Thursday, November 29, 2007

Biopsy Postponed

We were in the final stages before having the biopsy when it came to their attention that Fred takes aspirin every day for his heart disease. Fred needs to be off aspirin for 5 days before they can do the biopsy. Now we are scheduled for Monday morning. Yes, we changed our plane tickets again to Wednesday, December 5. Fred is scheduled for his every 6 month body scans, on December 19, so we will be flying back to DC on the 17th. That is if we get home by then.

Our plan now is to go to Skip and Sandi's for the weekend. They called again last night making sure that we understood they have a place waiting for us at their house.

We need to contact our Alaska support team (dog sitter, house sitter, chicken sitter and military health insurance people) and let them know the latest changes. We are blessed to have so many people willing and able to help us.

Fred is feeling good. The cold is almost gone. He would not know that there is any problem if it weren't for the blood work. But that is they way it has been through most of this cancer adventure. The PSA is going up, but the numbers are no where near where they were this summer.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The numbers are up.

Well, Fred got up early this morning and went over for his blood tests. I enjoyed a little extra time in bed. He was back home by 10 to take his nap. We knew that Sandra was coming to the Navy hospital for a Doc appointment this we were hoping to get to see her. She did call us and we got to see her for a few minutes before she had to head back to work.

For lunch today we headed over to the hospital dining room and had tacos. It was a clear sunny day. The locals were complaining about the cold but we thought it was just right for walking. We took the Metro and went to a bookstore Fred likes at Union Station. Each of us got a new book to read for tomorrow. It will probably be a long day.

Our liver specialist called in the afternoon to tell us that the numbers went up another 20 points today. So the biopsy is on for tomorrow morning. We really like our liver specialist. She is 31 years old and very through. She told me that Fred reminds her of her own father and that she will treat Fred with the same care she would treat her own dad. We are well taken care of by the whole team of Doctors here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Sonogram and Biopsy

What a beautiful fall morning, we walked to the hospital. It's about a mile or so from our building to NIH. There are still some leaves on the trees and the temperature was about 55 degrees. Walking through the bright colored leaves on the streets reminds us of the fall we were engaged, just 37 years ago. We have had a long fall between here and Alaska.
This morning Fred had a liver sonogram and more blood tests. This afternoon we met with the liver specialist to learn that the liver looked good. Sooooo the plan we have for now is.....tomorrow they will repeat the liver blood work. If the numbers have not come down, he is scheduled for a liver biopsy on Thursday. He will be staying in the hospital for the night on Thursday. Our tentative date to fly home is Saturday, December 2. We have our tickets changed. Any of this could change at any time.
We shared our shuttle bus with another military couple in Fred's trial from California this afternoon. We hope to connect with them again and share the shuttle more often. He has had his own share of problems. Seeing so many very sick patients here makes us realize how good we really have it.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Great Flights

We had such great flights the day after Thanksgiving with first class upgrades the whole way. Skip and Sandi were off on a cruse so we have been hanging out at Navy Base housing for a couple of days. Yesterday we got up late and took the metro to the next stop and ate brunch at a nice restaurant. I talked Fred into taking a little walk in downtown Bethesda. We found a Safeway and got some fruit and a few things before we headed home.

Today is treatment day. We got to the hospital in good time this morning for Fred to get his blood work done. When we went upstairs they put him in an isolation room because of his cold that he is almost over. Too many sick people around they don't want him to make sicker. We saw our usual round of nurses and doc's, but today they did not have good news. Fred's liver enzymes are way up. That means no treatment until they figure out why or if the numbers go back down. Tomorrow he will have a sonogram of the liver. They took a total of 23 vials of blood today, we should learn something. Thursday we will have more Doc appointments and they will decide what is going to happen next.

One more time we will not be going home on our scheduled day. We will keep you posted when we know anything new. I am not changing my plane tickets today, because I do not know what to change them to.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

What day is this & where am I?

I have a calendar in my purse to keep track of Doc appointments, PSA's and travel info. I usually spend some time catching it up to date while I am in the air. That has been a lot lately.

October 26. We went to DC for Fred's treatment a couple of weeks ago. The Doc's decided to put it off until they treated a rash that he had. Well, he was feeling good, so instead of flying all the way back home, we decided to go see the grand kids in the west.

November 1-4. We spent a few days in Seattle with Shane & family. I think those kids have grown an inch or two since we saw them in July. Shane took a few days off of work, so it seemed like we saw them a lot. We celebrated Shane's 35th birthday a few days early with Sunday dinner at Olive Garden. It wasn't that long ago we were 35, was it?

November 4-7. Sunday night we flew over to Boise and spent a few days with the kids over there. We even got to sleep in out camper for 3 nights. Carrie has been living in it in Misty & Peter's back yard. We went to the park and Carrie brought us our picnic lunch. The last time we saw the Twins they were not walking yet. Well they are now and they have places to go and things to see as you can see on Too soon it was time to get back in the plane and head for DC.

Novermber 7. Our faithful friends, Skip and Sandra, were at the airport to pick us up and take us home. We had a day to rest and then Friday, Skip took us back to Bethesda to see the Docs again. Fred still had some rash, so it was decided that they would see us again in Mon. Well, the fun part was that we spent another weekend with S&S. We just join in on what ever is happening. This week they are getting ready to go on a cruse with some of their friends over the Thanksgiving week.

Monday, November 12, one more day in the hospital waiting on Docs and making treatment decisions. This is the 5th time in 2 weeks come to the hospital. It was a good visit. We got a lot more one on one time with our Doc because it was a holiday and there were only a few patients in the day hospital. It was decided that we would come back for a treatment in 2 weeks, November 26.

Home again. We arrived back in Alaska, Wednesday afternoon, November 14. It was beautiful flying in over all those white, white mountains. Our car had been parked for about 3 weeks in the snow and rain so it took us some time to get it cleaned off and warmed up. I was so happy to hear it start right up when I turned the key. Fortunately I had left a warm coat and gloves in the car when I left.

Friday, November 16. This is our second morning at home and we are enjoying the quiet. Yesterday Marni M brought Sadie home. Marni has been taking care of my chickens and Sadie has been staying at her house enjoying their 4 kids and dog named Sadie. We are so blessed by so many people.

This morning about 7am our case nurse from NIH called to try and work out dates for us to travel next week. With Thanksgiving it will be interesting. After a couple of calls it looks like we will fly a week from today, November 23. Now I have to get my ticket worked out with the travel people here. We are so blessed to have our tickets paid for. Now if we can just keep up with schedule. Fred and I both have sinus colds and jet lag that we hope to be over soon. Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers.