When you wait and wait (and wait and wait and wait) to hear someone give you some good news, how does it feel to finally get it?
I had a CT scan today and the image tells a story about how things are going inside my chest. The story says cancer is now losing and chemo is winning. I have had significant improvement in my lungs, with the cancer receding dramatically on both sides. Even the fluid that has plagued my lungs and hindered my breathing since February has reduced in amount.
The winning combination is thanks to two drugs: Avastin and Taxol. Taxol made my hair fall out again (happened last week and is no easier the second time) but if it kills all the cancer then I happily concede each hair follicle in order to save my life and give me more time with my family.
Will it totally kill all the cancer? I don't know and I don't think anyone can tell me. Cancer is one of those illnesses that can go away and come back pretty much whenever it wants. That's why people use the term living with cancer. It sucks, but I guess I'd rather live with it than not live at all.
I don't know how many treatments I'll have. My guess is, I'll be treated until I am NED (no evidence of disease) and then for a little while past that. Or, I could be on treatment indefinitely, if that's how my cancer needs to be managed. The drug Avastin is so new that I would imagine doctors are still learning how to use it to it's full potential. Some chemo drugs have a lifetime maximum of how much a patient can take but I don't think either of these fall under that category. Lots of questions to ask the oncologist.
In other news, I gave the first part of my deposition for my malpractice lawsuit--that entailed answering questions from my lawyer so we could tell my story in my words. My lawyer said I did really well--I guess you can say too much, too little or you can say it wrong somehow. After the questions were over, I felt like I had been beaten with a lead pipe because it was so emotional to answer everything and tell the story. Part II will be the other lawyers asking me their questions. My lawyer said to expect that they will try to turn it around so that it sounds like I am to blame for the delay in misdiagnosis. Can you believe that? Just cross your fingers that this is over soon and I come away with having made those doctors know they were at fault for my current state--a more accurate and quick diagnosis would have saved me months if not years of treatment. Those doctors should either stop practicing or rethink how they practice. The other thing I'm hoping for is some sort of settlement so that I don't have to worry so much about money. If cancer is going to be hanging over my head for a lifetime, then I need to be prepared financially for a lifetime of medical expenses. Not to mention that if I can't return to work, something needs to take the place of my salary.
Thank you to everyone who is saying prayers on my behalf. Keep 'em coming. Namaste.