Monday, March 30, 2009

Beach baby

It's getting warm in Florida, and you know what that means... it's visitor season! Yay! Marina was here for a day and then Aunt "Soup" came to visit the week after. Next week, my best friend Tara is coming down, and the Casales are coming for Easter.

We love having guests. And this year, we finally got the guest room in order. So book your reservations now! We'd love to have you. (And thanks to Gannett forcing us to take another week of furlough, we certainly have the time...)

Julia was so crazy about Sue. You'll notice that I'm not in any of these photos from our beach day. Julia wanted nothing to do with mama. I tried to squeeze in for a pic and was summarily dismissed with a "No mama. Aunt Soup."

Mike's starting a new round of chemo Wednesday. He'll have one next week and then scans the week after. He's been feeling pretty good these days. We're still keeping our fingers crossed.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The next Annika?

Our girl is getting her first taste of sports... Nana bought her golf clubs. We're hoping that by having a sportswriter/tennis player/soccer player dad, Julia will have some athletic ability. Because lord knows, she won't get it from me.


Three clubs are better than one!

And when you can't hit the ball in, pick it up and put it in the cup yourself!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

In the news

Mike's weird, obscure, freaky cancer made headlines this week. It was the subject of an article on a new genetic test that may actually pin down the origin of the disease. Dr. Greco, the specialist we saw in Tennessee, is quoted. I like that he's described as a "leading expert." You can read it here.

I think the test in the story is the one Mike's doctor had done this summer. He called it an assay and said it was brand new, not even on the market yet. It said the origin was small-cell lung cancer, which he and all the pathologists and other oncologists say can't be accurate, mostly because Mike's never smoked. I'm going to print that sucker out though and ask the doctor about it again. If there's a new test out there, we're getting it done.

The story does a good job of explaining exactly what carcinoma of unknown primary is, in case I haven't. It's so complex and weird. I often ask Mike why can't he just have a normal cancer... Hey -- if you can't make jokes sometimes, things can get too heavy.

Mike started a new round of chemo last week. He's feeling a little icky right now, but thinks it's more cold-related than cancer. Something's been going around the office. He has another chemo this Wednesday.

Not much else is new with us. We had a great time at the Billy Joel/Elton John concert. It really was the best concert I've even been to -- the two of them together, so good. It was great to have Lisa and Frank with us. And yes, since I don't get out much, I was the crazy girl in the top row screaming "I love you, Elton!"

We've got Marina coming this week. We're so excited! A Marina visit always means a martini!

We went to the Strawberry Festival for a pancake breakfast last week. Julia loooves her "strawbabies" and we happened to run into a photographer from work. So here's a pic.
And yes, I'm out in public without any makeup.

What's new in your world?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Slowing down

Yes, the cancer is shrinking, but the progress has slowed, we learned today. Each spot got smaller, but by millimeters.

Still, progress is progress. And since the chemo isn't too harsh, we're going to go for another couple rounds to see what happens.

Dr. Neel is going to stop one of the drugs -- called Avastin -- which isn't actually a chemotherapy as much as it's a complement to chemotherapy. At least that's how I understand it. And everyone knows I'm not good at anything having to do with science or math...

Anyway, it's taking its toll on Mike's blood pressure and kidney function. And he was on it in combination with another drug last fall. So the thinking is, it didn't work then and it's causing some harmful side effects now, so let's stop just that one. We'll be heading back to the chemo room next Wednesday.

Mike's a little teed off that the chemo might be slowing. But not to worry. I am carrying the hope for the both of us. I think any reduction is good and I think we could see even more. Damn it.

Monday, March 2, 2009