Diving In


Sandra picked me up from LAX early last week in a black, 50′s-inspired cotton dress, deep v in the front and back, billowy skirt. And why not? It was cocktail hour. In fact, both of us were dressed for a drink at Hal’s or another cute haunt in her stomping grounds.

But it was not to be that sort of trip. I had only 22 hours of sandals-on-the-ground on this visit. I was there mostly to see Doc. Beth, to see if she had any news, information, or promising trials to offer me. She did not. However, she did second Doc. G’s opinion that I should start on Avastin every three weeks through my port and daily 50 mg of oralĀ  Cytoxin. The Cytoxin kills the tumors and the Avastin cuts out the roots. Or is it the other way around? Either way, it’s a one-two-punch system that proves very promising in other patients.

With fingers and toes crossed, Sandra whisked me off to the airport. As the landing gear came up, and plane nosed through the clouds, I marveled over the sweet time spent at Sandra’s adorable abode by the sea: The ordering in of Thai Food and staying up until two am (yes, me!) talking, crying, psychoanalyzing the Real Housewives of New York (of course). And naturally, we squeezed in a latte and croissant at my favorite French Market cafe just before the appointment.

I started the Avastin two days after I got back. It went in smoothly and seemed to yield no side effects. On Saturday morning, I started to take the Cytoxin. Sunday I felt fatigued and lethargic. Monday I couldn’t raise my arms over my head and was weak and exhausted beyond belief. Dennis dragged me into the cancer center at Kim’s bidding (thank you) and I got the once-over by the Doc and a liter of fluids.

There is no telling what was causing the exhaustion. The chemo, at the low doses I’d gotten, couldn’t have been the culprit behind my near stupor. Dennis and I have been holding our breath. No one wants to say it, but we partly fear it’s the cancer gaining ground.

I’d also had crushing headaches, but MD Debbie, our neighbor, asked if I’d given up coffee. I had, unintentionally, just stopped drinking it. She immediately drove to Starbucks to get me a latte. Headache is gone and hasn’t come back. Hey Deb, if you could figure out the exhaustion part too, let me know.

Mari came up yesterday and we spent my birthday resting and watching Mighty B. We were going to go out to dinner, the whole family, but I was just too pooped. But don’t worry, I did have a great birthday morning with everyone, including Virgil, snuggling in to open presents and sing.

Today, I’m a bit better and am planning, as Doc G. suggested, to try half of a Cytoxin tomorrow to see how it goes. I was considering taking a few days off of it, but Doc’s orders, and after all, there’s a battle going on. I don’t supposed we can let the C gain any more ground than it has.

And don’t worry about Little J, by the way. He is having the BEST summer of his life! The kid is on fire. I’ll post some pictures of him and his buddies tomorrow.



  1. MsMiller’s avatar

    The best 22 hours ever. Hoping the next visit is longer, with a stop at Hal’s, a stroll to the beach, a many snorts of laughter. Miss you. Feel better. I know you’re getting better. Whoosh, my dear. Whoooosh. xo

  2. Sidney’s avatar

    Friends are so important.

    You’all snort, too? NOW I feel almost glamorous.

    I’m so glad you two had that time together. #jealousandproud

  3. jo’s avatar

    Hi ya,

    Glad to hear the birthday went well – albeit with a slightly different schedule! I’m looking forward to coming over to see you all soon… I hope!

    Fingers crossed for the new regime!
    love ya

  4. Jan’s avatar

    The immense size of your heart continues to amaze me.


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