Thursday, March 05, 2020

In a good place

I almost called this "In Limbo," because it's not cancer-free, not No Evidence of Disease, nor full remission. But still, it's good, so we'll go with that: I'm in a good place.

I knew we would have a full week, just by starting off with a Kyiv trip, and then jumping into school and documents and life. So, I posted a very quick update on Facebook while we were still in Kyiv. This is the longer version.

The MRI went fine and didn't show anything bad. I really don't like them, but I did better this time, because I knew what to expect, and because I imagined myself in a picture I like. My doctor was out sick, so we got the head of the chemotherapy department, who I also know and like. She explained that my PET scan was good, but not without areas of concern. They want me to have another in 1-1.5 months. Ugh. Her write-up actually says "stop immunotherapy until diagnostic scan to show tumor dynamics," or something like that. And I'm supposed to keep having blood work done and gain a few more kilograms.

She explained several reasons for stopping immunotherapy. One thing is that it's always a balance of effectiveness with side effects. Side effects haven't been too bad for me, but they are there, and we don't want them to get worse. Another thing is that immunotherapy can keep working for an unknown amount of time even without regular infusions. Also, as there are less targets for it to hit in my body, it's more likely to turn against me. I do like this plan of stopping while we're ahead.

The next PET scan will actually probably be a little more than 1.5 months out. I think we're going to schedule with the place in Kyiv that didn't have any openings until the end of May before. Then we can see what my doctor thinks of that, and change plans if she thinks it's too long to wait.

I feel like I can't quite fully return to normal life yet. However, I am going to start going to church again. And, this is really exciting: I'm going to plan a trip to England! I had been dreaming about joining some of my friends on a trip there in April, and it looks like it is actually going to happen.


On Monday, when we were in Kyiv, Asya had a concert here. She said that didn't mind that we would miss it, because she thought was only going to play one song that we've heard many times. I didn't want her walking home in dark alone afterwards, though, so I asked if any of our friends wanted to attend and see her home afterwards. Uncle Joe did. And I was very glad that he recorded one song, because it was the first time Asya and Ira had played it in public. We have a few pictures from him and the teachers, too:


Mom said...

When I saw the news about going to England, I screamed, "She's going to England!" and scared Dad mightily. Since I knew how much that trip had meant--and anticipate how it will feed your soul--I was heartsick when I believed it would not happen.

Envision a happy dance in Altamonte, and you will know how I feel. Praise God!

Baba Julie said...

We are so happy to hear the news of how things are going, so far. And, we are delighted that you are going to be able to make that trip!! We know that will be a wonderful time for you!

And, Asya and friend's performance is WONDERFUl!! Debussy? Which piece is it? We both love and recognized it! So well done! BRAVA to both the girls! Love you all!!