Wednesday, October 8, 2008

My Medical Status

Now that you all know what's going on with my "behavioral health", I want to share with you where I am physically.

The immediate goal, meaning the two weeks bewteen oncologist appointments, is to continue progressing in my general physical and "behavioral" health.

I had literally ended up in a state of starvation. It was very unnerving, as if I could actually feel my body dying. I started exhibiting other medical problems the weaker I got. The worst of it, in many ways, was passing out. Twice my children were near me and thought I was dead. And the time I hit my head wasn't so great either.

For both physical and emotional reasons, I wasn't eating and keeping in enough to sustain me. I am now on a nutritional supplement regimen and am eating, even when not hungry. Another one of the areas where my way wasn't working. I had been stubborn about that I shouldn't have to eat when I wasn't hungry and/or when food looks or smells repulsive. Quick trip to starvation that way! Also, I have learned that malnutrition impacts your "behavioral" health and contributes to depression. Who knew?

So I am trying to pack on the pounds and I am making some progress. Yeah me!

Because of my crappy condition, I have yet to be able to even try the other oral chemo drugs. My oncologist and I both agree that if I try before I am ready, I am setting myself up to fail. And I need to be able to give everything I have to tolerating these medications. They have the potential to buy me some good time.

My "counts" have started heading the wrong way again. I will at some point try to explain more of what all that means, ie. what they are actually measuring, checking, and monitoring. For now, the easy explanation is that whenever I go to the oncologist, they draw blood to check my counts. This tells us if I am holding steady, improving, or deteriorating. The greater and quicker the shifts, the quicker I head towards a crisis. So my next count check on 10/20/08 will be an important piece of information.

Many of you have asked questions about bone marrow donating, matching, the transplant process, and more. I plan to write about those topics soon, at least answering as best I can for a layperson with cancer training...... You may also want to try my link to the Leukemia and Lynphoma Society. They have lots of good and scary info there.

Each day I feel a little stronger. And that is a good thing.

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