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.
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