View from the 11th floor of the hospital at UT Southwestern Medical Center this past Friday while I was waiting for an elevator. That’s downtown Dallas on the horizon.
This is a cancer update, for the long time followers who have been with me on this ride…
My Colon cancer is now established in my Liver in addition to my Lungs. The last regular chemo treatments did not stop progression and neither did a research trial drug that I did for a couple of months.
However, this week I started a new research study that looks promising. It’s a Phase 1 trial, which means that the medicine hasn’t been tried in people before. In fact, I believe that I am the 4th person to use this medication delivered in this manner. Basically, they use a CT scanning machine to insert a long 17 Gauge needle into two of my liver tumors. The research drug is injected into one of the tumors with a smaller 18 guage needle and biopsies are taken through the needles as well while they have them in there.
If this sounds unpleasant, it is 😄😄. But they give me a local anesthetic (it’s never enough!) and once they withdraw the guide needles the pain subsides.
After my first treatment I am tolerating the drug really well. We do this weekly for a month and then every other week for another month and then we’ll do a scan and look for signs of improvement or at least the halting of progression.
I am 100% confident that God has me in His hand. Whether I am “cured”, or not, doesn’t change that. Honestly, my level of Joy and Happiness and Calm has been higher for the past couple of years than they ever were before. I owe all that to Him. Cancer has taken a lot from me, but it doesn’t compare a bit to what I have gotten from the experience.
Don’t get me wrong… I really want to be healed. To be able to face the future without having the constant spector of cancer looming over my shoulder. But my Plan may not be the best plan. His plan is.
I know this with no reservations:
God doesn’t promise you a life of ease with no pain. Just that he will be there with you through it all if you let him. And he is never wasteful of your hurts. None of it is in vain.
I’ll let y'all know how I’m doing down the road a little bit 😊
My favorite “find” on a recent roadtrip to Oklahoma.
This is the remains of the First Baptist Church, Colored, of Anadarko, Oklahoma. Built in 1910. I don’t know how long she has been abandoned.
I assumed that the interior would have been long ago emptied out, or that it would be filled with trash, but as the video and picture above attest, she has some treasures within, still. I count three pianos, if you look closely amid the many church pews and othe pieces of furniture.
I had a flash in my mind when I first saw her. It came to me all at once just as vivid as if it were real… If my circumstances were different, I would love to buy her and pull her back from the edge of destruction. Add on a period looking kitchen area in back and convert the church itself into a warm and welcoming dining area. I’d open Friday and Saturday evenings with a limited, but well done, Southern menu.
The Church is in a hard scrabble economically depressed area a couple of blocks from thriving downtown Anadarko. You know the kind of place. It’s where people get shuffled away and forgotten..
The Wife had an awesome idea when I told her about my thoughts of renovating the old building: On Sunday evenings we would have “Sunday Dinner”, where we would serve a different main course with sides and dessert for free to anyone who lives in the neighborhood surrounding the Church. No paying customers. Just a way to reach out to the surrounding people and let them know we see them. That they matter.
Man… that’s a dream that I would surely love to see come true.
Now, if I could figure out a way to have a little less Cancer and a little more money I would jump in with both feet and make it happen 😊
The “baked goods” section at Reeves Farm farmers market. Princeton, Texas. Opening weekend for this season. We stop by here almost every weekend unless our plans take us in another direction. Great place run by great people.. We bought some sandwich rolls, a cinnamon roll to share, and some tomatoes.
This little quilt was hanging in the exam room where I was waiting to do the paperwork, bloodwork, and EKG, to see if I qualify for an experimental drug study..
I know cancer can take a lot from people. So much of it seems totally out of your control, and a lot of it is. I have been fighting this fight going on 5 years now, so believe me I know. It’s very important to remember that there are a lot of really wonderful things that cancer can’t take from you, unless you let it.
Tomorrow is brain mri and CT scan day. And then it will just be a matter of waiting to hear if I am an acceptable guinea pig 😄.
One shot down, one shot to go ( in about three weeks).
