The Dirty Dozen

The Dirty Dozen is history!!   The Dirty Dozen is the name that Lee has given the initial 12 chemo treatments.  I have finished this first 6-month regimen of chemotherapy,  well not quite, since I’m wearing the chemo pump till Friday morning, but close enough. Six months is an important metric, it is the average life span for victims of stage IV colon cancer that has spread to other body organs who choose to forgo treatment.  If not for my friend Tom May and his assurance that my Oregon Ducks would win the national championship on this New Year’s Eve, I may have chosen to forgo treatment. I could very well have been dead as the Ducks chances of a National Championship this year. Tom is like a weatherman who convinces you that a category 5 hurricane is on the way.  You batten the hatches and prepare for the worst  only to see the storm fizzle out. So what if you have a lifetime supply of canned soup and batteries, you’re still alive. Thank you Tom, your inaccuracies extended my life!  

My report card from the blood lab came back marvelously boring. Immune system, blood count, kidney and liver 🍷functions are all normal.  Jimmy loves a boring “A” on his report card. However the CEA, the marker of tumor activity, came back higher (not good) 4.3 vs 3.7 last month. But, Dr. P told me the higher CEA number is still within the standard deviation and is no big deal.  He further added that I am doing remarkably well in my treatment.  In about 10 days I will have another CT scan to confirm that the tumors have continued to shrink.  If so, the plan is to continue for another six months with the current regimen.  The side effects will most likely worsen, as they are cumulative,  but they have been very manageable to date.  Although the current regimen is not all that much fun,  it is certainly doable especially when playing the tune”Killing Cancer Softly With My Song.” My actual chemo infusion session was uneventful; I secured a good lounger, adjusted the pillows just so, listened to some Kenny Barron jazz on my iPhone and dozed off.

And now for something completely different and much more fun.  I’ve been a busy little painter.  First I completed a commission of these two puppy dogs for a friend in Salt Lake City. 

Zoey is 14 years young and enjoys going for a swim in Lake Powell. here she is, all wet and happy, with her yellow swimming vest.
  
Beautiful and energetic Lola with her “puppy dog” eyes.
 
And now I’m the middle of preparing for the Fall Festival, a local arts and crafts fair. It’s a big show and Lee and I are sharing a spot in the two-day event November 7 & 8.  I have completed these 3 and a half paintings and hope to finish an additional 4 

  

This baby giraffe is named Arnold, he is the twin brother of Harold. Harold was the subject of an earlier painting
  

Elmer dones his red cap and neck tie in anticpation of the holidays
  
George loves his Christmas sweater so much he pops a wheelie
  
 

Advertisements

22 thoughts on “The Dirty Dozen

  1. Congratulations, Jim. I agree that the new CEA number is no big deal. Not a significant change. Your lively spirit of fun is proof there are many more milestones to reach. I LOVE Zoey! What talent!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. good news again. :-). I could get used to this. love lola’s puppy dog eyes. I have a mad bomber hat like your kitty. hate to think of how soon i’ll be wearing it. won’t have to take it Arizona tho. yay!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Other prophecies to keep you going: researchers expect to confirm the benefits of red wine for killing cancel cells (while invigorating all other cells) in a new study to be released in FALL 2016. Researchers are also working on a study of the benefits of painting bright blue backgrounds with puppy dog eyes, backing a theory that it prolongs lifespans by an average of 10 YEARS. Results expected 1Q2017. Shoot, we should be able to come up with a new, probably and highly-desirable “result” every quarter for the next decade!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m diggin your study results. Perhaps that is why I doing so well. The oncologist told me from the get go, no wine during the initial six months of treatment. Then maybe a few glasses if I’m o a maintenance of Avastin only. Well after 6 weeks of looking at blood tests that show normal results of immune system, blood count, kidney and liver function I asked the PA what would happen if I sneaked in a glass of wine for dinner. Her response was probably nothing, in moderation 4-6oz. Well my CEA numbers went down, tumors shrunk while all other systems are normal.
      It’s rather amazin I haven’t had to have any neulasta shots @ $5000 a shot which is the norm. That’s a lot of good wine I’d have to forgo! With my immune system so strong, I kind of wonder how I got polio as a baby.

      Like

  4. Way to go Jim! So glad to hear good ‘boring’ news on the lab reports. Love your updates, sense of humor and your paintings! You are in my daily prayers and I send warm, sunny blessings from Kauai. See you both at the next Art Club meeting on my return to QC.

    Lynn Maier

    Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Smartphone

    Liked by 1 person

  5. So GLAD ABOUT YOUR CONTINUING IMPROVEMENT. MY NEWS IS NOT GOOD MY BROTHER ROY LOST HIS BATTLE WITH CANCER LAST WEDNESDAY. MY SON MIKE HAS BEEN TAKEN OFF THE CHEMO AND NOW ON A BLOOD TREATMENT WHICH IS A NEW THING AND ONLY ON TRIAL. WE JUST HAVE TO HOPE IT WORKS. kEEP UP THE PAINTING. iTS GREAT. jOYCE

    Like

    1. I’m so sorry to hear the news about Roy , may he rest in peace. I’m hopeful that the new cutting edge treatment your son is on does the trick. We’re here if you want to talk.
      See what kind of painting monster your class created bin me!! I do love to paint, it’s been great therapy for me Thank you for opening the window for me.

      Like

  6. We’re also delighted at the continued good numbers. Keep up the good work (to keep the vino flowing!!). And go Ducks — tonight on ESPN vs. those Devils from the Valley of the Sun. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s