Monday, October 29, 2012
Friday, October 19, 2012
Monday, October 15th will be remember by Sarah and I for as long as we live. It is the day Sarah was given, the beginning, of a new lease on life. This is the day she had surgery to remove the spot in her right breast. It began quite early, 7:30, she was given an IV and then went to nuclear medicine to have a dye injected, then she went to get another mammogram which identified the areas of concern. The dye indicated a lymph node had cancer also, this changed the surgeon’s approach and increased the area he cleared of tissue in the breast. When he went to remove the lymph node the pathologist didn’t like the looks of another node so they removed it.
Sarah was in surgery longer than anticipated but she came through it fine and is sitting here at home giving me orders. Actually it is my pleasure to wait on her and make sure she fully recovers from the surgery. We are waiting on the pathology report so we can visit with an oncologist to see what form Sarah’s treatment will take.
Friday, October 19, what a week, the doctors here are great and we were able to get some things accomplished in a week where it takes others a longer period of time. Today Sarah had an appt with the oncologist and the radiologist. First the oncologist, Sarah has to have chemo to ensure a full recovery, radiation is not enough, this is due to the node have cancer cells in it. The treatment takes 22 weeks, so we are staying in the Des Moines area for the winter. (Note to self, buy winter coats.) We will stay in the camper until we find someplace to rent and then winterize the camper and find a storage place for it.
This isn’t what we wanted but this is the hand we have been dealt so we will play it out. The treatment path Sarah is going to go through has a very HIGH rate of success and that is what we are looking for.
So that’s it for now. I will post again when there has been a change in our situation. For now we are back in Iowa for the duration.
Dreams Still Do Come True.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
We met Mike & Sheri Cord for dinner at Pagliai’s Pizza, http://www.pagliais.com/; this is one of the best pizza’s I have ever tasted. We had a great visit with them and Mike brought me the latest Clive Cussler book, one of my favorite authors, I haven’t started it yet but I will as soon as I finish one of the three others I am currently reading.
We met Bob & Judi Van Cleave for dinner at the Olive Garden. We met them at Mesa Regal last winter; they are from the Des Moines area and called to see if we wanted to meet them for dinner. We had a very nice visit with them. We should see them again this winter in Arizona.
Today we went to a “Celebration of Life” for Larry Paterson. We met Larry and Loretta at Griff’s our first year in the camper, 2010. Larry always had a smile, even with his health problems; he was fun and a joy to be around. He will be missed by all.
Today I headed into the VA hospital for my annual physical. I get my labs done at 7:30 because I have to fast and then I can go have breakfast before meeting the doctor. Therefore, after my labs were done I checked into the clinic and found out they had changed my appt to Wednesday. The clerk asked me if I got a letter telling me of the change, I said no. We did get the letter yesterday in our mail packet so at least they did send it.
Now I had a problem because my dental appt was for Wednesday at the same time as the one at the VA. I got on the phone to the dentist and told them of my problem. I wanted to get the dentist out of the way this week because we were scheduled to leave next Monday for Omaha. The dental receptionist was very nice and I was able to get in today being Monday, so all is good.
I hate going to the dentist. I go to a Periodontist for teeth cleaning because they check the gums for receding since I have had the deep cleaning I don’t want to go through that again. So I’m sitting in the chair and the hygienist is fussing around and looks like she about to start and I say, “Whoa there partner, I need that thar gas because I am a CHICKEN”. She looks at my chart and there in big bold letters is the word CHICKEN. So she gives me the gas. I could not go through the pain and agony of the cleaning without the gas and even with it, I struggle not to make loud noises, but I made it through the ordeal and was on my way.
Sarah had her mammogram today. We went over to Orren & Norma Cairo’s afterwards. Norma & Sarah are beading, Norma is very good at it, and she has some very nice bracelets and earrings. It is good for her to do and it keeps her out of Orren’s hair. Norma made chili, which was very good. The woman is a very good cook. As always, we had a good time.
