Sunday, September 05, 2010

If It's Monday, It Must Be Chemo Day

Our good friend Tara is visiting from Santa Cruz, and we're expecting Indigo and Elena too. If it's Monday when you're reading this, Roger is starting chemo today. We're nervous, but ready, especially since the oncologist told us that Roger shouldn't expect side effects for the first two weeks. That's why he gets the third week off, to recover, get necessary blood tests, breathe a sigh of relief. He's chosen to do Xeloda, an oral medication that he can take at home. He wanted flexibility and some sense of autonomy during these sessions. The oncologist said he thought Roger had made a good choice. There is no way to measure if the chemotherapy is working. There is no tumor to shrink. It's more like insurance or like wearing a seat belt. Did that belt save your life? Maybe. It's all about chances.
In the meantime, we've been hiking on a new trail out behind our neighbor's place. It's a lovely walk through the woods, along a ditch, and up around the reservoir. It's become our new favorite hike, and mostly because we see the most beautiful red-winged damselflies there.
These are things we always love leaving the house for. A beautiful balance to everything else.


roger sez.......

i have been apprehensive about this chemo thing. long hikes and work in the prospective garden have helped pass the time and build up my strength. also…the oncology doc was most reassuring about working with me as far as adjusting dosage to minimize the "side effects." i had no apprehension about walking in for surgery. modern medicine is sometimes referred to as "cut, burn and poison." i've been cut. now it's poison. no burn yet.

on the extra plus side, all of the actual humans with whom we have interacted have been quite nice and wonderfully competent, many charming. so far my experience with "the system" has been good.


  1. Best of luck with the chemo. My brother, who had prostate cancer, really had pretty good results from the chemo as in not nearly as dire as he had been expecting and so far so good on the results. I hope it will be so for you two.

  2. Ya know what I say about Chemo? BRING. IT. ON.

    But seriously, walk softly and carry a big stick of ganja.

    Ask not what your chemo can do for you, ask what you can do for your chemo.

    And finally, say with all earnestness, "I Did NOT have intercourse with Xeloda!"

    (What did you spike my wine with?)

  3. I'm holding good thoughts for you, Roger, for both of you! Hope the chemo goes well. You have such a great attitude and I do admire the courage that both of you have. You are surely an inspiration to me! May the week go well, my friends!


  4. I'm glad your experience with the health care system has been good so far. And I hope it continues that way. I'll be thinking of you today.

  5. Oh, best of luck today! I'm taking my young girl dog into the woods for some one-on-one and I will breathe the peace of the woods in your honor. I wish I could do more.

    Stay hydrated. Lots and lots of water! It helped my coworker's wife during chemo, and it sure won't hurt to give it a try.

  6. Keeping good thoughts for Roger as you begin your chemo, and wishing all of you there a good visit together.

  7. Good luck with the Chemo. Good to know that for a while at least, there are no side effects.
    Keeping yourself in good condition is so vital and smart.
    Having good experiences with the system is also vital. No stress there means you are not fighting the system as well as the disease.
    Win big Roger.

  8. We'll be with you all the way. There may be some difficult days ahead, but in years to come we'll sit back and toast to the success of this journey. On Labor Day, every year. Promise.

  9. thank you all. pills have been swallowed. i promise no hanky panky with xeloda.

  10. ahhhh life,

    what an adventure

    it never ends until it does

    standing in the face of cancer makes for strong and courageous beings

    sitting here thinking of you a whole lot and sending warm aloha

    sista lynne

  11. crossing fingers and wishing you well! i'm so glad you are able to do pills instead of infusions -- so much better to be at home. and not be poked.

    sounds like you've got great company, and have had some terrific hikes!

  12. ---Love the synchronicity of like minds....just finished a poem named, 'Akatambo' and then clicked over to you and saw these beautiful akatambo on your post....As you probably know, in Japan, they are symbols of renewal and rebirth. xxxxxooo vibs toward ya's of the most loving and healing kind! peace, MandT

  13. Sending all good wishes for
    your chemo to go fast, effective and smooth as possible.
    Hugs to you all

  14. Thinking of you both as you embark on this new adventure. You have so many strengths, and the ability to squeeze the grist out of every experience, so you will surely get through this with much wisdom and grace. Love to you both.

  15. Kindest wishes today and always!

  16. A day late - but in my thoughts and prayers for a complete recovery.

    Stay positive
    Feel the love your friends send
    Enjoy beautiful things
    Drink plenty of water
    Stay engaged in house projects

    Sounds like a good game plan

  17. Here's thinking of you, Roger. Sorry I missed your entry until today, Wednesday, but the thoughts are with you nonetheless.

  18. Now it's Thursday. Thinking of you.