Friday, March 25, 2011


Case here. Today is day 98, two days before the day 100 that has been the 'light at the end of the tunnel.' Just when we thought we could make it through the 100 days being as boring as possible, we've hit a bump. Mom's white blood cell count had been hovering around the 3.5 range, which is low, but considerably better than where she was pre-transplant. The doctors had not been concerned though, because there were no other issues and it was holding steady. Starting with the lab results last Friday, her white blood cell count has dropped to it's current level of 0.9. This, as you would imagine, has been cause for concern. The clinic ran a battery of tests and sent off a blood culture to see if they could figure out what was causing the drop. No culprit has popped up, so we're stuck trying to figure out what's wrong, and hoping that it will improve. Mom also received the results from her latest bone marrow biopsy which still says that she's MDS free, but made mention of the biopsy being "mildy hypo cellular," something that doesn't seem to concern the doctors, but has added to mom's anxiety. As you can imagine, mom has been bummed this week, even though the doctors do not seem to be that concerned.

Please send your positive thoughts and prayers her way!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Looking Back

These last 85 days (plus 10 pre-SCT days = 95 full days of treatment) have added a plethora of knowledge and fresh observations to my life experience, such as
  • Yes, Denise, American Idol is fun (Did you hear ST use that big word?).
  • Wind and wigs are a scary combination.  I almost lost my hair all over again in a strong and chilly wind yesterday.
  • You can learn a lot by sharing life stories with a plethora of fabulous friends, especially when there isn't much else to do.
  • Numbers can be confusing,  They want magnesium levels to be high and creatinine levels to be low.  How confusing!  Why can't they just pick high or low and make it easier on everyone.
  • BORING IS GOOD.  Now this one has been the hardest to really believe.  But that is a direct quote from my doctor, so it must be true.  Seriously, boring IS good in the world of stem cell transplants.  My life has been a little dull of late by most people's standards, but that's okay.  In this case boring means things are going very well indeed.
Two more weeks until they begin to loosen my leash.  I hope many of you will keep me from getting bored by stopping by to chat once I'm home for good.  That will be after the March winds, so maybe I will be able to hold onto the hair!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Less than 25 days and counting!

Now this IS ------ THE FINAL COUNTDOWN! And I am beginning to think about life beyond my Nashville apartment, which is kind of scary since with the 100 day celebration will come the reality that I might have to start taking care of myself, Pat, and my normal life routines sooner than I would like! You see, reaching Day 100 does not mean I miraculously will feel myself and will be at 100% of my energetic old self (my caretakers think I'm about at 25% of my normal energy, with somedays less). But after Day 100, I will be at home, thank goodness, with bi-weekly trips to Vanderbilt. I won't be able to drive due to continuing meds, but I will be tapering some of the medications, which might help with energy and feeling good. And I will be able to visit with healthy friends in small groups - that will be the best part!

Meanwhile, it's more of the same. Getting down enough fluids continues to be challenging for me and my caretakers have to be on me constantly. Maybe warmer weather will make it easier. I am constantly reminded of how lucky I have been during this process - it absolutely could have been a devastating experience, so my little aches and pains seem trivial. I will say, however, I do look forward to sunnier days ahead!