Friday, July 2, 2010

Chemo starts 7/8

So, after my odyssey tour of two colorectal surgeons, my radiation oncologist, and my oncologist, we have made a plan. Three of the four agree that we should try chemo first. The cancer is small in my rectum and, since I responded so well last time in my pelvis, we should give her another go. The other surgeon said, "Full colostomy, no options, but reconstruction, no chemo and after it is over you can do anything but be a line backer." Pause. O-K-A-Y. With colorectal surgery, you have a few options so you want to talk to more than one surgeon. They are a K-pouch, a J-pouch, and a full colostomy. K and J are just the way they are shaped. They are reconstructions of your lower colon and rectum and allow you to "go normally". They actually reconstruct it with part of your colon since you have yards and yards of it. K is not very popular and when I asked about it, they were like, "Yeah, no. Stop reading the Internet." J is a possibility with one of the surgeons because, and I quote, "Angie, I mean this in the kindest of ways. (Pause) You have large hips, so there is a lot of room for me to work and have the possibility of a J-pouch working." I was like, "Well, there is the first thing they have been good for. Clearly, they weren't for child birth since I had two C-sections!" Another "humorous" conversation I had was with my radiation oncologist. He said, "Ang, I can't give you any more radiation to your pelvis. The damage I would do would not be reversible and as you now know, the healing process is long in the pelvis. (Yeah, buddy, I know, we are 2 and a half years out!) BUT, I was looking at your lungs....... and I think......yes, I believe I would like a shot at technology....cyber knife....blah blah blah blah." I am thinking, "My pelvis is saved! WHA??? Do I have a target on my back???? 'Shot at my lungs'??? You know, it takes a special (bordering on warped) person to want to be a radiation oncologist...." More quotes..."This is early. We have time to play with this a bit." Play. O-K-A-Y. "Ang, you are not going to die for this. We have some time before the tumor in your rectum burrows through your vagina and stool come out." That is pretty much when I took the anti anxiety pill. Heck, poop coming our your vagina makes chemo sound easy! So, chemo it is! This will be a different schedule for me, but it affords me 90% of the summer fun I already had planned and I get to go with Shelly. She, by the way, is in complete remission. She will continue chemo through the summer as a precaution, and will do Avastin for a year after that. I couldn't be happier for her and will enjoy her last four sessions with her. I am not sure the chemo floor will know what hit them!!!! Last thing, as many of you have asked, I will have a help calendar. If you are interested in helping, please email Sarah at I think I will do the same process and need help with meals and housecleaning. Thank you for all the emails, thoughts, prayers, and love - your support helps me push through those doors and holds me up when I want, well, you know..... Enjoy your 4th, we have great plans and I am going to enjoy my last few days of freedom - love, Ang


Anonymous said...

Angie, Thankfully you have options. That has to be good news of sorts. Knowing big hips are good for something, well, I don't feel so bad about myself. I can always use the big hip excuse for the future. Make the Fourth special.

Once again, know that you continue in our thoughts and prayers...big hips and all:) Love, Pam

Anonymous said...

Hi Angie,
Lots of love and prayers coming your way.
Have a wonderful 4th of July.
Love that picture of your boys!

Love, Vivian

June Coover said...

Hey, a shock to us AND we are all aligned in our prayers for you and your amazing family and support system!! I would love to have all of you up sometime this summer for a BBQ to see the (still imcomplete).. backyard and take a swim in the hot tub (popular with kids>>) XOXOX The Coovers

Anonymous said...

OMG!!! I, as you know, believe that everything eventually comes down to poop. And, of course, I am right since it apparently can come out of places not designed for poop. Pretty tricky poop is (yoda speak for way cool dude).

On a more serious are in my thoughts and in my heart. I am sending you positive intentions. You will pick the right treatment for you - you always do. Plus I'm behind you no matter what (butt pun not intended...well maybe it is!)

I hope you had a fabulous 4th!