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My journey with kidney cancer

Latest journal entry

3-23-2018

     Saw the doctor Monday which turned out to be very bittersweet. We went over results which were mostly stable with some slight shrinkage on adrenal tumors. My numbers on my thyroid hadn't changed so he upped my dosage again until we get it right. My pancreas numbers were elevated too but most likely due to the drugs and we were told not to be concerned about this right now. Other than that, the rest of my labs were within normal range. All good news.

      The sad news was that doc told us he was retiring at the end of June. It was really unexpected, kind of. He is such a workaholic and it has cost him his marriage as he spoke of his recent divorce. I know he's a workaholic but the other is my theory. We spoke about his adopted Russian kids and joked about me coming over to stay a few days and just talk. The news was compounded by the fact that our pcp is also retiring the end of June.

       Maybe this means it's time for us to move on? We have been looking at property further south and always said our parents were what was keeping us here, but they're gone now so that's a moot point. Then, it was Dr. Olencki, I didn't want to leave my medical team at OSU. We don't go back now for 3 months and while he will still be there, he won't be seeing patients anymore. We will meet our new doctor at the time who comes highly recommended.

       We never use the "C" word when we have our visits because there is no real "cure" for this cancer. During our talk, doc mentioned that he firmly believes that this is my "cure", that I should be good for another 10-20 years of good life. I thought it was a bold statement and in mind I don't ever see the worry going completely away even though it has eased quite a bit. I have trusted this man with my life for over 6 years now and know, from knowing him, that he understands this disease more than most as well as the treatments and results from them. I did not realize how significant my results were until he said what he did and that more comforting than anything we've felt in a long time.

       The 3 month span seems like forever with all the visits we've had since October but it is very welcomed. Perhaps, with God's help, these visits will be spread even farther apart and life will be more like it used to be before this cancer was found, to an extent. I've said before that this disease has changed my life profoundly and it truly has so while I want it to be like it was, not totally. This stuff, with God's help has showed me so much of what I had been missing in life and i am forever grateful for that. 

      If this is my "cure", I guess we won't know for a while, but if it is, what a tremendous blessing. And, why me? A long time ago I spoke of the letter my friend Alan, whom I met through doc, wrote and the question of having the disease was more why not me than why me. Well maybe this is true here also, why not me? I can recall many times in my life why it shouldn't be me but since having this and my eyes being opened wide to the beauty of life and relationships. Just the other day I met a couple from Cleveland that had come to OSU because Cleveland Clinic was out of options for them. I offered up words of encouragement and hope that they might find what they were longing for, more time together. Maybe that's what God wants me to do so why not me? I don't think I'll ever be comfortable with God blessing me with this while there are many others more worthy that still struggle but I will do my best with whatever charge He gives me. I hope we all do the same.

       I hope you all enjoy a blessed Easter and until next time............

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