Thursday, July 19, 2012

Busytown boys (& Belinda)

(From back left) TC, Crim, Scobie, Zach
Jerry, Grindles, Belinda
Calv, Kim, Me, Dev, Twissy 
Remember the Richard Scarry Busytown books when you were a kid; well we had a Busyproperty over the weekend with 13 hardcore mates charging all over our place giving it a makeover. The work involved painting, fencing, tree work and firewood, hedge pruning and chipping.
Graeme Master Builder
Jerry got into the tight holes
It was a play hard; work hard group and Kat and I were amazed how much the team could acheive over 2 days. It was wet weather most of the weekend but that didn't dampen the spirit and fun. We've had a lot of outstanding DIY and property maintenance issues and this was just a practical way for mates to help plus setting the property up and making it easier for us going forward; the guys travelled from throughout NZ and it was also a great and meaningful opportunity for us to get together and catch up.Thanks to all involved, esp. Kim and Dev for initiating and also those who provided food over weekend, it was delicious; Kat and I are thrilled with the outcome. Thanks G
Kim & Geoff - Skidding logs uphill
Project Planning at Portobello Pub

Friday, July 13, 2012

Ha ha, he he... a very good day!

Just back from the oncologists office and we've had a sensational result! The large and problematic secondary tumour has responded to chemo and has reduced in size by 40%, some of the smaller tumours have disappeared. One stubborn marble sized has stayed about the same sized (on the flip: its not grown).
Due to the positive response we're approved for 4 more cycles of chemo.
The palliative nature has not changed. but this has certainly given us some a wonderful window and quality time. Pix coming soon. :-) G

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Wish me luck!

On Friday I'm having some important imaging work done at the hospital which will decide the next course of medical action. The imaging is to analyze the tumour development in my lungs and to assess if chemo treatment is making a positive difference. Obviously doesn't make sense going through such a tough treatment if it's not working; yet concern is what other effective treatment options they have left; are we getting to the bottom of barrel?
I am feeling good, breathing better and in less chest pain and loving this mid-winter sun; something has positively changed.
I think Chemo is my 'Devil I know' treatment and I would be happy if they roll for 4 more cycles which they've discussed although they will only do assuming good imaging. Maybe there is a better option?
They've also talked about using a new technology drug for sarcoma called Yondelis which is getting positive press on the forums and research sites; but the drug is not funded in New Zealand and some complexity trying to get sorted although not impossible.

So what I'm I wishing for? I hope that their technical analysis is accurate and that the medical team make good decisions. I want a positive day when I meet my oncologist next week, with evidence of stabilizing or slowing progress and no significant new developments. I hope that Kat, I and Whanau have the courage and strength with whatever the outcome is to understand, accept and positively move forward. Overriding all, I hope for time, lots of it.
G :-)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

2:00am haircut aftermath

Cycle 2 : Countdown 8 Hours and thumbs up!

8 hours before I'm out of hospital and another milestone through. Cycle 2 has gone substantially better than the 1st cycle. I've had nausea but managing medication better and sleeping lots and eating and drinking well. Takeaways from this improvement: better plan leading in, eating & drinking well (better food & better attitude), better rest leading in, working on faith and prayers (me and others), communicating and working with medical team.A motivator was if I get through the cycle better I will also bounce back quicker, no time to waste.

You can let chemo and the side-effects take charge; Kia Kaha be strong fight back.

I've had a lovely supply of regular visitors including afternoon napping visitor Faye and my girls in watching movies at night (Nemo, Braveheart).

A highlight was getting a nurse to give me a 2:00am #0 haircut as hair falling out and being annoying. Photo coming.

Also I have a lovely custom design pillowcase with wonderful and supportive messages from around the world. I'm sure that's made a positive difference.