Devine site

A little bit about my day, my family, and my knitting.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Doncha Love Surprises?

I do! I hope Gerry does, too, because I am making him a surprise 60th birthday party next week (oh, don't worry....I didn't let the cat out of the bag - he NEVER reads my blog). My cousin offered to let me have the party at her condo's party room - and it's FREE! So, while I would love to do the cooking, I can't because Gerry is here all the time. So I am getting the food and cake from Costco. I am just making the salad (Gerry thinks I am helping my cousin's husband make my cousin a 50th BD party - Gerry doesn't know that she will be 50 in a few years from now).
The best part is that I don't think he knows that the NY Yankees are playing an exhibition game agianst the Florida Marlins at the end of March, right before the actual season starts....and they are playing here in S. Florida. I bought tickets for both games, taking Mom with us to the second one. So I am putting the tickets in his card, but first he'll find a bag of peanuts, can of Coke, and a crocheted hot dog - all leading up to the tickets. Here is the hot dog that I made:

I obtained the pattern here. I used Lion Brand "Vanna's Choice" 100% Acrylic, colors Brick and Beige, Caron Simply Soft White, and a tiny bit of Lion Brand cotton yarn in yellow, plus 100% pure polyester fiberfill. I made it in two evenings while watching TV. After the party it goes straight to Avi!

Gerry has a 6 AM flight to Houston, TX tomorrow. He will start a new clinical trial and fly home on Tuesday. He had been feeling really good the past week or two, and his hemoglobin was up. But this weekend he didn't feel all that great...he had a low grade fever and pain at the "sites." Let's hope THIS treatment will be the one to work for him!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Back to the Old Grind

I am back at work...yea (said sarcastically). Don't get me wrong, work is fine and I had no problem getting the rhythm going, but I REALLY liked being home. I am SO looking forward to retiring in 5 years from June.

Gerry is doing well (at least, I think he is). He went to the oncologist (Dr. M) today and his hemoglobin was just over 10, which is great. The dr is having it tested again next Tuesday and if it's under 10 by any amount he wants Gerry to go for another transfusion so his BC will be over 10 when he gets to Texas on the 25th for the new treatment. Dr. M is also going to talk to Dr. K (in TX) about putting Gerry on Airanesp. Gerry also asked about his being tired all the time in spite of the decent bc, and the dr. said that since Gerry is on several meds he is BOUND to be tired alot.

We just booked a trip to Alaska for June 16. It will be great. We are going on Celebrity Cruise Lines, on the Millenium. You can read all about our trip here. Plus we will stay overnight in Vancouver. I am very excited. We didn't get the room that we were hoping for as the ship books up quickly, but we are hoping for an upgrade - hey, you never know! I am really happy for Gerry that we are going on this trip, as I don't know if/when he'll be able to go on a big cruise like this again. Gotta grab the good times while you can!!!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Best Laid Plans

So much for things working out!! I thought that since Gerry was doing ok and I didn't have to fly to TX with him for this new treatment that I would return to work 2 weeks earlier than planned (that paycheck was crying for me). Well, Gerry has had a fever since last Monday, the day after we got off of the cruise ship. The first few days he had a runny nose with the fever. When we saw the dr. in TX the fever was around 99.5, but the next morning it was almost 101 so the dr. prescribed a Z-pack antibiotic. Gerry started it immediately, before we left TX. He had fever Saturday and Sunday, but it was low on Sunday and he napped before the BIG GAME (Giants vs. Patriots). We had Mom and a few friends here and we had a wonderful day. When the Giants won, my tired Gerry was so excited he jumped up yelling (as Mom and I did too) and he ran in his stocking feet, out of the house, yelling down the street! Do you think he was happy? You bet your butt he was. But Monday he still had a fever. I went out to do errands at 3 PM. He napped, and when he woke around 6 he had 102 temp, so we went to the ER that is in the hospital (Bethesda) 2 miles from our house. They did a chest x-ray, took LOTS of blood, urinalysis, gave him two antibiotics and finally at 2 AM they admitted him ( a week is a long time to have an unidentified fever). He is still in the hospital. When he was admitted his white blood count was 13.0 (range is 4.5 - 11.0), which indicated a possible infection. His hemoglobin was 8.9 (range is 14 - 18). He ran fever low to 100.1 on Tuesday, and had no fever today until 7 PM (after the dr had been and gone). Yesterday (Tues) his WBC was down to 10.4 and today it was 9.0, so that's good, but his HGB is 7.9. He is getting a transfusion tonight at midnight. He now has a new Florida oncologist (who is also my mother's doctor) and we like him a lot. He looked at Gerry's scans from last week in TX and ordered an ultrasound of the pelvis, which is being done 9:30 tonight. He will also prescribe Airanesp (Procrit) for the anemia.

We got a call from TX that they need to change the date for Gerry to start the clinical trial (see below). They wanted to make it for next Thursday the 14th, but Gerry was worried that if anything went wrong he would not get back in time to attend the Daytona 500 for which he has (very expensive) tickets. The race is important as he feels it could possibly be his last. So we made his treatment start date Feb. 25th, and I rearranged his hotel and flight reservations.

Had I KNOWN (and who does?) that he would be in the hospital I never would have made arrangements to return to work, but the paperwork is in so...I am going in two days. The sucky part is that I had planned to do "stuff" for the past three days but I have been with him each day. Tomorrow I have to get that "stuff" done, so it will be a run-around morning! Am I allowed to yawn a bit and say I'm tired? Ok, just this once!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Hanging in There - Being Positive!

Gerry had his scans yesterday. Good news...the "something" that was seen on the brain MRI a month ago is not there anymore - so that little scare was for nothing. While I have not read the scan results yet, the dr. said that the tumors in Gerry's abdomen and pelvis have grown a little more but he wasn't freaking out over it (but then, the dr never does). He was pleased that Gerry has been feeling better and less exhausted (except for a cold that he has now that is making him feel lousy). So - on to the next step: Gerry will now be doing a clinical trial that is an immunotherapy, geered to making his body recognize that the tumors are BAD and that they should be attacked and chewed up! He will return to TX, starting on Feb. 11th, for one day of treatment. The treatment is a 90 minute IV infusion done as an outpatient. Then he will be monitored for a few hours and will fly home the next day. He will receive the treatment every three weeks for 4 treatments. Two weeks after the last treatment he'll have scans, and if they show that there are no NEW tumors, he will continue the treatments, receiving them every twelve weeks. The side affects are not too bad, the most common are skin rash with itching (like a heat rash) and possible diarrhea (that can be controlled with Immodium). His bloodcells and platelets should not be affected. So for now, our optimism continues!!! The downside is that I will return to work much earlier than planned. I was going to return on Feb. 25th. However, since he is ok and I don't have to fly to TX with him for this treatment, there is no need for me to be home. My principal said to return on the 11th, and I have requested to go in on Feb. 8th to "shadow" my subsitute. Even though she is basically mirroring what I do/did, she is the one who has been with my class for over tow months so I feel that I need to observe HER before taking over again. I am looking forward to seeing the kids, but mostly my friends at the school, AND seeing a paycheck again! How I missed it!!!!