Friday, April 25, 2008

Lima, I Stand Corrected!

All right, it is spelled K-E-W-P-E-E, not Kupee. I am not embarrassed, even though Justin made fun of me for not spelling it correctly. Well even with my error, more arrived today! Mamu and Pa dropped another bunch off late this afternoon and they only lasted a few hours before Justin and I ate them up! I was surprised I was allowed to have any after my spelling error...but Justin let me anyway!!!

Justin has been feeling better this past week. We think the antibiotics did the trick. No sign of a fever since Monday and the tightening in his chest and slight cough cleared up quickly. Phew! Much relief for both of us.

Justin has also managed a bit of exercise everyday. He tries to at least take a 10 minute walk around our block. A few days this week, he even ran several errands. I think he was out of the house for a total of three hours! It is nice to see him try and get out of the house. We are still talking about going to a Tiger's game, but have made no definite plans when our first one will be. We have been enjoying watching them on T.V. It is good to see Justin get excited about their wins. Like I said before, he never lost hope!!!

Jackson and I will be traveling to Washington D.C next weekend [May 2-4th] to celebrate Marissa's 2nd birthday. It was a very difficult decision to leave Justin, so I am sending him to his parent's house. So if anyone is near their house, I am sure Justin would love a visit...and maybe it would calm my guilt pains for going!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Quick Update

Justin had his 5th treatment [#1 of cycle 3] yesterday. He had to go into the doctor early because he had been running a fever. The doctor isn't sure if he has an infection or if it is withdrawal symptoms from the steroids. Justin also has a small cough. Dr. Fata did not hear any fluid in his lungs, but put him on antibiotics just in case.

I can tell the steroids are wearing off, because Justin has been able to sleep better at night. Only a few more weeks and he should be completely done taking them :)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Our "Normal"

Things around the house are beginning to return to "normal". Not too sure what that means to us anymore. Maybe it would be easier to describe things as calming down a bit. I know Justin was feeling good about only one doctor's appointment this week.

Justin's pastime: Ebay. He has been very successful at selling many items the past week. I am excited that he is getting rid of all of the old cell phones [I am surprised people want cell phones from 1999...who knew?], but have become concerned that he might move on to other items we still need. I am grateful that he has found something to keep his mind occupied. Hopefully he won't clear our house out completely.

Mamu and Pa [Justin's grandparents] came to visit this weekend and brought Kupees. I think I spelled it right. I don't know, they are hamburgers from Lima. Now I have to be honest, I did poke fun at the entire Kupee obsession when Justin and I were first together, but I do enjoy their burgers once in a while. Mamu and Pa brought us lots of other treats, too. Regardless, it was nice to spend time with them.

Overall, Justin doesn't seem to be as tired from this round of chemo then his first three. He has begun to lower his amount of steroids. The process will take about a month. Justin said he is very nervous about having withdrawal symptoms. Day 5, so far so good. I think the anxiety is really difficult, for both of us. Waiting for the results of his CT scan was hard. We have noticed that both of us get stressed out waiting for the results. CT/PET scans unfortunately will be around for a while, even when his treatment is done. One day at a time...

One "norm" around our house, of course, is Tiger Baseball. Thank goodness we are getting some bragging rights back here in the "D." I am still holding back...three wins in a row is good, but we still have a long way to go. It was nice to see the "D" kick some behind in Cleveland. I was feeling pretty down after such shameful losses in Chicago. Justin says I am being too critical. He never lost hope. He has always been the positive one :)

Jackson of course is doing great. He got another tooth this week, or maybe two more. I have lost count. I think reality has hit me...he will be having steak at his first birthday party.

We'd like to thank all of you for your continued love and support. Justin is glad for all the e-mails and phone calls. And of course, thank you to our parents. You help us so much...I am not sure how we will every thank you for all that you do. It helps make such a difficult situation seem manageable.

Here's to continued good news, more sleep and sanity!!!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Above Average

The results are in and Justin has once again proved that he is an above average kid! All joking aside, his CT showed a 50% reduction in the mass in his chest. The doctor said that this was very good news. We'll take it!!!!!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Good News, Keep it Coming!

Good news came our way this Monday at our visit to U of M! Justin's MRI showed significant improvement. We are still waiting for the results from his lumbar puncture, but we believe the doctor will begin to tapper off his steroids by the end of this week. We may never know what caused Justin to have the headaches, etc, but we feel at this point that may be a good thing. Whatever happened, It is at least responding to something [the steroids or chemo].

Dr. Junck, Justin's neuro-oncolgist, is a very nice man. We went to the appointment on Monday with loads of questions and he was very patient answering each one to the best of his ability. He even examined the past two MRI's right there in front of us. We [Justin, his dad and me] were able to see the actual improvement in his brain. Technology just blows me away.

I also have mucho respect for Dr. Junck because he commented on what a great guy Justin is. All of us that know Justin, know that this is true. But on Monday, I added one more reason to the list as to why he is such a great person. One of Dr. Junck's interns/residents performed Justin's lumbar puncture and of course, it was her first time. She made the mistake of announcing this when she entered the room...not exactly what a patient wants to hear. She seemed to struggle a bit to figure everything out and to find Justin's fluid. Justin kept telling her she was doing a great job, saying he was only a little uncomfortable. I could tell it was a bit more than just "uncomfortable." Even when the procedure was done, Justin congratulated her and told her a job well done. That's when Dr. Junck told Justin that he is one of the coolest patients he has ever had. Even though I wish Justin didn't have to be his patient at all, it felt great to hear. I think Justin was just glad it was all over with and we could go home. It was a long day.

Justin finished his 2 cycle [treatment 4 out of 12] yesterday. Chris went with him to keep him company. They were home in time to watch the sad Tiger's lose once again. Justin is beginning to worry about the season. He seems to get more tired at the end of each treatment and cannot spare any energy thinking about why they are not doing well. He thinks Leyland needs to have a meltdown on the players. We keep hoping to see him on the field having a temper tantrum on every player! I mean, you just can't blame one. They ALL need to figure it out.