Just to bring you up to speed, I’m still kicking 😄. UT Southwestern has me on wait lists for two different clinical trial treatments for my cancer. Absolutely no idea how long the wait might be. Weeks? Months? I meet with Mary Crowley Cancer center tomorrow morning to see if they have any openings that look promising.
If not, I will be meeting with my oncologist to see about taking the last of the “approved” medicines currently in use for treating my cancer. We were saving this one till last.. I’ve worked my way through all the others so it’s almost time to get creative 😊.
Fatigue is still an issue now, even a whole month from being diagnosed with Covid. I AM much better, though, and very thankful that our symptoms were as light as they were.
Cooper loves binge watching old CSI episodes.. He may be considering a career in criminalistics.
Today has been 10 days since The Wife and I were diagnosed with Covid 19. She is pretty much back to normal with a little bit of lingering fatigue at the end of the day. I am doing ok, but my level of fatigue and body aches are gonna be a longer term thing I think. Probably has a lot to do with the shitstorm my body has gone through the last 4 ½ years due to cancer, surgeries, and chemo. I read that it is not at all uncommon for people with “mild” covid symptoms to struggle with fatigue for weeks or months after recovering.
Still, I’ll take this over having to tough it out in a hospital hooked up to a ventilator 👍.
A young lady that has been friends with my Daughter since grade school texted her today, saying that she believes that I am “immortal” since apparently cancer and covid haven’t been able to knock me down for good.
Maybe that’s my super power? Stuff that is supposed to kill me…. just doesn’t?
Unfortunately I realize that isn’t the case, but its interesting to think about.
So…. I discovered Monday that my current course of chemo is no longer working. We stopped doing infusions because there’s no point making myself sick for no benefit, you know?
Also found out Monday that my Wife tested positive for Covid. I went in and got tested the same day and just got my results back. Also positive.
We knew there was a good chance of us getting the virus eventually, given that she works for a couple of Pulmonary Doctors. I am genuinely surprised that it took this long. And that’s assuming I didn’t get it from touching a gas pump handle or picking up groceries.
So far our symptoms are really light. Basically like having a mild case of flu combined with a sinus infection. I am 4 or 5 days into being infected and if our luck holds, and God willing, we should be fine.
I have some specimens out for further genetic testing, so we can try to get a new gameplan on the cancer fight.
The tail end of 2020 is just trying to get in its final licks 😄😄
Always dreamed of fixing one of these old Milk Trucks up with a mobile soda fountain in the back. Like a food truck, but with old milkshake mixers and soda fountain gear. During Texas summers it would have KILLED at outdoor youth sports events on the weekends.
Breakfast at Norma’s in Plano, Texas. This has become a ritual after I get a PET scan, of which there have been many. Carbs and sugar can mess up the scan if you eat them within 24-36 hours or so, and I have to fast completely after dinner the day before. So, by the time I get out of the radiology department I can’t get across town to Norma’s fast enough.
This has to be the most beautiful breakfast I have ever gotten at Norma’s. Almost too pretty to eat.
But I struggled through and ate it anyway BECAUSE I AM A FIGHTERRRR ! ✊💪
I finished this project, after letting it linger in my workshop for several months. Summer heat and chemo slumps kept me from completing it until now.
She began life as a metal rolling file cabinet, circa 1970s most likely. She spent some time in The Wife’s craft room (where she picked up the baby blue paint job). I need extra workspace in the kitchen and The Wife didn’t want her any longer and BAM! A match was made 😄.
I repainted her a cream/ivory color. The butcher block top I made from slats of Ash ripped from one long board I picked up at a hardwood dealer near me, plus a couple of walnut slats from my scrap pile. The cast iron lift handle is from an d printers tray. Finally, I ditched the puny, bent casters and bolted on larger swivel casters that make moving her around a breeze.
Good bit of storage inside and below. Her primary job will be as a stand for my big Kitchen Aid mixer when in use, so I don’t lose half my counter space when I want to rum the mixer 👍