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Michelle Kendall - Journal

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Posted 2019-04-26T19:17:00Z

Michelle's Marijuana Miracle?!

I started yesterday at Hospice, having a more emotional than usual chat with my counselor, Ginny.  Bless her for holding space for a really good cry and purge of a huge pile of "anticipatory grief."  I was feeling fragile, mortal, and pessimistic.  Then I moseyed into Dr. Sekhon's office for a routine check-in.  Shocker, my CA marker fell from 37 to 22!  A 15 point drop, 40% reduction in 5 weeks. With all the anticipation of surgery, I had sort of forgotten this was the first blood check since going high dose.  The universe cracked open; my mind was zinging around.  What does this mean?  This reduction is as large as any I had during chemo.  But I'm not on chemo, I'm not even on Avastin.  I'm on high dose THC.  THC!  Since my last blood draw, I have gradually increased my daily THC dosage to about 60mg daily.  I am now convinced that THC has a dramatic effect on my cancer cells.  Dr. Sekhon was not quite speechless, but certainly amazed. Her words of wisdom -- "one data point does not make a trend"-- but we agreed on another blood test before surgery.  I will continue with my dosing and look forward to reporting back on my CA 125 on May 13 at my pre-op physical.  Surgery is set for May 15th.  Until then I will study up.  Does anybody know a pharmacologist with an interest in cannabis?  I feel like I was just plucked from my life into a Hollywood plot where I have to find a cure for my own cancer.[...]

Posted 2019-04-19T23:46:00Z

surgery! date TBD

Bruce and I met with Dr. Rodrigues, who I can now officially call my new Gyn-Onc surgeon.  We had a comprehensive visit, discussing my medical history and the details of a second debulking surgery.  We do not have a surgery date yet because she is coordinating with Dr. Conway, who will be scrubbing in and going after the "hot" lymph node adjacent to my pancreas.  I am relieved that they hope the procedure could be laparoscopic.  No promises; everything could change when they get in there, but I am hopeful.  As much as I want a debulking surgery I hope it will be easier than the first go around.  Mom, no peeking.  I was looking at this post-op picture, trying to get psyched up.  If I navigated my way through a 52 staple incision surely I can manage a little laparoscopic surgery. I could be in hospital only 2 days -- I can do this!  But then there is more chemo/immunotherapy.  It's a long long row to hoe.  We meet with Dr. Sekhon again next week, where we will likely get more details on the drug regime she has planned for after surgery.  The goal is to hopefully get me back into a good solid year-long remission.  We will keep fighting on and finding joy in today.  [...]

Posted 2019-04-12T23:01:00Z

The Patient Patient

Wednesday morning I was on the surgery table, drifting through a light anesthesia with memories of family luaus, coral reefs, and manta rays sloshing in my head.  What a lovely Hawaiian adventure.  Thank you, Mom, Jim, and Donna for traveling with us.  And thanks to the crew of Uncruise for an amazing week. How is it possible? -- last week I was kayaking and snorkeling but this week I wake from surgery after having a port "installed."  I don't know how to make sense of this reality.  The boundary between health and wellness from disease and illness is territory I am still, after 3 years, learning to navigate.      [...]