimited back and foot rubs.


1. I had a good excuse for being bald and stupid.


Ruthie brought her Mom and Dad for a visit.

She is amazing.

She'll be 2 on Valentines day.

She knows the alphabet and numbers.

She can count.

When asked who the president is she replied "Obama".

And, that's just the beginning.

Do I sound like a doting Papap?

Well, that's because I am.

No apologies.



January 25, 2009


We'll start down the home stretch on February 4 when I go for another pulmonary function test.

That test will establish a baseline for breathing. The next day I'll go for another CT Scan.

The Docs will use that information to place 3 tattoo targets on my chest.

After I purchase a leather jacket and Harley, we'll have a radiation dry run.

The Docs will use all of that information to program the machines and build a fixture to hold me in place.

Around the middle of February we'll begin radiation therapy. I'll go 5 days a week for 4 weeks.

The short term side effects should be very minimal.

By mid March we should cross the finish line.

Then, Janet and I can ride our Hog over to visit the grand kids,

and show them our tattoos. .


January 23, 2009

~Top 10 Things I Won't Miss~

10. Medicine

At times I've taken over 20 pills a day. Now I'm down to 7.

I might miss the Zoloft though.

9. Tests

I glow in the dark from all the scans and radioactive chemicals.

It does come in handy when I get up at night.

8. Doctor Visits

I like Dr. Hayslip, but enough is too much.

People were starting to talk.

7. Pain

I'm a big chicken when it comes to pain.

Came close to laying an egg once or twice.

6. Needles

I hated needles before. I hate needles now.

One stick took 4 different nurses 7 tries.

Another stick actually bent the needle.

I definitely won't miss sticks.

5. Bed Sores

They are nasty, painful, tenacious little buggers,

You might say they're a pain in the butt.

4. Chemo Brain

Some people pay big bucks to run around in a fog.

Now I won't have an excuse for doing stupid things.

3. Helplessness

For the past 7 months I've been totally dependant on Janet.

I'll soon be able to let her rest.

2. Isolation

I'll get to see my family and friends again.

This may be number 1.

1. Breathing problems

They ruin your day (and night).

I'll never take breathing for granted again.


January 22, 2009

~Wonderful World~

Six months ago a Doctor told Janet I was within 48 hours of a massive heart attack

and I had a tumor the size of a cantaloupe in my chest. Things didn't look good.

Since then, we've survived quadruple bypass surgery, seven months of chemotherapy,

two rounds of pneumonia, bed sores, oxygen tanks, countless tests, hospital stays,

tons of medicine, inability to sit back or lie down and much more.

Today, the Oncologist said he didn't need to see me for four months.

As far as we can tell, the cancer is completely gone.

But just to be sure, we're going to zap his hiding place with 20 sessions of radiation.

Talk about shock and awe.

At times it seemed like chemo would never end, but here we are.

Janet and I are so grateful to everyone who continued to give us support and encouragement.

It's wonderful to be alive.

When the radiation is over, we have a lot of catching up to do.



January 21, 2009

~Happy Day~

WBC has risen out of the danger zone.

Radiation will begin in about 4 weeks.

I will have radiation 5 days a week for 4 weeks.

When that's finished, I should be cancer free.

LittleC should be NoC.

Janet and I will be ready to party.



January 19, 2009

~Let It Snow~



January 16, 2009


It's cold outside.

The radiologist rescheduled our meeting to Wednesday.

Markey Cancer Center called and said my WBC has dropped dangerously,

so they want to see me Tuesday.

It's always two steps forward and one step back,

but that's better than one forward and two back.

For now, Janet and I are going to cuddle by the fire,

read good books, and enjoy life.


We got wonderful news yesterday about Ruthie.

2009 is going to be a great year.



January 14, 2009

~Scans Complete~

This morning I had a PET Scan, 2 CT Scans and labs.

The labs were to see if I need a blood transfusion,

we'll get the results of that tomorrow.

The scans are to check the status of littlec.

BigC no longer exists.

We'll soon know if he's littlec or NoC.



January 13, 2009

~How sweet it is~

The pneumonia is subsiding.

I took my last pill today and I'm feeling 90% better .

No hospitalization will be necessary.

General Janet has declared victory.

Tomorrow we go for PET & CT scans.

Friday, we meet with the radiologist.

Today, we'll just enjoy our little conquest.



January 12, 2009


It's so frustrating.

We're making progress but this two step forward and one step back is wearing thin.

The pneumonia seems to be subsiding but it's slower than we would like.

We had hoped it would be all gone today.

Oh well, we're headed in the right direction.

Pneumonia Spnuemonia.




January 11, 2009


BigC won't go gently into the night.

He's enlisted the help of fellow demon, BigP.

General Janet and I have Levaquin on our team.

If we don't whip BigP by Wednesday, the battleground will move back to the hospital.

We really don't want to go there.

I'm feeling better today and I think BigP is on the run.


January 09, 2009

~Status & Schedule~

01/08/09: Chemotherapy is complete.

I feel great except for this nasty cold.

I have a lot of swelling which should disappear in time.

I'm stumble footed, foggy brained and shaky but those things should heal.

My breathing is fine and that's the biggie.


01/09/09: Meet with oncologist (Dr. Hayslip).

Hopefully, we'll find out more about the state of my immune system.

We should also get a clearer understanding of where we go from here.


01/14/09: PET SCAN & CT SCAN

The scans will tell us about BigC.

The last scans suggested he might be barely hanging on so we hit him with more chemo.



01/16/09: Meet with radiologist (Dr. Merrick).

We will plan for radiation therapy.


The big challenge now is to avoid pneumonia and the flu.


January 07, 2009

~Goodbye Chemo Brain~

This past friday I took the last of my mustard gas (Mustargen) and Madagascar periwinkle (Oncovin) treatment.

Last night I finished off the nasty procarbazine and tomorrow I will bring this chapter of my life to a close by taking the last of the prednisone.

Hopefully, chemotherapy will only be a foggy, chemo brain blur of memories.

Thank goodness for chemo brain.

For the past seven months Janet has handled all of our daily problems while I've drooled in a corner watching spiders grow webs.

Now, I'll have no excuse. It's time for me to re-emerge and resume my place as a responsible husband, father, papap, son, friend and citizen.

Soon, Janet can rest and I'll take care of her.

Let the party begin.


January 03, 2009


Yesterday was my last chemo infusion.

Now, we just need to get rid of this cold,

avoid the flu and pneumonia,

and take radiation.

Piece of cake...

PET and CT scans are scheduled for mid January

so we'll see if BigC is history.

May you always have walls for the winds,
a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you, those you love near you,
and all your heart might desire.

HAPPY 2009


January 01 , 2009


Good riddance to 2008.




We love you.

January 1 is the birthday

of extraordinary people.



Beginning a new year with radiation...