I finally had my physical this morning at the VA. I have a new doctor, Dr. Green, a very nice lady. She is full of energy and as all of the doctors have done in the past twenty years, she told me to lose weight. “I’m trying doc, not doing a very good job but I am trying, most of the time”. I was able to get all my prescription filled.
John & Kathy Evans invited us to go with them to meet Loretta for lunch at Famous Dave’s. Now if you have eaten at Famous Dave’s and never had their bread pudding, you are missing a treat. It is absolutely the best I have ever had, plus take your receipt and call the 800 number on it, get a code and then get a free desert the next time you eat there.
We headed for Moline, IL to meet up with Tom & Cathy Gerdes and George & Barb Granberg, Tom, George and I worked at Ruan Leasing together. Chris & Amy Walkup were going to be there also, but something came up and they weren’t able to make it. Chris we had a great time wish you & Amy could have been there.
We stayed at the Radisson in Moline, it is a great hotel and right across the street from Johnny’s Steakhouse where we ate, http://johnnysitaliansteakhouse.com/ , it is a great place to eat.
We had a lot of fun being caught up on what everyone is doing, Tom & I are not working but George is selling real estate for Ruhr & Ruhr Realtors, http://muscatineproperties.com/. Barb is a retired schoolteacher for the Muscatine school system.
The building is nothing to speak of, just a small garage, at sometime in the past it was most likely a repair garage. Danielle has her own antique shop across the street from the American Pickers store. It was fun to see, there is a 1950 Nash sitting out front of the store, my grandfather had one just like it, not quite as rusty but the same vintage. I bought a t-shirt with a picture of the car on the back of the shirt. I bet I will be the only one in AZ with this t-shirt.
We packed up and headed for the West Omaha KOA in Gretna, NE. We like this campground and as I have stated before it is the only one within decent driving distance of Daniel’s house. It is great to see the kids again.
We drove back to Des Moines. Sarah had a mammogram last week and they called and said they saw a couple things that didn’t look right and they wanted a biopsy of both areas. So we headed back to get this procedure done.
Sarah received a call from the doctor who did the biopsy and he said the cloudy area was clean, no problem, but the spot had cancer cells in it. So we have an appointment with an oncology surgeon this coming Wednesday to see what options there are for her.
Cancer is something you always think will strike someone else until it hits this close to home. I always thought I would get it because of Agent Orange. Sarah has always been the healthy one of the family but now my best friend, companion has it, and it is a sobering thought. I pray the doctors can remove the spot and surrounding tissue and Sarah will be free of it, but regardless I know God will not give us more than we can handle and we can handle anything with his help.
Daniel & Marie refinished their basement and were needing more room to put things. We had several items stored with them, both in the basement and the garage, so we rented a storage unit. Today we took all of the items at their house and put them into the storage unit, plus a few of their things. I suppose we should have done this from the beginning but there was no need for a unit until now.
Today is the day we have been anticipating and dreading at the same time. We were both scared and hoping for the best at the same time. Sarah’s doctor, Dr. Daniel Kollmorgan an oncology surgeon, put Sarah and I at ease immediately. He told her she was going to be fine. Sarah has Stage 1 breast cancer, the tumor is about the size of a pencil eraser and is slow growing, which is why is probably didn’t show up on a previous mammogram. After he examined her, then he gave Sarah her options. A complete mastectomy or a lumpectomy, the mastectomy removes the entire breast and therefore any other cancer cells present. The lumpectomy is the removal of the tumor and some surrounding tissue, then chemo or radiation is given depending on how wide spread the cancer is and if it has gone into the lymph node.
Sarah chose the lumpectomy with five days of twice a day radiation treatments, the radiation treatment is dependent on what pathology says about the cancer and if it spread.
So we are headed back to Griff’s RV Park in Des Moines this Saturday for four to eight weeks depending on the outcome of the surgery, which has been scheduled for next Monday. We are praying for the best results, but prepared for whatever shows itself.
As with all cancer the earlier the detection, the better chance of isolating it and removing all of the cancer cells. The doctor believes this to be true in Sarah’s case.
Until later, Dreams Do Come True.