Friday, January 30, 2009

The Red Devil.. and a few thoughts on Chemotherapy

It's the last day of Dan's second treatment and things are going well. We're hoping for the same quick recovery that happened last time. We are grateful, however, that the infusion has gone better this time around. I never chronicled the story last time, so I will now.

The treatment consists of three days in the outpatient infusion room -- Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The first day he gets doxil and cisplatin. They call doxil the "Red Devil". That's comforting. The actual drug is a bright red Kool-Aid color. You can actually watch it run along the IV line, and into Dan. The first time he got this (about three weeks ago), the minute it hit his body his whole chest tightened up and he couldn't breathe. Luckily, the nurse was right there, she yelled at all the other nurses to come and everyone rushed Dan. It was probably the most scared Dan and I have ever been. He just kept looking at me mouthing the words "I'm okay, don't worry". But it was too late. He couldn't talk... he couldn't breathe, I was worried. They stopped the IV from running, put an oxygen mask on him and after a about 1 long minute, things were fine.

The nurses all assured us that this sometimes happens and that it was just an allergic reaction. They loaded him up on Benadryl and diluted the drug and then it went a lot better. The other drug, cisplatin is the one that makes him so sick. In case you're wondering, it is platinum... So swallow your wedding ring and maybe we'll be able to know how Dan feels :) The good news is since this dose is a lot lower than we are used to, it only takes about three days after treatment for Dan to start feeling well again. Then there's about two weeks where he feels normal. He's going to school and he even worked a little bit last week!

Dan is also taking a chemotherapy pill for the first five days of the cycle. I had no idea you could take a pill! Wow! A couple nights ago I realized that the bottle says to use gloves when handling the pill. I mentioned this to Dan and his response was, "And you want me to SWALLOW it?!" Haha, I thought that was pretty funny.

Overall, this chemotherapy is MUCH easier and we are grateful for that. Dan is still sick, but it's bearable. We appreciate your well-wishes and prayers. We are amazed at the support we still feel. It's been over a year and our family and friends haven't skipped a beat when it comes to supporting us. We love you guys. We are so blessed.

Monday, January 5, 2009


Not overwhelmed with life, just overwhelmed with this blog posting. It's been so long and I have so much!

Let me start with my Mr. Fix-It. Our DVD player stopped working. I was grabbing my keys, getting ready to buy another one, when I found this...
Dan had opened up the DVD player and was attempting to fix it! I love this about him. I sat there quietly, not wanting to disturb. Finally, he got out the hammer and it was time to get an all new DVD player. Thanks for trying Dan!!

Later that night, we tried making a gingerbread house! It turned out pretty good I think. See for yourself...
And finally, Christmas.
We spend Christmas Eve and Day with my whole family. It was SO MUCH fun!!! There were ten kids under the age of 7. I love it. This was Dan's first Christmas with kids since he was a kid. I really think he liked it. Here we are staying up that night getting ready for the morning festivities...
Christmas morning was amazing. It was madness. I love being with my family. These Christmas memories are the ones I will always hold on to. I love you guys.

Then we were on to Kansas. We loved being there. Dan's "Papa" is very sick and it was a perfect time for us to be there with family.
We love you Grammy and Papa. It was a nice, relaxing trip that got us ready to start school again. Oh, and if you are ever in Salina, Kansas you MUST stop at Serious BBQ. It's amazing.

Happy 2009 everyone! I need some New Years Resolutions, so let me know if you have any good ideas!