Barnes, Relay & BBQ

Thursday we finally got out of Springfield around 6:30PM after I had spent the whole day in outpatient.  We dropped Mom & Ryan off at my parents house and John & I continued up to the city.  We stayed in a hotel right next to Barnes, which we didn’t get to until around 11, but it was still better than getting up at 5 and fighting rush hour traffic.

The next morning we went to Barnes at 8AM to meet with Dr. Westervelt.  He told us that, at this time, he doesn’t want to do a transplant.  It is a very risky procedure and since we are having success with the chemo regiment we are doing now, we are going to save a stem cell transplant surgery as an option to explore if I relapse from just chemo.  We are getting the ball rolling to see if my sister Pam is a match and to see if I am a match to anyone currently in the donor database, just to have that much done in case we need to do it in the future.

So that means the plan is to continue with what we’re doing.  I have a couple weeks left of this round (2B) and after Memorial Day I will start the 4th round.  The 4th round originally called for radiation in addition to chemo, but we are not going to be doing that, which I’m very thankful for.  This next round several weeks long (maybe 12) and involves almost weekly spinal taps…not looking forward to that.    I still have a few more months of chemo at the pace I’m going, then after that we start a 2 year maintenance plan.  This will involve chemo about once a month and oral chemo daily, hopefully only having to go into outpatient or the drs office a couple times a month.

After my appointment we had lunch at PF Changs (my favorite!) then went back to Mom & Dad’s house to take a nap before we went to Relay for Life that night.  This was the first time I have been to a Relay and it was a lot more emotional than I thought it would be.  I walked the survivor lap with my Aunt Phyllis, who is a breast cancer survivor.  She stayed the whole night, I’m really proud of her 🙂  I’m also proud of my cousin Richie, who organized our team & stayed all night, along with my cousin Tracy .  It was really cold and windy, John & I only made it until 11PM.  In the end, Team Sampsonite won the 5 star challenge!  Thanks to everyone who was on the team and who came out to support us.    We drew the winner of the Tiffany locket necklace and the winner was Zach Belyew, a friend of mine and John’s from college.  I got a few pictures from the night, along with the rest of the weekend, in the slide show below.

Saturday afternoon Mom & Dad had a BBQ and the whole family came out.  My family had organized a raffle of a LCD TV to raise money for us.  Money is generally something that I don’t really feel comfortable talking about on the blog; we have had several people be very generous and we appreciate it more than you’ll know.  It’s just a weird feeling… taking money from your family and friends.  I know everyone wants to help and we are learning how to let people help us.  I just wanted to let you all know how much we appreciate your support.  Thank you!  Another friend of mine won the TV, Victor Isidro, my cousin Brian had sold him the winning ticket.

We got home around 10PM on Saturday night.  Sunday morning John took Ryan over to his parents house while he went to work so I could rest after the busy weekend.  It’s a good thing too, I spent most of Mother’s Day in bed and got sick a few times.  My sister-in-law Shannon had the family over to grill some brats and burgers, but I didn’t make it out of bed to go.  John and Ryan got home in the evening and Ryan went to bed right away, so I really didn’t even see my little buddy all day.  I did get a framed picture collage and a flower pot with Ryan’s hand prints on it, that made me smile.  I want a Mother’s Day re-do!

This morning I had to go in at 10:30 for labs.  I knew my numbers would be low, but they were REALLY low.

WBC:  .6  *Normal range is 4.1- 10.9

Rgb:  7.2  *Normal range is 12-18

Platelets:  3  *Normal range is 140- 440

I am in outpatient having to get two different kinds of chemo, 2 units of blood and platelets.  The problem is that the outpatient center will close before I have time to get it all (meaning I’ll be here until around 7).  I will come back in first thing tomorrow morning to get the second unit of blood.  Guess I really won’t get to see the little buddy tonight either, he’ll be getting ready for bed around the time I get home!


8 thoughts on “Barnes, Relay & BBQ

  1. You are such an inspiration! Laura, I’m amazed by your determination and strength! You are in my thoughts and prayers!

    I think you should definitely get to have a Mother’s Day take two! Looking forward to seeing you this weekend.



  2. I am pretty much in love with that slideshow and I might have watched it twice. Sounds like the doctor news was good! I’m always thinking about you and can’t wait to see you!

  3. Laura,
    I say have a Mother’s Day re-do every Sunday! 🙂

    You will admire and appreciate that flower pot for many years to come. Those are my favorite kinds of gifts.

  4. You are hanging tough, Laura! Praying those numbers come up soon. Congrats on a successful Relay….awesome pics!!! 🙂

  5. Hi Laura, thank you for sharing the info and pictures. I agree that you have a Mothers day do over. You are still in my thoughts and prayers every day. Tell John and baby Ryan hello for me and give the little one a big hug and kiss for me. Please let me know if there is ANYTHING! I can do for you guys. It would be a blessing for me, so don’t make me miss out on a blessing, Ha Ha. Love Ya, Nin

  6. WOW! We love you so much!!! People including me have any ideal the financial or mental stress an illness can cause a family! All the peoples lives you have touched are happy to help you. You are not going to lose in any way if we can help. I am also so proud of Aunt Phyllis! I remember when she was bald!

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